Trust is kinda like the Stanley Cup; insanely hard to get, and very easy to lose.
You're sure to get some bumps, bruises and take some hits along the way, but the best still find a way to win it.
However, many companies are actually their own worst enemy when it comes to generating brand trust. They simply can't get out of their own way.
Because they're guilty of expecting the ends without first considering the means.
It's not about getting people to trust you. It's about giving them a reason to.
Trust should be built into the core values of each product, service, and customer relationship you create, not simply slapped on later on in the process.
Building Brand Trust
1. It's Not About You
It's so easy to do, and yet so damaging to your efforts for building brand trust.
Who are you trying to help? You? Or your prospect?
The answer is (hopefully) as obvious as the question, so there you have it. That's who you should be talking about.
Your prospects don't perform search engine queries with "I'm looking to hear a brand who loves to talk about themselves" in mind.
They're thinking, "I'm looking for a brand that understands my pain points and tells me how they can help."
Skip the part where you tell them how great your product/service is and just get to the part where you tell them how they'll benefit.
The same goes for any blog posts or premium content you produce. Trust that they came to you for a reason. Waxing poetic about your brand will only drive people away.
Don't go all Kanye West on your audience.
2. Eliminate Hyperbole
Of all five, this one may be the most common among brands.
To see what I mean, simply scroll through your Twitter feed and study the wording many brands and industry experts use to compose their tweets.
"The Secrets for Achieving X,Y,Z...."
"10 Simple Ways for Generating...."
"The 1 Thing you Could Be Doing Right Now that Will...."
Here's the thing about secrets; people don't share them. Hence, the secret.
And anything worth doing isn't simple. Success takes hard work.
Finally, if the success of my efforts is truly relient on one thing, well, I've got bigger problems to worry about. Like my own incompetence for not figuring it out sooner.
3. Make Good on your Promises
Landing pages and calls-to-action are prime suspects for unfulfilled promises.
In an effort to promote and convey the value of certain offers or products – and generate leads – sometimes companies have a tendency to over-promise.
This is no benign mistake, as the submission of contact information should be treated delicately. It's a sacred act. Visitors are wary of giving away such information unless they feel great value can be had.
If you over-promise, not only have you just infuriated a potential prospect who feels they've been spammed, you've also blown any chance of a relationship.
Again, ensure what you're promoting has value at its core. If you can do this, you'll never have to worry about over-promising.
4. Engage the Conversation
Not to be mistaken with starting the conversation, engaging in the conversation means establishing a mutual relationship of communication.
Don't be that guy that wants to tell you all about his day, yet has no interest in hearing about yours.
That guy sucks.
Rather than simply posting relevant content to your corresponding social media accounts and forgetting about it, check back and engage.
Ask questions. Reply to comments. Post updates that aren't promoting anything, and instead are focused on establishing an open line of communication and developing relationships.
Respond to blog comments. Monitor the company email.
The conversations are taking place everywhere. Make sure you're a part of them.
5. Follow Through
Every time you acquire a new customer, you've also acquired a great deal of trust.
Don't blow it by viewing this as an end to your relationship development efforts. Now, more than ever, it's important to validate that trust that your new customer has in you.
After all, acquiring a new customer should never be the sole focus. It should be about helping your customers.
Keep communication open. Be transparent. Be available.
When problems arise, work through it together and find a solution.
Just because you've won their trust doesn't mean you can't lose it.