Trust once lost is hard to earn back. Not too hard to understand why. Ever heard of the boy who cried wolf? That story is actually a little bit too generous when you think about how society reacts today. Having been lied to once, we rarely provide another chance. Fool me once shame on you, but fool me twice shame on me.
Trust isn't just for personal relationships; it's vital for business relationships aswell. In fact, maybe that is the point. Business is always personal. Usually the people who say it isn't are usually corporate villains in movies and tv shows. Messing with people's business life affects everything in their personal lives.
However, let's not look at just the negatives of trust. Trust that is earned can be a great asset for business, sales, and marketing. In fact, a buyer's process exists in all of our psychologies. Let's map out what this process of building trust looks like in business:
1. Realizing the problem:
For instance, realizing you roof is leaking. Knowing where and what they are searching can give you a leg up on your competition. Tools exist outside of Google that can help with this.
2. Searching for a solution:
Sometimes, the answer isn't always obvious. In fact, this is more often the case than not. Demonstrating that you are an authority begins to build trust. Producing valuable and entertaining content works well when executing this step.
3. Looking for options:
Usually, a potential client doesn't look at just one company before making a decision. Keeping them aware of your company while they search should be your number one priority. Show up where your competition shows up, and they'll pick up on the pattern.
4. Making the decision:
This is usually the step people fail the most. Either they don't build trust using the first two steps or they completely botch the sale altogether.
5. Post-experience evaluation:
Did your client trust you? Ask them to share it with the world. Reviews will give you the social proof to build trust. This also gives you the feedback you need to evaluate how well you're executing steps 1-4.
Trust is not an easy thing to come by and it shouldn't be. However, earning that trust isn't difficult with intentional marketing techniques and some scruples. The next time you think you need to "sell" someone, stop it, drop it, and build trust instead.