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What is the Know/Like/Trust Factor and Why Does it Matter?
The Know/Like/Trust factor or principle is a marketing concept based on the belief that people do business with those whom they know, like and trust. If you find marketing your business difficult or overwhelming, this principle can help focus your efforts. By infusing ‘know’, ‘like’ and ‘trust’ into your content, you’ll be laying the groundwork for growth and success.
Why Does it Matter?
‘All things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like, and trust.’ – ‘The Go-Giver’ by Bob Burg and John David Mann
Whether you realise it or not, the Know/Like/Trust Factor is the foundation of almost every business relationship. Without it, you’re unlikely to win clients or make sales. Potential clients need to know you exist and what you’re all about. Then they need to determine whether they like what they discover. Do you seem like someone they can connect with? Are you qualified and capable of meeting their needs? Finally, once they know and like you, they need to trust you. Only then can you expect to secure them as a client.
How Do You Build the Know/Like/Trust Factor?
Depending on how someone finds you and what their circumstances are, the journey from knowing you to trusting you may be a quick one. However, more often than not, you need to actively move this process along. Here are some ideas to get you started…
Potential clients need to know who you are and what you stand for. They need to know what services you offer and why you’re qualified to deliver them. It goes deeper than simply recognising your logo or being able to pick you out in a crowd – it’s about understanding your brand’s core values.
An engaging about page on your website and good quality, professional headshots are a good place to start. Be clear about the services you provide, the potential benefits, how you work with clients and what you charge. You also need to communicate exactly who you serve and who you don’t. You want to attract your ideal clients and repel those who aren’t a good fit.
Beyond these things, the best way to help people get to know you and improve your credibility is by sharing your knowledge through useful, valuable content. You can do this through blogging, social media, a mailing list, podcast or video – it’s totally up to you.
Knowing you isn’t the same as liking you. How you present yourself and your brand makes a huge difference. People connect with genuine people, so authenticity goes a long way. Content that gives your audience a peek behind-the-scenes is a great way to embrace this idea.
Sharing inspiring, relatable stories is another way to enhance your likeability. For example, your audience may be interested in your business or career story so far. You could also talk about challenges you’ve faced and how you overcame them.
While it’s important to be upbeat and positive, people value honesty and transparency, so don’t shy away from sharing difficult days or tricky situations. Potential clients want to know they’ll be working with someone who can be real with them.
One of the simplest ways to build trust through your marketing is to keep showing up. Consistency breeds trust, so keep sharing valuable information, unique insights and advice. Keep answering questions and addressing concerns. Demonstrating your knowledge over and over again can have quite an impact.
Leveraging ‘social proof’ is another way to instil trust. Social proof is a term originally coined in 1984 by author Robert Cialdini in his book Influence. Essentially, it’s the idea that people copy the actions of others in an attempt to emulate behaviour in certain situations. In marketing, social proof takes a similar form. When people shop, they look for reviews, recommendations and evidence that others have used a product before making their decision.
Using social proof in your marketing can be as simple as sharing case studies, reviews and testimonials. If you work with big brands or industry leaders, sharing that information publicly is another great way to build trust. To a potential client, if you’ve worked with *insert well known brand*, you must be worth their consideration!
If You Do One Thing This Week…
Using what you’ve learned about the Know/Like/Trust Factor so far, spend some time brainstorming marketing ideas. Is there anything you can do within your business to cultivate more of these things?
Perhaps you could start sending a regular email to your mailing list? Or you could try sharing tips and advice via blog posts like this? Maybe it’s as simple as posting some testimonials on Instagram? Once you’ve come up with a few ideas, create some simple goals to keep you on track. You can learn more about how I approach goal setting here.
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