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Transparency: The Key Factor to Beating Your Competitors

Transparency: The Key Factor to Beating Your CompetitorsTransparency has become the The Key Factor to Beating Your Competitors.

And it is certainly one of the very best ways to brand yourself, as distinct from your competitors.

That’s why it’s risen to top priority for businesses.

How Your Transparency Gives Guidance To Your Prospects

Just think of this:

You are shopping on Amazon and want to purchase something.

But before you even put the item in your cart, you look for reviews.

How many stars did this product or company get?

More important, how many people have written reviews?

How many have chimed in with pros and cons about the product?

We do this so we can make up our minds as to whether or not to purchase the product.

Or if we might be better off searching for another one.

But whatever a prospect decides to do, we need to display this kind of transparency in order for them to trust us.

Your competition might be trying to hide from this kind of transparency, or to obscure it.

Another Example of The Transparency Key

You are looking for a medical specialist.

So you research the credentials of various physicians.

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You consider how long they have been practicing, their professional affiliations and board certifications.

You take a peek at how many surgeries they’ve done related to your issue.

Don’t forget to see how many times they’ve been sued for malpractice.

And, of course you look at their photo.

Yes… you look and see how you will resonate with them.

Finally, if not primarily… you start reading client reviews.

“This doc has a great bedside manor.”

“He told the procedure cost, but then I got a bill for double the amount.”

“You’d have to be crazy to go this doc.”



That kind of stuff.

The more transparent you are, the more people are willing to follow you more closely.

Your competition frequently tries to manipulate or hide these things.

How Transparency Works

I use these examples to bring to light how transparency works.

The more you can shed light on what you do, how you do it, what people say about you (testimonials and reviews)… the more people can make an informed decision as to whether or not to follow you, hire you or buy from you.

Now, your competitors are very likely to be doing the opposite.

They are often trying to appear bigger, better, smarter or cheaper than they really are.

Not until people start working with them, do they get the true story of what their product, service or brand is all about.

This gives you an opportunity to do better.

Be painstakingly transparent and honest with your brand in order to beat your competitors.

If your product or service is at the high end of the spectrum for you niche, tell people it is.

Then tell them why it is.

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Maybe you give them more content, or extra perks.

Let them know that.

If your product is cheaper than your competitor’s is, then explain that is.

If you are selling someone else’s product as an affiliate, and everyone else is selling it, too… let people know how they will benefit by buying from you.

Maybe you have special bonuses, or offer a free consultation or whatever.

Let people know.

Be Transparent About Your Personal Brand

If you’re promoting your personal brand, make sure people really know who you are.

You should have a great bio or “About Me” page on your blog or website.

Transparency: The Key Factor to Beating Your Competitors

Too many people gloss over this.

They’re so anxious to put out great content that they overlook the importance of being transparent with who they are.

Did you know that your “About Me” page will probably be the most visited page on your site?

It almost always is.

So what are you relaying to people about who you are and what you do with your “About Me” page?

But don’t just wonder… double check yourself.

Maybe this is a good time to update it.

And don’t forget your photo.


Your photo.

Do you like to follow people who are afraid to show you who they are?

Maybe they have a cartoon instead of their photo.

But even worse, maybe just a logo or generic image.

By hiding from your customers and readers like that, you are putting up a big wall between you and them.

And it is not enough to have a great bio and photo on your blog or website.

You have to have them on all our social media sites also.

And make them congruent… the same.

You don’t want one photo of yourself on Twitter, and a different one on your blog.

It creates a credibility gap.

Be Transparent Everywhere and in Everything You Do

When people follow you, or consider buying your product or service, they will look you up first.

You know, a simple Google search.

So do your best to be “everywhere” to get yourself noticed ahead of your competitors.

That gets people from all over the internet, onto your website or blog.

That’s when they get to see how well you are strutting your stuff… but even more importantly… who the heck you are.

They will look at your comment section to see how you handle yourself there.

Do you interact with people?

Do you give them your attention?

Or do you just jot down some 3 word replies and move on?

All these things show people who you are, and how you are likely to treat them if they do business with you.

So put your best foot forward, always.

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Be transparent with how you build your relationships and treat your followers, customers and clients.

They will go to your social sites to see more about who you are, too.

Be Transparent on your Social Media Sites

If you are doing, say a Facebook Live Stream or Periscope talk… people will notice how you speak and relate to others.

But they will also notice when technology screws up, as it always has a way of doing.

So then they get to see how you handle yourself under pressure.

Of course, they are always going to look at your images, photos of you.

But not only that.

Also, they’ll pay way more attention to those than to your text status updates.

And yes, they will make their own biased decisions about you based on what they see and hear.

But whether you think you look and sound great or less great or even terrible… the worst thing you can do is hide away and not let people see and hear who you are.

Be transparent.

This is why it is so important when you are writing a blog post to use your own words.

Because being transparent involves giving a little of yourself in the content.

Delivering some of your message via video is also a great way to infuse your personality into your content.

When on social media, it is a great way to show your transparency by video and sometimes your inspirational posts.

Transparency: The Key Factor to Beating Your Competitors

Most of all, if you are your own personal brand… and I know many of you are… then you have to be YOU.

The real you.

Not the protected, secluded or pretend you.

  • But the completely transparent you.
  • You need the confidence to screw up and laugh at yourself.
  • And, you need to stand by your word.

Be yourself.

That’s really how to be a genuine blogger who people love.

And when you offer a product and/or service, the most important thing you need to do is be transparent.

If your product/service… or one you are affiliating… is something you believe in with your whole heart (and I hope you do)….then demonstrate your excitement.

Don’t hold back.

Always be perfectly transparent… and the rest will flow.

Learn More About Donna’s Top Tier Mentoring ProgramTop Tier Coaching

Are you transparent in your business?

Are your competitors?

Tell me about it.

Do you agree with me, that transparency is the key factor to beating your competitors?

After leaving your comment below, share this article on your favorite social sites, too.

I appreciate it 🙂



Donna Merrill
Donna is a well known blogger and creator of "Blogging Magic" - an intensive guide to blogging. "Blogging Magic" is for beginners who are trying to figure out how to bring their blogs to life with tons of visits, comments and social media interaction. It's even for advanced bloggers looking to reach new levels of authority and engagement with their audience.

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32 Responses to Transparency: The Key Factor to Beating Your Competitors

  1. Harry john February 16, 2021 at 2:38 am #

    Thanks for writing such an amazing and informative article. Transparency is the top most way to beat the competitor. Very comprehensive and informative explanation. Thank you for this amazing post, Donna. Love your work!

    • Donna Merrill February 20, 2021 at 1:28 pm #

      Hi Harry,

      Transparency is the best thing one can do especially marketing online. We have to be ourselves and no matter what content we share, it will come from our hearts. Always thinking of what others need to know is the key.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..Do your online prospects trust you?My Profile

  2. Monna Ellithorpe
    May 14, 2018 at 6:33 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    Awesome post and great advice. It is so true about the need to be transparent. Unfortunately, so many people are out to take what they can get, that it forces us to search out and find any reviews, good or bad.

    Many would be better off to be up front and not try to hide. Personally, I won’t search that long for information like I used to. If it’s not readily available and easy to find, I’m gone from their site.

    Thanks so much for everything you share with us.
    Monna Ellithorpe recently posted..As This Canary Flew In to WatchMy Profile

  3. Gaurav kumar Joshi
    May 5, 2018 at 1:18 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I am definitely not a WWE person, but everyone wants to beat their competition. So I rephrase it as winning the competition. Transparency is the key to build trust and get more followers.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Gaurav kumar Joshi recently posted..SEO Content Strategies: A Guide to SuccessMy Profile

  4. Emenike Emmanuel
    May 4, 2018 at 8:39 pm #

    I’m 101% in support of this piece, Donna.

    Without transparency in this online business thing, our success is short-lived.

    Thanks for mentioning various areas where it is very important that we showcase how clean out hands are.

    Emenike Emmanuel recently posted..What It Takes to Build a Robust StartUp Team Like PaystackMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill May 5, 2018 at 3:13 pm #

      Hi Emenike,

      It is so true especially for mentoring..we do have to show how clean our hands are. This is why transparency is a win-win.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Implement The Best Daily Actions For Your Online BusinessMy Profile

      • Emenike Emmanuel
        May 16, 2018 at 12:39 am #

        Donna, sometimes I think I have gone extreme with this transparency thingy. That’s if it has extreme.

        I discourage people from coming into my Social Selling Mastery class if I’m convinced that it’s not what they need most in this stage of their business. Though I lose money when I do that but I win their trust.

        Could they be a balance?

        Emenike Emmanuel recently posted..Why You Should Hire a PPC Professional for AdvertisingMy Profile

        • Donna Merrill June 16, 2018 at 2:27 pm #

          Hi Emenike,

          Now way are you loosing money when you are honest with people. If they are not ready to join your Mastery class, you have to tell them truthfully. Otherwise, they will be disappointed and ask for their money back. You don’t want to build a reputation like that my friend.

          You are on the right track.

          Donna Merrill recently posted..How to Turn Facebook Live into a Sizzling Marketing ToolMy Profile

  5. Mathias Rin
    May 4, 2018 at 10:35 am #

    Transparency can make you stand out from the crowd.

    But it’s scary.

    You are putting yourself out there, being vulnerable.

    People resonate with this vulnerability, which is why it helps to
    build a stronger relationship with your readers.

    But again… it’s not easy. I’m still working on it as I’m sure a lot
    of bloggers are.

    Thanks for the post,

    Mathias Rin recently posted..6 Secrets the Gurus Don’t Want You to KnowMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill May 5, 2018 at 3:07 pm #

      Hi Mathias,

      Indeed, it can be quite scary to put yourself out there. But we do have boundaries. We won’t share everything…just what others need to know.

      I was completely vulnerable years ago and wouldn’t even think of putting my picture up. But for the sake of my business, I just had to get over myself. Once you give yourself a challenge it gets easier.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Implement The Best Daily Actions For Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  6. Moss Clement
    May 3, 2018 at 12:15 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    You just crafted another incredible post on “Transparency.” Why should you be transparent in the first place? It helps you build brand trust with your target market. If they cannot see you or your brand as being transparent, you definitely will lose them. So it is important that you come clean the best way possible in all areas, including in your content, your website’s Home page if your dirt have a static home page, About pages, social media profiles, etc. Let your blog readers and social media followers get to know that you are who you say you are. That will set you up for a long run.

    Thanks Donna, for sharing.

  7. Cori Ramos
    May 2, 2018 at 5:17 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    This is a great reminder for us all. There is no telling what our competitors are doing or saying to appear bigger and better. I tend not to sweat my competitors. I just keep my head down and run my own race and be as transparent as I can be. 🙂

    I think it’s good that readers see who we really are – even the silly side of us. It just makes us more relatable that way.

    I updated my About page a month ago and shared a little more about myself. And now I’m working a plan to revamp my blog to include a welcome video. Just not sure if I want to get in front of the camera of do a voice over on some slides. I just wish I can be comfortable in front of the camera like you. I’m afraid viewers will see the terror in my eyes, LOL! 🙂

    Hope you’re having a great day!

    Cori Ramos recently posted..How To Grow Your Mailing List [Free List Building Workshop]My Profile

    • Donna Merrill May 5, 2018 at 2:52 pm #

      Hi Cori,

      As long as people see who we really are, there is no need to watch the other guy lol. We can beat our competitors by being transparent any day.

      Our about me page always needs updating as we grow. I think getting in front of the camera is the best way to show our true selves. I’ve seen you and you are great!

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Implement The Best Daily Actions For Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  8. Lisa P Sicard
    May 2, 2018 at 4:40 am #

    Hi Donna, great timing with this one. I’m in the middle of redoing my home page and transparency is part of that re-do. I’m focusing more on the about me page as well. You are right about that being one of your most visited pages of your website today. People do want to know who you are and why you can speak about this or that.
    Soon as I get my voice back I’m back on video and podcasting. I think those add to our transparency so people can really get to know us better through vision and hearing our voices. I know I get motivated when I hear Neil Patel on video. Even your last video got me laughing and knowing you better too. Those are important in business too.
    I do have one question: How do you get more recommendations? And if you have them on LinkedIn do you add them to your website too?
    Lisa P Sicard recently posted..How Successful Teams Use Project Management SoftwareMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill May 5, 2018 at 2:46 pm #

      Hi Lisa,

      It is great to know you are getting back on video and podcasting. It is one sure way of showing who we are. Through seeing us and hearing us is a whole different thing than reading what we write.

      It is important for business.

      As for your question: I would say first start to ask people you know (like me) lol. Then whoever you are engaging with try them. Its all about reaching out. Not as simple as that…it takes some courage if you are like me lol.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Implement The Best Daily Actions For Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  9. Marquita Herald
    May 1, 2018 at 1:28 pm #

    I’m glad to see you emphasize the importance of an About Me page Donna. On my blog, it is the #2 stop for visitors so it really is important and worth periodically updating. I also like your point about writing posts in your own words. It takes time to get to that level of comfort, but the more one writes the easier it becomes. Thanks for the reminder and inspiration!
    Marquita Herald recently posted..The Rewards of Embracing DiscomfortMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill May 1, 2018 at 1:45 pm #

      Hi Marquita,

      Absolutely…the more we write the easier it gets to write a blog post. There are endless ideas we can come up with on a niche we love.

      Yes…the About Me page needs to be updated from time to time. We do get many people searching that page before they will ever purchase anything from us.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Implement The Best Daily Actions For Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  10. Hazel Jarrett
    May 1, 2018 at 9:32 am #

    I love this Donna! I absolutely advocate being who you are, being real, being authentic and always being transparent in business.
    Hazel Jarrett recently posted..39 ways to get more mileage out of your existing contentMy Profile

  11. Kathryn Maclean
    May 1, 2018 at 7:34 am #

    Hi Donna
    YOU are a genuine blogger that people love because of your transparency. When you write people listen to you. Because you share with your readers who you are with your personality.
    I think we shared this same sentiment on a comment on my blog Great post my friend. Shared this.

  12. Enstine Muki
    May 1, 2018 at 5:46 am #

    Hey Donna,

    If someone is good at his/her job, why not be transparent?

    The problem is that some folks don’t tell the true stories of their skills. This is even more terrible online with intangible products. They tell you they are SEO experts, social media strategists, traffic gurus and all the rest but their own results are below average.

    Someone with 50 daily blog readers will do a blog post on how to get 5000 daily readers, using faked screen shots of his own result. That’s not being transparent.

    Yes my “About Me” page is one of my most visited pages. It shows my readers want to be sure I’m real and I’m soon adding some more materials on this page to boost my credibility and transparency.

    Yes I’m transparent 😉 and thanks for making us know how relevant this is in business.
    Enstine Muki recently posted..9 money making blog post ideas.Idea #5 got $1000+ for me so quickly!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill May 1, 2018 at 8:36 am #

      Hi Enstine,

      I know you well enough to say you my friend are transparent and know how relevant it is in business. I’ve known you a long time now and can honestly say that you have never steered anyone the wrong way. You tell it like it is all the time. Hey…this is why I hold you in high regard.

      Donna Merrill recently posted..How To Implement The Best Daily Actions For Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  13. Vishwajeet Kumar
    May 1, 2018 at 5:25 am #

    Hello Donna,

    Awesome article. Transparency is definitely important to gain users trust and faith. It is an important way to build trust and authority online. It is certainly a way to beat your competitors as people will more transparency on what you are doing. It also shows how honest you are with your readers and customers as well. Thanks for sharing these helpful tips and insights here.

    Have a Great Day 🙂
    Vishwajeet Kumar
    Vishwajeet Kumar recently posted..Google Major Ranking Factor That Affects SEOMy Profile

  14. Ryan Biddulph
    May 1, 2018 at 2:02 am #

    Being transparent helps you stand out in your niche Donna. Agreed 100%. If you have your word, you succeed. If you lose your word, by not being honest and transparent, you’re doomed. Gonzo. Best way to shine brightly is to be transparent, and the best way to be transparent is to be honest in all you do.

    Temptations arise. You see a way to cut corners. May a little white lie seems like it’ll give you a profit boost like boosting metrics to get a sponsored post, or some similar tactic. 100% of the time, lying is fear-based and holds back your success. Be honest. Be credible. Be genuine. Success finds the transparent person every time.


  15. Praveen Verma
    May 1, 2018 at 1:01 am #

    Glad to read your content. I will follow your transparency tips and always try to be transparent in the online world. Transparency is very important in our life to build genuine and strong relationship. Totally agree that we should be transparent everywhere and in everything we do.

    I like the ways you have explained the post and here we have many things to learn. Can’t wait to share this amazing post on my social media. Indeed, transparency is the key to beat our competitors.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Have a nice day,
    Praveen verma
    Praveen Verma recently posted..13 App Marketing Ideas You Haven’t Thought OfMy Profile

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