C-Suite Network™

Best Practices Entrepreneurship Management Skills Women In Business

Building Credibility for the Win

Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart. It takes guts, a rock solid belief in yourself and patience. Success is not going to happen overnight, you’ve got to work. Hard. I started my coaching business three years ago. I floundered for a while with my message (too broad) because I wanted to help all the people. I switched gears a few times with regard to my niche (not specific enough) because I wanted to help all the people. You see the recurring theme here – I wanted to help all the people. The problem was, none of the people knew who I was (most of them still don’t!). So how was I supposed to get them to buy my coaching services and book me to speak at their events if I was an unknown?

I needed to get visible. I needed to build some credibility.

Over the last few years I’ve focused on every aspect of my business with one major thing in mind – building credibility by establishing myself as an expert in my field. You may be wondering how one does that – build credibility when they’re new in their business and have no idea where to start. Well, my friend, today is your lucky day because I’m gifting you with my top 5 tips for gaining credibility in your field. Hopefully this will help you accelerate your success and bring you clients!!

1. Network. Research and attend events in your area where your ideal client lives. Join associations. Get outside of your comfort zone and mingle with real people. Shake hands, pass business cards, talk yourself up like it’s nobody’s business. You are your greatest asset, use it.

2. Leverage Social Media. Get active in all of the social channels you hang out in. Create a Facebook Business Page and if it makes sense for your business, create a private Facebook Group for your followers. Join other groups that are relevant to your expertise and start building connections there. Over on Instagram and Twitter follow people/influencers you admire and build a relationship via likes, comments and direct messages. The lead time for client conversion is longer as opposed to in person networking, but the reach is greater.

3. Give it away for free. Seriously. Offer free coaching calls to anyone who will take one. Volunteer to speak for free at local events that are related to your business. Give away free advice, tips, and tools whenever you can. This shows your prospects you mean it when you tell them you’re there to help AND by providing useful information to them, you’re building the know, like, trust factor.

4. Contribute. If you write a blog (who doesn’t?) then you’re ahead of the curve. Reach out to publications and blogs that are in line with your message and offer to write articles and blog posts for them. Build a relationship with the editors so they promote your pieces. Become a go to authority for them. Then you can go write your book!

5. Be a Guest. This is one of my favorite things to do – being a guest on a podcast, video show or any kind of live media is so much fun! It allows you the opportunity to have a great conversation with a live person who is interested in your product or service. It showcases your expertise and gives the listener/viewer a flavor for your voice.

Credibility is so important when you’re building your personal and business brand. Everything I do when it comes to my brand includes my hashtag #WhyAmIYelling on it. In the last three years, I’ve partnered with some of the leading names in the media – Forbes, The TODAY Show, Thrive Global and HuffPost to name a few. I’ve been on a ton of podcasts, video and radio shows. I’m continually curating my network of experts, collaborators and mentors to help me continue to grow and expand my knowledge and business. And I wrote a book. Phew – that’s a lot!

And while some days it feels like I’m behind the curve on where I want to be with my level of success. The reality is that I’m exactly where I should be. So if you’re feeling like you’re not getting the results you want (yet), keep going. Stay focused on building your relationships and getting visible. You may think no one is noticing, but I can assure you, a lot of people are.

Best Practices Entrepreneurship Personal Development Women In Business

Human Connection Wins Every Time

I started my entrepreneurial journey three years ago. After spending a few decades as a corporate worker bee, I realized that I wanted more for myself and my family. Clearly the obvious choice would be to quit my high paying, secure job to go back to school and start a business being a life coach. Several people thought I was crazy and others were supportive. I knew in my gut that I was making the right decision. But because I had no idea how to actually launch a business, my learning curve was – let’s just say – extended.

Starting a business is no joke. You need a lot of hutzpah to do it. You have to believe in yourself and your mission so completely, you’re basically willing to lay everything you have on the line to succeed. And if you’re like me, working out of your living room, well then, you have to figure out how to network the right way. In the beginning, I was spending a lot of time networking online, because everyone was talking about how easy it was to make money over the interwebs. I made “friends” from all over the world in networking groups and cultivated my own following on social media. It garnered me a few clients and semi-successful product launches. It wasn’t bringing in the big bucks that’s for sure.

In order to get my business moving and working in my favor, I had to get out of my lonely living room and start meeting people. So I attended conferences, set up coffee dates with other entrepreneurs, and created initiatives that encouraged human connection. It only took about a million mistakes to realized that I am more productive and much happier when I’m connecting and collaborating with real life people.

To say I’ve learned more in the last three years about myself and my abilities would be an understatement. You truly have no idea what you’re capable of until you have no choice but to confront your fears and failures in order to turn them into success. I also learned that my seemingly extroverted self is also a bit of an introvert. I don’t love walking into a room full of strangers and making small talk. But with the help of a daily mindset practice, I’ve been able to change that view. Now I veiw walking into a room as a clean slate so to speak. A chance to learn about people I may not have ever had the opportunity to meet if it wasn’t for my current situation. An opportunity to connect and collaborate with like minded individuals, a way to make my brand more visible and to help others do the same with theirs.

We’ve become a society dependent on technology, which is great in some cases. In others, not so much. For a while we let human connection fall by the wayside. We stayed glued to our phones, worried that we might miss something important. Meanwhile something more important was sitting right in front of us the whole time. Human Connection is the most important aspect in building a business. It allows you to maintain focus, get feedback and exchange ideas. So get out there! And if you’re feeling trepidation about promoting yourself and your business, give me a call. I’ll be your wing-woman, because Human Connection wins every time.