Sunday, September 27, 2009

Enhancing One's Credibility

By Sammy Jo Flinn

While researching the topic of credibility, I stumbled across various articles that questioned whether or not they were giving accurate information or feeding me lies of what the writer simply believed.  There are also numerous leaders in the United States that give information but how do you know if they are creditable?  There are many ways that you can enhance your credibility and it is pretty easy to do so. Whether you give excellent sources by using proper citation techniques or have your information in an orderly manner that it is easy to read and find what the reader or listener is looking for. In this blog I have included some strategies that anyone can use to enhance their credibility with some persuasion.

Dr. Nancy Snow said that "Persuasion is an essential, indispensable feature of human interaction," and to enhance your credibility with persuasion there must be some facts or evidence to back your statement. There are many ways to do this by explaining your background and qualifications to your reader as well as being well-prepared and organized. Now think of one name of someone that you respect, look up to and would follow. Let's take The President of the United States, Obama. What makes people look up him, follow him and trust him with the power of this country? He has to have some sort of credibility. Some ways that President Obama does this is first by adopting a language style that is suitable to his audience and the occasion. For the recent election, his campaign slogan was "Yes we can." This use of persuasion earned Obama millions of followers. In his speech the night of the primary in New Hampshire, Obama uses the phrases "you came out tonight" or "with your voices, you made it possible" and "we are ready" to show the listeners and followers that this campaign wasn't just about him being the President of the United States, it was about you, me and us as a people coming together. This form of persuasion is a great way to get followers and enhance your credibility.

Another easy way that you may enhance your credibility is being well prepared and organized. This is a way that a website with information on it can gain credibility. One website that is extremely organized and well prepared is At the top of the page you can search for any article that you need. If you typed in "health care," you get about nine articles that are related to this topic. The one relating titled "Can I get too much anti-oxidant?" first puts the reader in the title and gets their attention. The article itself there is information about the author, not only just her name but her title, "Dr. Melina Jampolis, Diet and Fitness Expert." Right there you know that they have credibility because they are stating their title right in the beginning of the article. In the article, however it relates to the reader, using the personable approach. Talking straight to the reader makes them feel like you care, and gives them a sense that what you are saying is true. This feeling may also lead the reader to recommend your website/ article to someone else and then you have the chain reaction occur.

Finally the last way you can enhance your credibility is establishing trustworthiness by demonstrating that you have your listener's interest at heart. In an article from titled "How to avoid gaining the Freshmen 15," the title in itself is targeted toward the reader, especially freshmen in college. Within the article it gives you various tips about how to avoid this plague including a standard diet plan that could work for you even if you live on campus and have to eat from the local cafeteria. This gives the article credibility because they are in the readers shoes and they are relating to them.

            These three ways can definitely persuade your readers to think that you are creditable. Whether it's being organized and easy to read or just by relating to the reader and being in their shoes. Readers really listen to what the writer says and if you are a good persuader, than you will be able to gain some decent credibility.

Citations/ Websites Used:

Video about Barack Obama and his speech including quotes from reading.

Article about “How to avoid Freshmen 15” / how the writer gets credibility from relating

Miller,B (2009). How to avoid the Freshmen 15. Retrieved from

“How to become a persuasive person” Also includes 10 guidelines to enhance one’s credibility

Snow, N (2003). How to become a persuasive person. Retrieved from

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