In public speaking, as well as in your other marketing and personal branding efforts, it pays to leave a strong first impression.
A recent article from Entrepreneur offers a clever way to establish authority right off the bat…
Have someone else introduce you.
It doesn't have to be someone who has clout with your audience, but it should be someone who can tell an honest, compelling story or anecdote about you.
This approach builds social proof, and helps to seed the idea in the audience's mind that what you have to say is important.
This can be the key to establishing yourself as an influencer in your industry or niche.
Although the article centers around public speaking engagements, you can also apply these concepts elsewhere in your marketing.
If personal branding is something that makes sense for you and your business, this approach to “covert influence” can be just what you need to establish credibility among people who don't know who you are yet.
Let’s say that you just have not networked enough to have a celebrity or the promoter introduce you — not even to mention your name once. What do you do?
It’s not the end of the world. You can always apply covert influence to your introduction.
Given that you do not have a famous or familiar face to transition power or transfer credibility over to you, you can always have a client or an affiliate introduce you by selling you to the audience with their own authentic story about you.
A client of mine and founder of the Bold Brave Women Movement, Mai Vu, speaks at a number of events — many where the audience knows or has heard of her, and some where attendees are meeting her for the first time.
No matter her situation, she always looks to have a member of her community, that she has impacted or dramatically changed the life of, make an introduction for her.
Mai says, “Everything is so polished nowadays so when someone the audience doesn’t expect introduces you and speaks from the heart, they will be able to raise your credibility and trust with the audience, and sell you in a way you cannot do yourself.”
That’s covert influence.
You can pick up more useful tips for coming across as authoritative over at Entrepreneur.