I’m the best at what I do. Do you believe me?

Well, you might assume I’m telling the truth because I’m writing this post on stuff that you might find interesting. But does that really mean that what I say is credible? Apparently, in some ways, it does.

BJ Fogg, an expert on persuasion in the virtual world, explains that people perceive credibility in four key ways. Here’s how to leverage them to increase your hireability:

1. Presumed Credibility

This type of credibility is based on the assumptions people hold. For instance, you might leverage the assumption that authors are experts and get published. You don’t necessarily have to write a whole book either – simply blog or contribute to a newsletter in your industry.

Working for a well-known company also makes for great presumed expertise. If you soak yourself in their prestigious afterglow, potential employers might assume that you too have the kahunas for huge success.

2. Reputed Credibility

This is your reputation – other people’s experience of you. And it matters. Telling you I’m the best at what I do is suspicious, but hearing it from someone else is evidence. In other words: Get as many testimonials, referrals, and endorsements as you can. (Use envisionme.co.za.)

Contact clients or colleagues who know your work well and request a recommendation. Don’t be afraid to advise them on the kind of info you’d like them to focus on either.

Speaking in public is another good way for others to endorse you as an expert. Find writers in your field of expertise and give them your contact details for interviews, or reach out to professional organisations in your industry to volunteer to speak at events.

3. Surface Credibility

How credible do you look? Is your website/blog up-to-date? Are your business cards appealing and well-designed? And what about your appearance – do you look professional? Each of these elements can influence how people perceive you. Look the part.

Also, don’t be afraid to have vision. In an interview, when a prospective employer wants to know if you’ll add value to their team, make suggestions that demonstrate how you can offer new solutions. Sharing your ideas and opinions will demonstrate leadership potential.

4. Earned Credibility

This is the real thing – when you actually demonstrate your expertise. It isn’t a quick fix, but it’ll earn you the bucks… if you do it right.

Where the other three types of credibility may get you through the front door, earned credibility will ensure that you stay there. And the way to do this is by delivering consistent value. The more value you add, the more credibility you will develop – strengthening your authority in your industry.