We all are guilty of having some trust issues in our lives. Whether it’s with loved ones, a significant other, coworkers, our boss, the government or corporations, we’re all a little distrustful of someone or something. But the real issue at hand isn’t so much trust; it’s vulnerability. We have a problem trusting sometimes because it makes us vulnerable, and when we’re vulnerable, we can be harmed.
That might all sound a little heavy for a marketing blog, but I’m just trying to help you understand what you need to accomplish as an inbound marketer. You need your leads to trust you, and in order to trust you, they have to believe you’re not going to hurt them or take advantage of them.
But how can I hurt somebody I don’t even know?
You’re not going to cause them any physical or emotional harm, that’s not the kind of hurt we’re talking about. Instead, they’re worried you’re going to waste their time, or make them a promise you can’t keep. Or that you’re being disingenuous about your products/services, and you’re going to cause them to waste their money.
That makes sense. So how do I put them at ease?
Well, for starters, by offering a quality product/service. No amount of marketing or salesmanship is going to make up for an inferior product/service.
No kidding. But I believe in what I’m selling, so what’s next?
For inbound marketers, the first step is establishing credibility. The lead doesn’t know that you’re a worthwhile business, so you have to prove that to them.
Strong, informative content. The content is what’s going to draw the visitor to your site in the first place, and a blog article will be your first (and perhaps only) chance to show them you know what you’re talking about. Every blog article should be well-written, strongly researched and worth reading.
Got it. Then what?
Now it’s time for the content offers. If the visitor likes your blog, they’ll want more information. You should have a link to a related content offer at the end of every blog article, and it also needs to be of high quality. A strong content offer will solidify your value and credibility in the lead’s mind.
And that’s going to make them trust me?
Not quite. They now see that you know what you’re talking about, but they don’t necessarily trust you yet.
Dang it. So how do I make them trust me?
By continuing to provide value, even as you try to make a sale. When your sales team reaches out to the lead (which they must do after the lead downloads the content offer), continue to provide value to them. If you’re using emails, provide links to other blog articles or attach another eBook – keep demonstrating that you’re trying to help the lead. If you’re using a sales call, offer to send them some additional content after the call. They will probably take you up on the offer, which gives you yet another opportunity to market to them.
The lead understands that you’re trying to get them to buy your product/service, but will appreciate that you’re not being pushy about it. Instead, you’re trying to make a sale while still giving them information for free. And that’s when they’ll start to trust you.
Finally! And then I’m done?
Well, you’re done earning their trust. But now you’ve got to keep trying to close that sale.
Figures. Any tips for that?
Funny you should ask. We actually have a great eBook on that topic entitled “How to Turn your Inbound Leads into Sales” which you can download below: