In the old way of selling, it was all about beating the pavement. Cold calling, showing up unannounced, or spamming inboxes. A numbers game. If you saw 100 clients in a day, surely at least one was destined to buy. Tomorrow, you do it all over again.
It’s not breaking news that those methods don’t work anymore. I setup Google Voice nine years ago so I could screen my calls and avoid these calls – if you found a way to get pass that, don’t expect a high-five.
At Creadio, we position ourselves as a resource in your toolbox to help you attract your ideal customers. When I say you can “attract customers” to people who are still bought into the old system of selling, they’re skeptical. I get it. But the following is what they don’t get about this new age, and why the old tactics don’t work at scale.
We used to give the benefit of the doubt. Today, credibility is earned.
We have all the information of the world at our disposal and a million messages trying to catch our eyeballs every time we log on, tune in, or drive down a street. We’ve been burned by misinformation that historically had been filtered out by editors who held a high degree of integrity, but those days are long gone. We got bamboozled by shady dealers who forged their online reviews – your word used to be your bond. We’re suspicious, and rightfully so.
In light of this, we’re thirsty for sources we can trust to give us helpful information that we can act on – safe places and trusted relationships where we’re confident we won’t be led astray. Becoming a trusted resource is a prerequisite for success on this new terrain.
So, how do you do it?
There are many ways to build your credibility and recognition, but you must first realize that it’s an investment. This is about branding and providing value before any transaction between you and your prospect is even part of the conversation. Give, give, then give more before you ask anything in return. TV Chefs get this right. Martha Stewart, Rachel Ray and more know that they can show you all the steps, but you’re still going to buy their products. In fact, the fact that they showed the steps built trust, and because the trust was built without obligation, their audiences will search high and low for their products.
If you want to build credibility, share helpful information that you either created or aggregated. It’s great if you maintain a blog or YouTube channel, and I encourage it if you can do it, but don’t let it stop you if your voice sounds like cat nails on a chalkboard when it’s recorded – or if you don’t have the writing talents to produce blog posts people actually want to read. You could instead become the clearinghouse for great industry-specific information – a resource that pulls helpful content from a variety of sources and shares it in a digest like a custom website, Facebook page, or to an email list.
By creating great content on your YouTube channel or your blog, you stir desire. You show people that you know what you’re talking about, and it didn’t cost them a dime to get that information. We’re looking to grow and be better, so if you’re showing us how to do it while finding creative ways to hold our attention, you become the trusted guide.
Teach your audience.
When you provide value that doesn’t obligate me to anything, I’ll follow you on Linkedin, YouTube, or wherever else you might be. I might even share your stuff with colleagues. I’ll retweet you, post it to my timeline, and boom – you’re in demand. I’m looking for the edge, and you’ve proved that you’ve got the goods to help me get it with your readily available free resources.
When you do this well, your prospects will hunt you down and get excited to do business with someone so knowledgeable and insightful. Your relationship becomes about a value exchange, and you get less pushback on your price as you’re not playing that game anymore.
I said earlier that this is an investment. People still bought into the old school way of doing things may argue that they don’t see a direct return on doing all this free work of creating and aggregating content. I challenge you to take a look at the world as it is however, and not how it was. Prospects today have come to expect that when they open their phones or tablets, or direct Alexa to give them their morning briefing that they’ll get served valuable content and information. The way they will add you to the “safe list” then, is for you to also be of great service to meeting their needs.
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