Establishing Authority to Improve Online Conversions
Authority is essentially the idea that you have something incredibly valuable to offer based on the good things you’ve already provided in the past. You stand above the rest, alongside leaders and influencers. People turn to you for information, and they will gladly pay attention the moment you have something to say. It is also one of the biggest factors in transforming merely interested leads online into full-blown paying customers.
Here are eight effective ways of establishing authority that you can start doing to improve your online conversions
1. Start a Blog
It’s one of the easiest things you can do online, and there’s a lot that you can achieve by running one. Share your insights to show how much you know about the industry. Inform your readers of the value of your products or services. Reach out to other bloggers to form professional relationships. Increase overall traffic to your website as you get more people checking your blog for updates and the additional SEO benefits.
To ensure that you’re getting the most out of your blog, host it in your company website to keep the readers glued there while automatically establishing trust. You also want to include call-to-actions (CTAs) and lead forms so that once your readers have been thoroughly informed and convinced, they can act right away leading to more conversions.
2. Engage in Social Media
With so many people making Facebook, Twitter and all these other social media platforms an integral part of their lives, you need to be part of it. By doing so, you allow your customers to know more about you while also being able to express their support and whatever suggestions they might have. In turn, they can act as your own guerilla marketing team when they endorse your company to their own social networks.
You just have to offer something of value in all of your posts and updates to get a sizable following, and you have to be consistent. When they write a comment, make sure to reply. Put social share buttons on your blog to maximize both platforms.
3. Put up a YouTube Channel
People in the US watch 10 billion videos on YouTube a month which is actually a bigger figure than the amount of search queries done on Google per month. The potential for marketing here is huge especially because videos get show so much more than mere pictures and text. Blendtec.com made a popular series of videos called “Will It Blend?” which resulted in an astounding 700% increase in sales!
Use them to demonstrate how your products/services work or how to accomplish certain tasks related to your industry. The knowledge your customers acquire from watching these videos will help convince them to make purchases.
4. Try Public Speaking
It might be one of the hardest things to do especially when you’re not naturally gifted, but successfully doing so can be very beneficial to your business. Just by doing this, you raise your public profile to an incredible degree and you gain a reputation for being an expert in your field.
When starting out, come up with a subject that you believe you can talk at length about. Write it in a way that will compel people to listen. Pitch that idea to organizations you know cater to the audience you want to communicate with. Keep in mind that people go to talks to learn something, not be sold a product. To help generate leads, prepare some giveaways and forms (say, a feedback form) for interested audience members to fill out with their contact details.
5. Host Webinars
This is merely an extension of the previous idea, as you are taking the learning and discussion aspects of public speaking online. And thanks to the latest advances in technology, this has been made much easier. You can also choose to either be the lead speaker or have other industry influencers do the talking.
Focus on educating your audience, and you can do this with a number of topics ranging from new technologies that are affecting your industry, specific problems they face that need addressing and so on and so forth. Capitalize on their long-term value by archiving them on your blog.
6. Run Contests on Social Media
As mentioned earlier, social media is a big part of a lot of people’s lives. You can leverage it in another way by hosting contests that make full use of its wide-reaching capabilities and its active user participation. By using this method, you get to increase brand awareness, build relationships with your customers and even help out your ranking on search engines once your social media accounts’ activity and followers rises.
Velas Resorts, a series of high-class hotels in Mexico, ran a contest on Facebook where they had a grand prize of preparing a dream wedding worth $13,000 that led to a remarkable increase in their social media followers as well as traffic to their affiliated websites.
A good general idea for a contest is to have contestants create content such as funny photos, cool videos and informative essays. You’ll get flooded with good content that you can use later on.
7. Show Your Expertise
It’s not enough that you believe yourself to be an expert in your industry. You have to let the world know just how much value you can bring. Doing just that establishes your online reputation as a go-to resource for information and even good opinions on issues concerning your industry.
Two of the best ways of accomplishing this involves having a great handle in writing. The first is in writing articles not just solely for your blog, but articles that will be shared throughout social media and through high quality sites. Offer guest posts in relevant websites with a lot of regular visitors. The second way is to write a book and get it published. It’s incredibly time-consuming but there is nothing that says you are someone worth listening to than having a physical copy of your ideas printed and bound.
8. Team Up with Your Peers
There is the old advice of getting in touch with industry leaders to get a leg up in the competition. The problem is everyone is doing just that, and it has devolved into simple ego-stroking that it isn’t that effective anymore. Instead of taking your chances with those influencers, you can just form alliances with people in your industry who are in the same level and build your authority by helping them out.
Reach out to other start-up or small businesses through blog networks, social media and forums discussing your industry. Offer some of your products/services for free, and with the principle of reciprocity in mind, they will more than likely offer something in return.