A Blueprint to Boost Confidence in your Business

By Jim Augustus Armstrong

In the first instalment in this three-part series, I covered the fact that many institutions suffer from a massive loss of trust. It is against this backdrop of distrust that all your marketing efforts take place. I also discussed ways to overcome this distrust and position yourself as a trusted advisor. Let’s look at additional strategies to accomplish this in Part 2.

Assume Prospects Distrust You
This isn’t true of course; at least some prospects trust you, especially if you have a good reputation. However, for sales and marketing purposes, it’s an excellent starting point.

When designing your marketing and sales processes, imagine the most skeptical, stand-offish prospect who needs new floors but is convinced flooring companies are going to rip them off.

What would you need to say and do to win this prospect’s trust?

Once you’ve figured this out, gaining the trust of less skeptical prospects is easily achieved.

Video Endorsements
In Part 1, I covered the importance of testimonials, online reviews and video marketing. (These are all strategies to win the trust of skeptical prospects, as described.) Another powerful way to use video is for client testimonials. Your sales team should ask happy clients for a testimonial video, and shoot it right then and there on their smartphone. Just two or three sentences saying what they like about your service and their new floors is perfect.

Will everyone agree to do a video?

No. But a percentage will and these videos can be used on your company’s YouTube channel, website and in social media marketing.

Tap into Past Clients
Of all the people in your market, who are the ones that trust you more than anyone else?

Your past clients. Yet the vast majority of floor dealers make no effort to communicate regularly with these people.

If you want to win the trust game, you need to regularly connect with your client list via a newsletter using the 90/10 formula. This means 90 per cent of the content is fun, informative, entertaining and relationship building, and 10 per cent is about your business. You’ll give yourself a massive advantage over competitors by adopting and routinely following this strategy because you’ll probably be the only one in your market doing so.

Leverage Borrowed Trust
Betty needs flooring. Wilma, her co-worker, recently bought flooring from you and had a great experience. So, she refers Betty. Betty is much easier to sell to than a cold prospect who enters your store based off a Google search or an ad they saw. This is called borrowed trust.

Put systems in place to increase the number of client referrals you get. One of many strategies is to communicate with past clients using the 90/10 formula previously described.

Align with Businesses
Another overlooked referral source are realtors, designers, remodellers, insurance companies, cleaners and other businesses that can provide ongoing referrals. This is simply another way to leverage borrowed trust.

Ride Celebrity Coattails
Every town, no matter how small, has people who are well-known — local politicians (mayor, city councillors), professional athletes (especially minor league players), owners of high-profile businesses (auto dealers, real estate brokers), pastors, and leaders of civic groups and charitable organizations. If one of these people buys floors, make it your mission to obtain a testimonial and photo of you standing with them. Also, don’t wait passively for them to become clients; actively try to create connections with these people. For example, offer to install new flooring in a church’s recreational room or daycare for free. After the job is complete, ask for a testimonial and photo. Same goes for other charitable organizations.

Jim Augustus Armstrong is founder and president of FlooringSuccessSystems.com, a company that provides floor dealers with marketing services and coaching to help them attract quality customers, close more sales, get higher margins and work the hours they choose. To obtain a free copy of Jim’s groundbreaking flooring industry report, Stop Leaving Millions on The Table, visit FloorMillions.com. Jim can be reached at 530-790-6720 or [email protected].

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