Having been a businessman for 38 years, in several industries including retail, transportation & service, I’ve gained a lot of knowledge on marketing. If you have a business, you know well, that marketing is the main ingredient for it’s success.
The best marketing advice I can give, what has helped me succeed in every venture, is the fact that before anyone will do business with you they have to like and trust you. You have to build a friendship with your prospect. Actually, it’s not until after the friendship is developed that the real marketing ever starts.
This philosophy is even more prevalent for doing business in the online world. Although it can be difficult to develop a relationship online, it can be done. And it has to be done!
The good news is, social media has opened the door to accomplish something that was once almost impossible to do online, build relationships.
With Facebook, LinkedIn and all the other social platforms, making new friends online is actually the easiest part of the marketing equation.
We all know that with a friend you’ve had for years you could simply recommend something and they would trust your judgment without hesitation. But the new friendships you make online are not as deep…until you deepen it!
This raises the question, how can a marketer get from friendship to marketing without jeopardizing the new relationship.
There are two avenues you can take to to overcome that challenge.
The first option is by using the role of a sales person. In that case, you have to know what to say and when to say it, a skill that either you have or you don’t. Unfortunately, most people aren’t born with the gift of selling.
The other, more logical option to go from friendship to marketing, is to first give something away. A free sample, free report, free membership or trial membership, are just some of the things you could offer. There is no better way to create a likeability and trust factor than by giving someone something they perceive as being valuable.
With every business I’ve owned, I always looked at what I could give away to gain the respect of prospective customers, clients and associates. And it worked every time!
Take a look at your niche, and/or the product or service you are marketing. Ask yourself, what is it that I can give away to a prospect that they would perceive as being valuable.
When you figure out, and implement this idea, your marketing efforts will pay off greatly.