It’s easier to sell products or services if your target customers trust you, and that’s a conventional wisdom to any form of marketing.
However, it’s a bit quite more challenging, if the principle is taken and implemented over the web, as the more web users grow and learn more of how they can utilize the web efficiently, the more they get shorter attention span and the more they get picky with what they choose to consume from the web.
Being an authority in your industry, especially online, is very vital nowadays, whether you’re into online retailing, affiliate marketing or just offering other web-based services, because it allows you to effortlessly attract more leads that will most likely convert and transact with your business when your audience is already captivated upon first impression.
Competing for attention on the web is continuously rising, seeing that a lot of online-based businesses are now investing more on how they can creatively market their businesses across to their audience who have a successively growing demand for information.
Substantiating and placing your brand as an authority in its industry is certainly one of the best solutions to it, and the ideas that I’ll be sharing below are some of the techniques that you can implement to grow your sales by simply exemplifying your brand as a leader.
Show that your brand is socially active, by making your social badges more visible to your site’s incoming traffic to attract them in taking more interest on what you can offer to them.
Social media has been a very powerful tool for marketing these past few years, and letting your visitors see, particularly your site’s first time visitors, the amount of people following you on different social platforms can simply prove that people trust you as a business entity.
The key to being successful with this approach is to constantly grow your following base on social networks where your target audience spends their time mostly through:
- Providing more content that your target audience will most likely share on social networks.
- Using social buttons as your site’s contents’ secondary call-to-action (for them to easily find where they can follow you – Facebook, Twitter, Google+, RSS Feed, etc…).
Increase Middle of the Funnel Offerings
People will not buy instantly on the Internet, not unless they already know what they are really looking for. That’s why nurturing your traffic to eventually become possible leads to your business is so important, as this helps them decide when purchasing what they really need.
Provide more content from your site that attends to your target customers’ needs, in terms of information and free, but of high value materials such as:
- Expert content, like thorough and useful blog posts.
- Free rich-media content, like ebooks, video tutorials, podcasts and infographics.
- Free newsletter subscription.
- Free trials for your services or free web-based tools.
- Free lessons.
- Community forums or Q&A sections.
Giving away premium items for free will allow your audience to understand more of what they might possibly need in the future and they’ll more probably buy from you if you already have these things in place and if you have them contained within your business funnel which keeps them on coming back to your website.
Build More Trust Signals
There are lots of forms of trust signals that you can display to your possible customers within your site. These signals are the ones that can make your visitors stay longer in your site and probably one of the factors that can entice them in purchasing from you.
Here are several trust indicators that you can implement on your site:
- Social proof, as I have mentioned above, the more followers you have on different social networks, the more credible you’ll appear to your customers.
- Having a strong community within the site, given that when your followers interact with your brand through blog discussions (comments) and/or sharing your content on social networks, the easily you can entice new visitors to become a part of your community.
- Showing off press mentions or websites that have featured your business (“as seen in”), client testimonials and/or award badges can elaborate on why you are leading in your industry.
Send Out Massive Brand Signals
Brand retention is the key to scaling a business’ ability to sell its products/services, for the fact that people will know who you are, where to find you and why they should purchase from you instead from your competitors.
- Build more branded share-worthy content, such as videos, infographics and research-based text content, so when people start sharing and spreading your content, possible viewers can know more of you as a brand.
- Invest on a visually appealing web design and engaging identity for your site to improve your visitors’ experience when using/browsing your website.
- Know your business’ unique value proposition and focus on marketing that aspect of your business, through the content you’ll be providing on your website.
- Invest on launching viral marketing campaigns.
For a more in-depth tutorial, you can check out one of my recent posts on using SEO, content marketing and social media for online branding.
Become known by being everywhere
Becoming an authority also means becoming popular, and building your brand’s online presence by being more involved in your industry’s online community is definitely one of the best ways to do it.
Here are some of the methods that you can do to amplify the reach of your brand online:
- Participate on high-traffic forums in your industry and build yourself as an authority by giving expert advice to other members.
- Engage online influencers in your industry as well as their followers by sharing your knowledge to them through joining to discussions on their blog posts, social community (Facebook Fanpage, Google+ brand page, etc…) and eventually become a link magnet when these influencers start realizing how valuable your content is and start sharing it to their networks.
- Build conversations through social networks (Twitter, Facebook and Google+).
- Contribute expert content on industry-specific blogs and news websites as a guest blogger or columnist.
The more people see you contributing through these channels, the more they’ll be interested to what your business is offering, see how authoritative you are and probably increase the chances of buying your products/services.