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How to Position Yourself as an Expert Even If Nobody Has Heard of You You don't need fancy credentials to prove you're worth hiring.

By Joel Erway Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Launching a new business can be a daunting task and entrepreneurs need to be creative with how they stand out in their market.

Many entrepreneurs feel they need credentials, certifications or endorsements before they can get paying clients.

Related: 10 Tips on How to Become a Thought Leader

As someone who's worked closely with hundreds of entrepreneurs over the past three years using webinars as the primary client-attraction vehicle, many of our clients have little to no name recognition when they get first get started.

Here's how to quickly position yourself as an authority that will command attention from your prospective audience before you have a laundry list of testimonials.

1. Establish authority like an attorney.

Many entrepreneurs think that their prospects or customers deeply care about who they are. For the most part this simply isn't true. Your customers are selfish. They really only care about themselves. Above all, they want to know how to solve the current problems they are experiencing right now. This single piece of intel will leverage your ability to be viewed as an instant authority when your audience sees that you truly understand their problems.

Think of your marketing like a case being presented by a prosecutor to a jury. Your case should include clear, hard, indisputable research and evidence that a real problem exists in your marketplace that points to only one reasoning: that you (the expert) have the solution.

This is called an "opportunity gap."

When I market our webinar services, we reference third party data from the Content Marketing Institute that shows webinar marketing as one of the most effective forms of marketing, yet one of the least utilized. Like a good attorney we use these "opportunity gaps" to present our case for why we believe businesses should be utilizing webinars to generate more qualified leads and sales.

I recommend finding your industry association to see if they perform similar research that makes your case for you. Or, Statista is another great starting point.

Related: 5 Ways to Stand Out From the Crowd, According to Entrepreneur's Editor-in-Chief

2. Create a quick win to prove that you're worth listening to.

It's very easy to get overwhelmed with all of the different things you could be doing to market yourself such as blogging, lead magnets, email marketing, sales appointments, etc.

Yes, I believe they all have their place as you grow. But, it's important to generate as many qualified leads as possible especially when you're first starting out.

The fastest way to build trust and rapport with your potential customers is to give them results in advance. The best webinars our clients have hosted require attendees to take some form of action during the presentation so they can get some sort of result immediately.

For example, one of my clients hosted a webinar that required the audience members to post a simple message on social media to start their list growth. The attendees on the webinar who followed the instructions and got results immediately won my client's trust. It also resulted in converting more customers.

Related: 10 Credible Ways to Show the Media You're an Expert Worth Interviewing

3. Create demand for yourself.

Urgency is one of the best ways to start gaining momentum with your marketing. However, some marketers have misused this to create "false demand" in unethical ways.

Even if your calendar is empty, here is the best way I've found to leverage urgency in your marketing to incentivize your audience to take action: Offer an additional bonus if the prospect schedules a call or takes action with you today. Make it simple to deliver -- like a case study or report -- so that it doesn't become overwhelming for you to fulfill. As you start to book appointments with new leads, let them know that you'll send them the case study after your call so they have something to look forward to.

Becoming an expert in the eyes of your audience doesn't have to be complicated. If your audience believes that you truly understand their problems they will naturally seek you out for a solution. You'd be surprised at how relevant you become to potential customers when you implement these simple techniques.

Joel Erway

Founder of The Webinar Agency

Joel Erway is founder of The Webinar Agency, which helps businesses build live and automated webinars. He is also the host of two podcasts, Sold With Webinars and Experts Unleashed.

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