A lot of people think they have to force feed trust in order to gain credibility. But this just isn’t true – nor is it marketing or even close to brand clarity. The fact of the matter is, persuasion does not have to involve pressure or crafty measure. If you really want to enhance trust, target consumers need to know who you really are and why. If you’re looking to fool people, go ahead and click the back button.
Nonetheless, here are 6 ways to establish a first impression that lasts (watch the full video below).
1. Inquire, Observe and Take Note.
First and foremost, you have to be able to ask genuine questions and then listen. You can’t just tell people in general what their pain is and expect them to believe in what you’re selling. Even if you’re playing a quantitative game, trying to get in front of as many people as you can – you’re decreasing your odds by wasting connections. Invest time in certain interactions and you’ll be pleasantly surprised who gives you a shot. Pigeon-holing people as “out of your league” or “not good enough” is ignorant. Bias or prejudice never helps enhance trust.
2. Understand Personal Expectations.
Before you’re talking to anyone as a personal brand, you have to be willing and able to preview the experience. Those that are overly focused on selling, or trying to get somebody to like them, are missing an opportunity to establish a meaningful connection. How can anyone reassure their value this way? Seriously. Working off a sales script only buckets yourself as a selfish entrepreneur that really could care less about the pain points or needs of their customers – let alone the hidden wants and needs.
3. Walk Out Every Customer Phase.
Aside from painting expectations, you need to find a way to differentiate the process if you want to enhance trust for your personal brand. An ability to walk a potential customer down a certain set of deliverables, system or process gives them an opportunity to compare other options or their current experience. Discussing every step helps people understand what they can anticipate differently or better. Doing so even opens the door for feedback. Any good leader welcomes critique.
4. Build Your Credibility Organically.
How can you expand or educate on your knowledge? I see this all the time – people are trying to persuade target consumers, or even society in general, that they’re some sort of expert. But in reality, they’re not able to back it up and don’t know much outside of the sales pitch. I know I’m not the only one that avoids smooth-talkers. Either way, an open mind and a genuine conversation is all you really need. When people are comfortable with you as an individual, business talk happens naturally. If you really are an expert, most people will be able to tell.
5. Show Passion for Solving Problems.
If you want to impress people and enhance trust, do your best to confirm understanding and not just assume control. One of the best ways to do this is bring up past questions your customers have had and find ways to answer them differently and as honestly as you can. Some customers are going to value a different solvent, if that makes sense. You want people to be able to feel your excitement about overcoming misconceptions or initial skepticism of your business. You may live in a sketchy industry – so how are you really combatting perception?
6. Avoid Pressure–Filled Sales Tactics.
Last but not least, if you want to enhance trust, give people a chance to choose you. In other words, give them space to think about it and make their own decision. Don’t force the deal, I don’t care what society says.. Don’t oversell them for a quick buck. When the customer is allowed to buy into the process, they’re making a personal investment. When you convince them, they’re not truly bought in. In most cases, they’re still on the fence, waiting for something to go wrong. So wait for them to choose confidently. People may have to go through a bad, cheap experience before announcing their loyalty to you.