Do you trust me? The amount of trust a prospect has will determine if they buy and until you build that trust, you won’t get anything. Making something free does not build trust. In fact, it doesn’t matter as much as you might think. Focusing on the price as the only gap will leave out a majority of the reasons prospects won’t buy. I don’t think you will want a free consultation and I’m definitely not getting that kiss.
I just read the chapter “Trust Gap” in the book Unmarketing by Scott Stratten and Alison Kramer. It’s short, maybe 4 pages, and something everyone should read. It highlighted several points I made in Cold Calling Your Way To Losing Weight. A simple cold call will not build any trust. That cold call sets off a string of events that makes both parties feel uncomfortable. Have you ever cold called for a date? I’m guessing that the data on those calls would reveal what we all already know. No Date. No future relationship. What investment did it appear you were making?
I Googled “trust gap”. Apparently it’s a real thing. It exists within government agencies and the general public, businesses and stake holders, employers and employees. The list goes on and on. It’s everywhere. Have you ever thought about that gap with your prospects? Does the message you share to the public build trust? What are you doing to close that gap?
The first area listed in the chapter that has a huge trust gap is accounting. Ugh! I been a witness to that specific market since joining Kahuna Accounting 6 months ago. Trying to get someone to give you access to their bank account naturally creates a bit of an uneasy feeling. You really have to have trust with someone to do that. We have made a business about building trust.
We have clients all over the country that take advantage of our virtual bookkeeping services and we rarely meet them in person when initially signing them up. I think we have some trust there. Our marketing and sales process has been created to focus on the relationship and that has made all the difference for us. We want to reduce that gap.
Prospects want to know about you. By reading great content and getting tips from you on your blog, social media, and other outlets, they begin to discover more and more about you, your business and then the gap decreases. Attending events and networking with others in your industry will give them more insight about you and your business.
“Your goal always needs to be engagement; business will result.” Scott Stratten and Alison Kramer ( I don’t know which one to give credit to for that quote from the book. If either of you two wants to take individual credit, I will edit.)
One strategy we created was a simple checklist, 8 Year End Accounting Tips, to help our prospects get ready for their year end bookkeeping. We did not offer a free consultation. Our goal was to get something into the world that would benefit those in need. We wanted to help. It naturally built trust with our audience and was a unique way for them to get a little taste of the services we provide. It built the relationship and decreased the trust gap.
One thing you have to wrap your head around is that by sharing your self to the world makes you vulnerable. You have to be willing to build the relationship and all relationships come at some cost. It’s not necessarily bad, so don’t let your mind go down that path. You have to be willing to share. Relationships take time and energy. The investment you make for your audience will pay dividends in ways you haven’t even thought of yet. Just be willing to invest. It’s a lot more than just a phone call.
Investing in your audience means being thoughtful, respectful, and receptive to those you come into contact with. You have to find where they hang out and speak their language. You must take interest in their world. Remember, it’s not only about you. Reading their posts, commenting on what gets their attention and sharing valuable information that will assist them with their needs will make you appear like you are real person. A person that cares.
Create your outbound marketing around the concept of building a relationship. It will cost you. It will take time. It may make you feel uncomfortable. Put yourself out there and please, please, please… be yourself. Engage with world on the many platforms that are available.
I’m hoping Scott Stratten will work with me on the “Free Make-Out Offer”. I will definitely share that with you, but until that happens go invest, share, and build the relationships you need to decrease that trust gap.