Sensible Credibility is Sensory Credibility

I woke up this morning with one thought: “faith comes from hearing”… My customers need to hear about me and hear from me if they are to ‘believe’ in what I do.  My customers are amazing but they are not, on the whole, mind-readers.  As soon as I am out-of-sight, I am, unfortunately, out-of-mind.

Which leads me to the flip-side of the coin of credibility: “Seeing is believing”.  If “out-of-sight, out-of-mind” is a truth, then this also might be a truth: “in-sight, in-mind”.  Where does this lead me?  It leads me to two decisions this morning that I believe will serve you well too, if you are in business.  The decisions are to place more relevant content on 1) SoundCloud, and 2) YouTube.

I am not sure how well MySpace is doing nowadays, but I know that SoundCloud and YouTube are the ‘go-to’ sites for audio and visual content respectively.  Unlike Facebook’s really confusing setup, both SoundCloud and YouTube are relatively easy to use and then to embed in your own sites.  They are also often the first places people search for content, inspiration, and entertainment.

My idea this morning then is that people will develop far more belief in your and my credibility if they can ‘sense’ how credible we are.  And by ‘sense’ I specifically mean if they can sample how our offerings ‘sound’ and take a ‘look’ for themselves.  Faith comes from hearing, and seeing is believing!!

I’m pretty sure you’re the same as me – we get bombarded with a thousand emails and links to websites that make wonderful claims.  I would far prefer to ‘hear’ what an organisation or an individual has to ‘say’ for themselves… and, even better, to ‘see and hear’ through the medium of video before I commit.

Opportunity Knocks… did you ‘hear’ that?

A good example has happened to me twice in the area of online NLP and Hypnosis Courses.  Both companies’ marketing material was wonderfully seductive.  When I received their CDs, however, the audio was astonishingly bad.  Thus we have an amazing opportunity knocking at our door because much of the YouTube and Audio content out there representing companies is very, very  poorly made.  I had enormous Buyer’s Remorse once I actually got to hear the content.  The result is that I am very unlikely to ever again buy any audio based training until I hear a sample.   In fact, I shouldn’t buy again until I hear, simply because of the Chinese Proverb, “if someone strikes you once, shame on them; if they strike you twice, shame on you!!”

So, here is where we can turn the situation around.  There will always be elements of what your organisation does that you can give away without compromising your revenue stream.  If your potential clients can hear or see this in advance of any purchase, you and I will be ahead of the mainstream – and our quality will make us stand out from the crowd.  Our clients will see us as credible – that our offering literally ‘makes sense’ – and will begin to trust us.

And, “Action!”

And so to action.  I’d encourage you to look into setting up a SoundCloud account, if you haven’t already got one, and then get down to recording some Podcasts that give potential clients good and practical advice.  I’d also encourage you to do something special for existing clients as a ‘thank you’.  This will keep you in-sight, in-mind, remembering that they’ve already acted upon their faith in you.

Secondly, check out the new YouTube format.  There are so many ways you can link SoundCloud and YouTube to your other Social Media channels such as Twitter and Facebook.  Video content takes much more care and attention, but there is an excellent short-cut: Camtasia Studio from Techsmith.  Camtasia is a video screen-capture programme for both Mac and PC, and is a super way to add Keynote or PowerPoint slides to an audio presentation.  If you then provide a link for potential clients and existing customers to download a PDF of your presentation, you’ve got the best of all worlds.  SlideShare can help with this last point.

[Of course, like most of these professional companies, Techsmith will let you download full working trial versions of their software.  So if you were to prepare three slideshows and record the audio in advance, and then activate a trial, you’d really make the most of this grace period… and you, yourself, could see and hear if it works for you!  And, no, I’m not on commission!]

Here’s my own action plan for the next three months:

The cost?  Your time and ideas if you are comfortable with recording your own audio and video.  No expensive agencies!  And if you’d like any free advice – I’ve been recording and making videos for a while… and I’ve made lots of expensive mistakes that I could help you avoid!!!

Thank you for your time and your attention – I am nothing without an audience!

Oh, and by the way, I’ve just passed the cat sprawled out on the bed. I stroked the cat and made the noises the cat likes, and what did I get?  Purring!  I didn’t need further convincing – the cat was a happy customer…

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