Social media is a wonderful tool when you choose to use it strategically and in a way that builds trust. But with more activity online, it can be harder for people to trust you as the authority on what you do. Add the fact that consumers are becoming a lot more savvy and fast in their decision making and their BS detectors on overdrive. It can feel like a battle you’re never going to win.
Research shows that first impressions are made in person in seven seconds. However, online, I believe that a millisecond is more accurate. You have a tiny window of opportunity to capture their attention and start creating trust. Use this to your advantage so you can be seen as their trusted advisor as quickly as possible.
Here’s how to do it.
Step 1 – Know you
Imagine you’re in a bar wanting to meet someone new. When you meet someone new, and they introduce themselves to you, it’s unlikely that you’re going to ask them to marry you then and there. Instead, you need to get to know them first. You’d ask them some questions and they’d ask you some questions. You engage in conversation and you start to get to know them. You need to create a similar experience with your audience online.
Share what you’re passionate about both with your business and outside of your business. Both are important.
Step 2 – Like you
We all like many different things. But humans are drawn to other humans who share a similar set of values, likes and interests. This is what you’re aiming for on social media.
Share things that align with your values, your company values and what you know will align with the values of your audience.
Step 3 – Trust you
Trust builds over time and incrementally. With every positive thing that happens between two people, trust is built. When trust is built with someone, they are going to be a lot more receptive to what that you say and share.
Online, the way that you do that is by offering solutions, hints, tips and suggestions to people. Help them achieve their goals and or solve their problems before they even spend a cent with you.
Step 4 – Trusted advisor
By following the above steps, you are adding value online. You become the trusted advisor for your audience, it means that their decision to buy from you will happen a lot faster. You become their “go-to” person. They will seek you out because they know you can and will deliver on what you promise. To become the trusted advisor for your audience online is also known as you being seen as the expert in their eyes.
Step 5 – What now? Take action
You must post on social media daily. Share images of “behind the scenes” no matter what size your business is. It can be showcasing your team, yourself and even the lifestyle that you have. Share posts of results that other people have achieved when using your service or product. This adds another layer of trust.
Remember people are voyeurs online. They are unlikely to comment and or visibly engage with you online until they feel like they trust you. Follow the steps above, knowing that your audience is watching your every move, and build your online presence wisely.
Nicola Moras, social media and visibility expert and author of “Visible”, a guide for business owners on how to generate financial results from social media and digital marketing