Just Entrepreneurs - Building Trust with customers

Team building is something we’ve probably all been subjected too at some point in our lives. Remember that exercise where you’d count to three and then fall backwards into your partner’s arms? My older brother introduced me to this ‘game’ when I was about 8 years old. I was assured that I’d be caught when I fell back. I wasn’t and I remember hitting a hard floor littered with pieces of Lego. It was agony.

Trust is the basis from which to build a solid relationship. Luckily for my brother I’m a forgiving person, but a customer isn’t going to be. If you don’t let customers see that you’re trustworthy then they’re not going to fall back on the count of three and buy from you. If you don’t build trust, you’ll lose sales and leads. Simple really.

Let’s look a little bit more at why should you be so concerned about building trust?

Building trust is a form of sales. You’re trying to convince someone that you can provide all the answers to their questions and that you can take their fear away.

If you can remove this element of caution from this potential customer, then they’re going to be convinced that your product is the one for them. What do you do when you’re convinced that a service or product is awesome? You tell others who are looking for that same thing. What this means is that in the long run you’ll have to do less ‘selling’ of your services, as customers will do the talking for you.

But that’s why trust is important, now to look at how you can instill it.

1) Offering people free and informative content is one way.

Informative content is key. Providing information that answers people’s questions stops them from looking at your competition. If people have found you on their own accord, then the chances are that they’re not going to stick around to ask a question when they can so easily move on and to one of your competitors.

Keeping your website ticking over with recent news and blog posts can also be a good way of instilling trust. Showing that you’re active reassures people you’re going to be able to meet their needs efficiently. Put simply, when you visit a website and see it hasn’t been updated since 2013, you begin to question the reliability of that brand.

Being topical is important since a relevant article can make people want to buy your product/use your services. Showing a level of expertise and explaining details is also required here. For example, I wouldn’t be inclined to buy a new pair of shoes off a website that was discussing weight loss tips.

The importance of quality

Content is great, but there’s also the risk of going overboard with it. While quantity is necessary, quality is more important. Gone are the days of boasting to classmates about how many pages you wrote in the exam; if your customer reaches the end of a block of text and feels as though nothing insightful has been gained, then they’ll probably be unwilling to commit time to what you have to say in the future.

Creativity goes a long way. Imagine if everything you read was just black and white facts? Sure, you’d be well informed but you wouldn’t be moved to make a decision on what brand you’d like to choose from. Creativity isn’t just reserved for art college kids, something as simple as speaking directly to a person’s problem is an effective strategy. You could say ‘I’m going to make you the envy of everyone’, as opposed to ‘I sell cars.’ Inform people from the offset what you’re going to do for them and they’ll look no further.

2) Having a solid identity

Branding is about building a solid identity, something that customers can grab onto and associate all your good work with. Having a clear brand also makes it easier for people to share you with other potential customers.

You can also build your identity through social media; a point that everyone seems so determined to constantly remind us of! Social media marketing can be used to answer questions and engage more generally with your audience. It’s always nice to be heard, but it’s even better to have someone carefully listening and replying to your queries. It’s like when celebrities reply to average-Joe tweets; everyone immediately has more time for that celebrity. Since he got a reply from Ainsley Harriot, my friend never shuts up about how awesome the tv chef is.

3) Make it easy for people to follow you

By creating RSS feeds, people can get the most instant information about what changes your business is offering. If it’s easier for people to follow what you do, then you can instill that necessary trust to them through your compelling content.

If a customer ends up on your page after searching for information that they trust, then you know that you have the basis for a good relationship. By doing landing page optimization, your making sure that your message is read and properly understood. If they don’t understand you, how are they meant to trust you?

Essentially, it’s always about understanding your customers what makes them comfortable. Asking what it is that they don’t trust, is something that oddly enough, will provide the basis from which to build trust upon.

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