Building Credibility for Your Small Business

Building Credibility for Your Small Business

by Jay Blazensky, December 2009

Generate Buzz

"Word of mouth" and referral marketing have long been two of the most successful means for small businesses to launch a service or market their wares. The evolution of blogging and social networks such as Facebook and Twitter are tools that must be taken advantage to maximize word of mouth marketing. Both are free and provide great exposure, why wait?

Go Local

Partnering with your town and other local businesses is another low cost way to establish a meaningful presence. The local Chamber of Commerce is a great place to start and many cities have regional "Meetup" groups designed to share best practices and create a forum to partner. Sponsoring a high school sporting event with a promotion showing your website gives a call to action previously unavailable that makes this another great way to bond with your local community.

Toll Free 800 Number

Make a statement with a toll-free 800 number and customized phone and fax features. It's not about saving the cost of a long distance call. It's about letting your customers know that:

  • The customer comes first and it will be a good experience
  • You care that they can reach you
  • Your products are reliable and you stand by them
  • Your business is substantial

Be sure to use a credible company with experience in the field. For full disclosure I work at RingCentral, which specializes in exactly these services. So I'm more than a little bit biased in my RingCentral recommendation. Go with the company that you have the most confidence in.

Customer Testimonials

Nothing generates credibility like a strong testimonial from a customer centered at the heart of your target market. Ideally you want multiple references from each of your most important verticals or demographics. Make it easy for your prospects to connect the dots and come to the buying conclusion you have an opportunity to influence.

Email Marketing

Once you have an email list that you've compiled or purchased, email marketing is a fantastic tool to promote all of your key messages. Be sure to always add new testimonials, toll free number, Facebook page and information about your next local meetup group to any other fresh content like emails.