How Does One Go About Selling Trust?


The biggest key and the most difficult task for companies and their salespeople involves fundamentally changing the way they view sales. Traditionally, sales have been made by solicitation initiated by the sales professional. This hunting or seeking out or prospecting, as it has been called for decades, needs to be replaced with philosophy and process that attracts clients as opposed to seeking clients. This is not merely a play on words. It is a fundamental shift on the part of the sales professional. And the more one targets affluent clients the more important this becomes.

Frankly, hunting is antithetical to creating trust. If you want to establish trust you must get clients to seek you out. Becoming the sought-after provider of choice involves instituting a sophisticated and comprehensive marketing strategy that involves many different activities and behaviors. It takes time and it takes effort and it takes money – not a lot of money but it does take some money.

Of course, I realize most reading this will instantly reject this philosophy because they need to hunt today in order to eat. I understand this and agree that if you don’t have clients seeking you out today then you need to become a hunter and seek them out. Hunting does work. I have done it successfully in the past when I had to acquire a new client immediately and you can too. And you can take comfort in the fact that if you hunt, the landscape will be void of most competitors who are too lazy to hunt.

If you must hunt, by all means, hunt and hunt aggressively and expansively. But AT THE SAME TIME, work at not needing to hunt as much, by developing a longer-term strategy that will get clients coming to you so that one day you will not be dependent upon the grunt work of having to solicit and seek new clients.

If you fail to do this you will forever be on the treadmill looking for the next deal. This is exhausting, not much fun, and will eventually lead to burnout. All highly successful salespeople have figured this out and have developed multiple strategies that position them as authority experts with certain local celebrity status in their marketplace. Some of these strategies include speaking, writing, and publishing, developing local media relationships, becoming involved and taking leadership positions in business and civic organizations, hosting radio or television programs, conducting educational workshops.

The better you get at this, the less hunting you will have to do.

Doug Bryan

Great article. I’m VERY interested in learning more about trust-based selling. I look forward to more articles and coaching calls on the subject.

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