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How Do I Build Credibility and Presence Online?

Speed-Posting@SmallFishMedia asks about “How To Boost Credibility And Presence Online As A Blogger”

Let me compile a little list of comments on this questions:

  • it takes time to build credibility with people. Don’t rush it
  • work at having a presence not just on your own blog but in other relevant spaces to your niche (including other blogs through comments and guest posts, through social media sites etc)
  • Read thisBuilding Your Personal Brand – One ‘Straw’ at a Time
  • Identify other key players in your niche, build relationships with them, make them and what they do improved by how you interact with them, allow them to promote and launch you when the time is right
  • stick with it for the long haul – others will fall away in time and you’ll remain – people respect longevity
  • have something to say – don’t just report the news in your niche, build on it, interpret it, have an opinion on and be a thought leader
  • be proactive – always be on the look out for ways that you can leverage opportunities that come your way. Don’t let success come to you, go and get it

What would you add to my 3 minute post? How do you strive to build credibility through your blog?

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Jewel says:

    Credibility, may looked at in terms of what you are talking about and your knowledge of expertise on the subject you are communicating. This would require that you are up to date with info that would benefit your community.
    just my thought

  2. Sueblimely says:

    I think these are more of a precursor to your list rather than an addition:

    * Be prepared to work hard and consistently
    * Have confidence in yourself

  3. Frugal Dad says:

    In the beginning, don’t turn down media requests for interviews, article links, etc, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant. Even the smallest media outlet taking an interest in your story, or a post on your blog, adds credibility in the eyes of the average reader. Over time those media outlets will become more and more recognizable and soon you could be a feature story in a media that is popular with your niche.

    Ask to join forums where those key players Darren refers to hang out. Assuming they let you in, don’t spam your link or beg for a template review, simply become part of the community and soak up everything you can like a giant sponge. Once they see you hanging around and contributing you will begin to earn some respect, and might even catch a break from a link in one of their roundups.

  4. Nick Ohrn says:

    This is very timely for me. I’m actively looking to build my brand and establish myself as a reliable source for information in a particular community. I think that establishing myself as such will help me with my goals in business and personal life.

  5. Bash Bosh says:

    I think that main factor for that is to be nice and polite to other visitors/customers. Peoples knows how to pay you back all attention and they know to appreciate nice behavior!

    Don’t distract precious users from yourself. Always be nice with anyone.

  6. WolfGirl says:

    I’m curious to know long it took for some of you to build a credible reputation (answers will vary I understand)? Also, did “activity” widgets, social networking links and such on your blog help with that?

  7. Sheamus says:

    I suspect credibility is a lot like respect; you can’t really build it – you have to earn it.

  8. Carole Cohen says:

    Write good content and make sure to write about what others want to read…something that becomes apparent by what draws comments on your blog. Sure you can write about what appeals to you, that tells people who you are, but don’t forget what content appeals to others.

  9. Darren Rowse says:

    wolfGirl – I’m not sure I can put a time on it for me as it’s something that has gradually grown over time. I guess it’s sort of a continuum that you move along with different readers at a different pace. For some readers they trust you the moment they come across simply because its on the web (some people believe everything they read), for others it takes years before they trust you fully (because they DON’T believe anything they read on the web).

    But in general I look at it this way – it’s the same for me as with normal friendships – the more time I spend with another person the more I get to know who they are and what they are on about. Out of this I can make a judgement on how much trust I give them. On a blog if you ‘spend time’ with your readers every day for a year or two its amazing how much of a relationship builds up.

  10. Corvida says:

    I really liked:
    “have something to say – don’t just report the news in your niche, build on it, interpret it, have an opinion on and be a thought leader”

    I’ll definitely try to keep this in mind when blogging. It could make a huge difference.

  11. WolfGirl says:

    Thanks Sheamus and Darren….totally clear now.

    What about “activity” widgets, social networking links and such on your blog to help with earning credibility?

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  13. Stephanie says:

    Assuming credible means trustworthy, does one gain credibility for accuracy over integrity? I’m more attracted to blogs that come across as honest versus all-knowing. I also like posts that challenge my thinking and spark conversation. I don’t think bloggers need to have all the answers, I think they need to be engaging, passionate, open-minded, and likable. Of course we are all motivated in different ways.

  14. Sheamus says:

    I agree Stephanie; if anything, I find blogs that operate as if they are an absolute authority to be generally offputting.

    Nobody has all the answers, after all. Just their version of the truth.

  15. Stephanie says:

    That’s true Sheamus. We live in the gray. Thanks to SmallFishMedia and Darren for triggering those thoughts.

  16. Barry Hurd says:

    I would add that you not only have to identify with niche players, but also build a network of niche testimonial. Ultimately I think that the pay it forward type of mentality has a grand effect online.

  17. Fabien says:

    I appreciate your response to my question Darren, thank you very much. Your points are very good and I cannot fault them, they make sense and I will certainly put them to good use. I have a few tips of my own that I think are important when trying to build credibility as well as presence online.

    Participate on blogs. An essential part of developing a presence online is by participating actively and heavily on blogs, most of the time, the larger the blog the better – just make sure your comment is of a very high standard so you don’t get drowned out in an array of praise the blogger style comments. By constantly being a commenter on big blogs, people will start to notice you and your site more, you can build your brand further by going to sites that choose to display an avatar for you alongside your comment.

    Release a few free products that are valuable to readers. You can do this in order to attract people to your blog and give them free, quality content when they sign up to your sites’ newsletter. By doing this you are showing your readership that you have the ability to release a 30 or so page report that consists of rock solid content, which will no doubt be of value to them in their blogging endeavors. Now that they have something from your blog, it is one up on many other blogs and you are beginning to build a better relationship/rapport with the reader.

    Show that you can attract authority figures by getting interviews with them. This is a technique used by many people, it involves getting highly coveted interviews with big name bloggers like Darren Rowse, John Chow, Aaron Wall etc…By getting these interviews, you are showing your reader that you have the ability to attain these interviews with so called ‘A-listers’ or ‘high profile bloggers’. People admire this and will remember and respect you for it.

    A custom blog design also has the potential to draw in more readers and give you a credibility boost. The readers/viewers see that you have a professional looking web destination. If the blog design is good enough – you may be getting some enquiries in your email inbox as well. In the end, credibility comes back to longevity and quality content as you pointed out Darren, and this is one of the most significant points to remember.

  18. Pentad says:

    As an authority in a field, communicating truth is important. This is sometimes not always what people want to hear, but many times necessary to know. Being an over-the-top cheezy salesperson does not always gain the trust of people. They get enough of that around the Web.

  19. Stephanie says:

    Interestingly enough, I just came across an interesting post on charm versus accuracy: http://www.overcomingbias.com/2008/04/charm-beats-acc.html

  20. Ann says:

    I love to use my blog as a personal journal. However, when it comes to networking or my building credibility I like to use some thing separate. I used personavita.com to create an online portfolio. I like it because you can list your goals, achievements and work history with others validating your credentials. I think that helps build credibility. Blogs are great, I just think persoanvita sets you apart from just another blog.