Building trust with transparency: Sharing your knowledge

Knowledge sharing is an important way to demonstrate your expertise in a given area. It's why content marketing can help companies create a great SEO presence and it's part of how a customer finds a solution. It's also how people understand what you do, respect how you do it, and trust your guidance.

Building trust is an important part of the buying process. A salesperson's main goal is to build rapport, getting someone to understand and trust what they are saying. Building rapport is done through creating connections and delivering true information.

Without transparency, you risk customers going elsewhere

Transparency is desperately needed, especially in advertising and marketing. With the lack of communication around media buying for companies - what it's getting them and how it's doing - is part of why companies are turning to consulting agencies.

According to Digiday: Management consultancies are turning the trust problem between advertisers and their media agencies into an opportunity to muscle in on the number of budgets increasingly prioritizing planning over buying.

Companies are turning to another source of transparency because their current partners aren't offering it. Companies are rethinking their budgets, spending allocations, and placement of media.

How to be more transparent

You can share your knowledge through blogging, videos, social media, and more. You choose which media to share on based on where your audience resides, you want to reach them where they're at. Do your research about who is on each one and when they are engaging before committing to a platform.

Share the "why", not just the "how." Part of learning and decision making is understanding the underlying factors behind making a decision. You can tell people the "how" - how to gain followers, create a community, increase their SEO - but starting with the why will leave them:

  • More energized about the types of changes they can make
  • More confident that all of these tactics they're employing will help them meet their goals
  • Able to use tactics in other ways since it's not simply memorizing a set of tactics

But, what if someone copies me or steals my information?

Individuals or businesses sharing information tend to get worried that someone will take their secret sauce and they'll be left without any recompense. Opening yourself up to someone hearing and disseminating your information is the cost of doing business. However, sharing information doesn't mean you're:

  • Giving away all of the family's secret recipes - Proprietary and "secret" information can stay that way. You're sharing information that will entice and enlighten your target demographic and then solve their problems.
  • Oversharing - You're not sharing everything that happens to your and your business. You're curating relevant information that you think would resonate with your target customers.
  • Giving the surface stuff away - You're not repeating information seen everywhere else on the web. You're offering should be unique and valuable to keep customers coming back or willing to give you information like their email or contact information.

The benefits far outweigh the cons when it comes to being transparent with your customers online and in person. By doing this, you build trust and rapport. Building these two things allow you:

  • To resell to previous customers
  • To upsell current customers
  • Build a base of fans and advocates who will tell future customers how awesome you are
  • Develop a following that is interested in what you have to say
  • Create a bank of interested potential customers

By building these opportunities up, you open your business up to other kinds of revenue (like sponsorships and affiliate marketing) and make your customers trust, respect, and value your information.