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How to Inspire Trust in Potential Clients

Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships. – Stephen Covey

Amen, Stephen, amen. That quote pretty much sums up my approach to all of my clients. I have to trust you, and you have to trust me.

I have to trust that you will give me the information I request to do my job properly. I have to trust that you will pay me on time and in full. I have to trust that you’re not a back-stabbing asshole.

You have to trust that I am an excellent writer. You have to trust that my experience will serve you well. You have to trust that I will deliver what I promised and when I promised it.

Without trust, every single relationship is doomed from the get-go – but that’s another topic entirely! Today, let’s talk about how to inspire trust in your potential clients, because it’ll make your entire life a zillion times easier, especially if you are just launching your business.

Cultivate great word-of-mouth

I’d say about 90% of my leads come from word-of-mouth generated by past and current clients. As a result, these leads are already highly-qualified, because these people are being told to trust me – by someone they already trust. That might not sound like much, but it is truly powerful.

Think of it this way: Would you trust a Facebook ad in your news feed over a recommendation from your best friend?

Have a seriously great website

I cannot emphasize this enough. Whether your leads are coming from word-of-mouth or organic search, the first thing that people are going to do is look up your website. You better knock ‘em off their seats.

If your website does not accurately reflect the value you bring to the table, you just lost that potential client’s trust. (If you’re not sure whether your website is awesome or not, shoot me a note if you want an honest assessment.)

Showcase your best work

As a service provider, you have a little extra work cut out for you to establish trust, because you don’t have a “thing” that a potential client can hold in their hands and try out before they decide to buy.

This is where your portfolio of work comes into play. Showcase it on your website. If you deliver something even less tangible – like a business coach, attorney, or accountant – showcase testimonials and client stories.

Dazzle them with exemplary customer service from day one

Be responsive to their emails and questions. Let them know how happy you are to hear from them.

Be friendly – you never know when you might be talking to the person who’s going to turn into your most lucrative and fun-to-work-with client ever.

And be helpful. Offer ideas and solutions without giving away the farm. Just demonstrate that you have their best interests in mind.

Manage expectations

My coach, Mike, just taught me this super simple approach, and it is a godsend. From day one, manage your client’s expectations. What can they expect from you in terms of communication? Turnaround times? Costs? Project updates?

Your client will see that you take their project seriously, and as you deliver on it, the trust will continue to grow. That’s priceless.

Will everyone instantly trust you? Of course not, but some people are just assholes. Do what you can to build trust, and the loyalty – and word-of-mouth – will follow.

To be trusted is a greater compliment than being loved. – George MacDonald

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