You wouldn’t let a surgeon operate on you without certifiable credentials, or a “lawyer” who hasn’t passed the bar defend you in court, so why would you expect a person sitting at a computer somewhere to have faith in your expertise? Sure, you can throw up an "About Me" page that tells people who you are, what you do, and why you’re qualified in your field - and you should - but the next step is to build your online portfolio and give potential customers insight into why they should choose you over the next search result that comes up.
If you mostly do business on the web and have an ineffective website, you are not just putting yourself at a disadvantage, you may be putting yourself out of business. Your website should be the most useful web result that comes up for you in a search. It should have all the information anyone needs to make a decision as to whether you have the skills and services they need. That doesn’t mean a consumer won’t be proactive and look up off-site reviews, but that should be the only thing they go seeking. If they have to go elsewhere to find out that your graphics company does book cover design, they may find another company first.
Your website also provides your first and best chance to demonstrate your expertise. Many companies do this through blogs that stick to their niche. The blog for regional grocery store Wegmans, for instance, keeps customers up-to-date on changes in the company, while also providing detailed information that demonstrates their expertise on their products.
Those interested in web design careers should keep expertise in mind when building websites. It’s not all about the design. Design is just the pretty package. It’s the information inside that matters. Even if someone wears the right scrubs and has the right degree, you're going to ask a few questions about how many surgeries they have performed and their success rate before you let them cut into your brain.
As untamed as the land can be, filled as it is with ramblings, in-jokes, and twerking videos, social media is also a powerful world in which to share your expertise. Even established businesses have seen the advantage of joining the social media circus. There are few major businesses that don’t have accounts on Facebook and Twitter, and some longterm companies, such as competitors Lowes and Home Depot, have taken to YouTube with expert videos.
Observe basic social media etiquette - essentially, treat people online as you would if they were in front of you - and your social channels can help you make connections, show off your know-how, and help others.
Courting attention for your expertise doesn’t have to take up all your time or pull you away from other essential business tasks, though. A creative talent agency can provide you with the connections and opportunities you need. If you’re ready to start branding yourself an expert, contact us today to learn more.