For your ideal customers to feel comfortable enough to buy from you, three things must be in place.
Your potential clients must KNOW, LIKE, and TRUST you.
Isn't that great? All you need to do is to accomplish these three things. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy, right?
((Insert record screeching noise here.))
Yes, that's great. And it's incredibly helpful information. It's a nice, short list of things to accomplish and then blammo! you should have customers banging down your front door, right?
So, why aren't those customers at your front door, you ask? And, well, uh…how do you accomplish these three seemingly simple things?
I am so glad that you asked. 🙂
Let's start with the TRUST factor.
There are a number of ways to build trust. We'll start with the easiest one.
Do What You Say You Will Do.
Be on time. My old boss would annoy me to death every time he told us, “on time is early”. It's funny how that phrase doesn't resonate with you when you are doing something that you don't love but when you are building your own business, man-oh-man is this important. Show up early to make sure that you aren't late. When you show up late – which is the same thing as saying that YOUR TIME is more important than THEIR TIME — your potential customers realize that you don't always keep your word and that you don't value them. Ouch. Not a good way to build trust.
Be predictable. There is enough uncertainty in our daily lives and your customers do NOT want you to add to that list. If you send out a weekly newsletter, guess what? SEND IT OUT WEEKLY. If you send it out one week and then not the next, you are telling your customers not to trust you. Show them that you will do what you say you will do if you want to earn their trust.
Share The Love.
Add testimonials from satisfied customers to your website. You may disagree with me on this (and I'm right, by the way), but your customers DO want to buy from you. They want to BUY but they don't want to be SOLD. Show them the love from your previous clients and you will help to put their mind at ease that you can deliver what you are promising them.
I recommend going a step further and adding a guarantee to your services. People hesitate less when they know that they can recoop some (or all) of their money if they aren't satisfied. (Your job is to make sure that they are MORE than satisfied with your services…we'll get into that later.)
Yes, I'm happy to admit that every single time that I send out my newsletter, some people unsubscribe. I am admitting this to you because it's real. And that's what happens when you are authentic. Some people LOVE you and some people don't. And that's OK. Your target peep's will hang around and that's what matters.
NEWSFLASH: Mistakes are a blessing in disguise. Your heart may sink into your chest and your Inner Critic may start going nuts telling you that you are a failure but it's actually an opportunity to build trust with your potential and current customers. Admit when something goes awry or when you mess up. It's OK and it's life.
Be real but more importantly, own up to your mistakes. We all make mistakes and your customers will appreciate you being honest, transparent, and authentic. Don't be the man hiding behind the curtain. Be the strong person standing in front of the curtain, announcing that something happened, and clearly articulate how you are going to fix it and move forward.
Give It Time.
While in pharmaceutical sales, I learned that you have to interact with a customer 7-10 times before a customer will understand and consider purchasing your product. I do not believe that the number of “touches” required for a sale is that high for the general public, but let's assume it is.
How do you “touch” your customer that many times?
The first step is to be patient. Trust is built over time. Your target customer may not be ready to buy right now… and that's OK. Maybe they won't be ready next month or next year. Take the time to build a real relationship and treat the person like….A PERSON. Keep the dialogue going and keep the faith. It WILL HAPPEN.
The second step is to consistently utilize social media, regularly send out quality content to your newsletter peep's, call them, email them, and follow up with them to see what questions they have and how you can support their business. Share your expertise in networking meetings, online groups that you belong to, make videos to post on your blog. Speak up, be accessible, be visible and be patient.
Put it into action:
Write down 3 ways that you can build trust with your current and potential clients THIS WEEK. Please share them in the comment section below and DO THEM. Your business success depends on it!