It’s never easy building a strong reputation for your small business, but the Digital Age has certainly made things easier than they used to be.
In fact, if you know how to leverage the right methods, there’s absolutely no reason your small business can’t enjoy just as much credibility as your much bigger competitors do.
4 Ways to Become More Credible Than Your Larger Competitors
The online age has made it easier than ever to build a presence and market your services and products to customers. That being said, building a strong, credible reputation is more important than ever. Prospects that find you credible will find it easier to become your customers.
Fortunately, there are four simple ways you can start building this kind of credibility right away, making it easier to compete with larger companies.
1. Create Professional-Looking Invoices (But Keep It Simple)
Don’t lose future business from a customer because you lack professional-looking invoices.
Instead, use an invoice service to make them look professional. Do not make them yourself.
Keep them simple, too. Many small businesses assume their larger competitors must have incredibly ornate invoices, but the truth is that they’re usually very straightforward. Don’t make it difficult for customers to pay you or they may go looking for someone else to pay.
2. Take Email Just as Seriously as Your Large Competitors
While we have more ways to communicate with clients and prospective clients than ever before, , email has proven to be a key way to inform and assist customers.
Providing support to current customers via email or using email during sales efforts can help your company look larger than it really is, if done correctly. Polished and professional emails will elevate how clients perceive your business.
For example, leveraging automating email responses for your customer service team will allow them to quickly and sometimes instantly respond to clients. Using some email automation tools like Mixmax, you can create email templates for repetitive emails, such as a welcome email. This email can include all the necessary on boarding documents and links to additional resources. Then, using custom rule automation, emails can be sent automatically. For example, once a document is signed in DocuSign, the welcome email can be sent out to the client.
3. Become an Authority
This is actually a lot easier to do than it sounds.
First, go on Help a Reporter Out and create an account, so reporters can contact you when they have industry-relevant questions (and, of course, give you credit in their articles). Then, make sure you highlight your exposure on social media.
Second, start networking with industry sites for guest-posting opportunities. This is just one more way you can show the world, “Look at all experts who find me credible.”
Third, build a local online presence in Google to show customers you’re an established business in the local community.
4. Use Social Media to Get Involved with Your Market
Finally, as we just touched on, get on social media and get busy posting. You can use services like Hootsuite and Buffer to schedule those posts for the future, which will make it a lot easier.
Don’t just share your own posts, either. Share industry-relevant posts from non-competitors, too. The more helpful you are to your followers, the clearer it will be that you know your stuff.
Make the Most of Your Time as a Small Business Owner
There’s no doubt about it: building your credibility with these four methods is going to take time.
However, that’s one resource you have that your larger competitors often don’t. Yes, a work-life balance is importance and, yes, as a small-business owner, it can often seem like you barely have enough time for lunch.
Invest the time in those four options above and you’ll soon reap the rewards, which will mean greater credibility and a lot more business.