Some websites charge to tell you this secret but here I am telling you for FREE.
There is a huge debate among various scholars and various conceptualisations about credibility but most define it as as "believability".
Some authors have come out with the terms ‘webelievability’ to refer to “the degree to which people judge online information as credible”. Of course we cannot discount the credbility of the source - the blogger when it comes to blogs.
Looking at the credibility of the source, Credibility has been shown to be composed of
- trustworthiness and
However, the next question is how do bloggers gain this credibility. This is where it gets interesting. Stanford Persuasive Tech Lab has published a list of ten guidelines to boost your web site's credibility.
Some are not even experts at all but somehow were able to get this perceived credibility and eventually became an "expert". I know of a couple of guys who ultimately went on to become popular speakers even though they didn't have either the professional or educational qualifications but just on the basis of their popularity of their blogs. Some of them have regular columns in magazines and even lecture at Universities with professors sitting in the audience. That's amazing isn't it.
It is interesting to note that many popular bloggers including John Chow don't really follow some of the points listed (for example, many of them carry ads including pop-ups) but they still continue to receive thousands of visitors. I guess that's where branding comes in. It also provides an interesting insight into the human behaviour. Once you get famous, the traffic has a snowball effect. Everyone wants a piece of you.
How you get that break is really important and sometimes it is by pure chance but often due to talent. I saw this with popular Malaysian blogger Kenny Sia when he exploded on the Malaysian blogging scene with his original brand of humour (his big coconuts) and of course his (in)famous Xiaxue pose. Now's he's Internationally known and his blog averages about 14k visits daily.
The lucky break may occur due to a mention in the press, magazine or a mention by another celebrity blogger. For example, a small mention by the ProBlogger can do wonders for your blog traffic.
But as they say, not everyone is lucky and sometimes you have to slog it out for several years before you get famous just by your sheer effort.