Your website is a haven of information. It may be a personal blog of sorts, a site talking about your brand offering services or products. With so many websites around the world, many of which are protected by anti-censorship laws and free speech, anything can be posted online without any proof of authenticity.
Bad sources reap bitter fruits for the audiences and will slowly weaken the following. People come back a second time only when they find true and solid knowledge they can actually rely on.
So with all the adulterated knowledge found online and offline, how do we ensure we are using genuine sources for our research?
DO YOU FEEL HOMELY?
The basic thing to do would be to start with sources you are familiar with, sites that you have often used and know provides accurate knowledge. We’re pretty sure Nat Geo wouldn’t tell us that a lion is pink and a giraffe is short. Animal Planet wouldn’t tell us Dinosaurs still exist. We all know we can trust sites such as BBC, Times, for news. Government sites are another reliable source of knowledge.
RAIN CHECK ON THIS DATE?
Always check for dates. The older an article, lesser are the chances for it to be valid. The world is changing rapidly and so are science, art and current affairs. What was true yesterday may be proven wrong today. So stick to the latest posts you can get. If you find a few dead links on a site, you probably should abandon it and move on. We’re looking for Jetsons here and not Flintstones.
CREDENTIALS SPEAK CREDIBILITY
You wouldn’t want to take advice from an artist on how to cure your tummy ache. You would want to look for certified sources. Besides, it is even better if the person who has written the content provides credentials you can verify. Knowledge from professional sources speak a lot about the effort you put into your research.
TRUSTED SOURCES CAN BE BIASED!
Even original websites can be biased. If you are writing an article about a particular brand of car you would want to know the pros and cos, scan every little detail before you can do justice to your article. Searching for information only from the brand’s website may narrow you down to a very biased opinion. Something to think about, right?
LET’S PLAY DIG DUG
Learn to do your research wisely and thoroughly. Dig deeper even if you find a credible source. The writer whose information you’re relying on may have written other pieces. Go through them and look at the consistency, the flow, the opinion they have, whether it looks trustworthy to you.
Legit sites make sure their spelling and grammar is intact as well. Don’t trust the immediate source you find. Also, don’t forget that libraries still exist and books can be a source of knowledge very much close to being credible. Gather enough information before you sift through them and come to a conclusion. In short, play detective and play it well.
Once you have followed all these steps, you can decide for yourself what to keep and what to let go of. The end result of your research in finding the right knowledge will definitely be something you can be proud. Eventually you will have established yourself as a thought leader through your originality exclusive to your content/services, and you will find that marketing becomes super easy.
Become the trusted source people come to and also refer to. This is sure to expand your reputation as a credible and knowledgeable source.On the journey of blogger to thought leadership through #LeaderChatter all April. Come back for more!