Building trust within your business is a true form of currency. Regardless of the industry you work in, adopting trust-building techniques for the purpose of offering genuine solutions is essential for securing your reputation–and clients.
For Tyler McBroom, a Florida-based CPA, helping business owners maximize their profits, while keeping as much of their hard-earned dollars as possible is a priority. McBroom is the CEO and partner at MMC CPAs, who help navigate clients in the six-to-eight figure range through the tumultuous waters of today’s tax landscape.
When it comes to money, bringing on any person or firm to help you requires a great deal of trust. McBroom has three methods that business owners, regardless of their industry, should be taking to turn potential clients into trusted, paying clients.
Provide Solutions Instead Of Selling Products
“Once a prospective client feels like you are in it for your own financial gain at the expense of providing a service to them, trust is shattered and they are leaving you for your competition. For this reason it’s important to focus on your business’ initial consultation process, tailoring it to each individual client, rather than presenting them with blanket service offerings,” suggests McBroom. “In walking clients through a uniquely tailored series of questions, you will be able to offer and/or provide customized solutions that perhaps you couldn’t have known but for having those types of conversations.”
Whether you’re in the business of preparing tax returns or social media management, a question that often comes up is whether an initial consultation is “free’.’ Believe it or not, there is little to no value in charging for an initial consultation, because you are already starting off on a “money-first” mindset, rather than one of comfort, trust, and security.
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When you can show someone that you have just (potentially) saved them thousands of dollars, it quickly builds trust for them, before a single dollar is exchanged. For this reason, it’s important to tell clients when they don’t need something, especially if the product or service they are inquiring about would result in an unnecessary expense and step for both parties involved.
You’re Only As Good As Your Word
Have you ever had a call with a (prospective) client, where within the first fifteen minutes of the phone call you are telling them how you can save them “x” amount of thousands of dollars of money?
Remember, those promises are big, which is why promises are predicated upon trust. “In order to convey and confirm that trust you are asking clients to place in you, make sure you have developed systems or mechanisms to actually walk them through what that would look like, if they were to move forward with you,” explains McBroom. “Mind you, this does not mean you need to show them your proprietary systems and secret sauce, but that trust was first built upon that free consultation, where you are now solidifying those promises you initially presented to the client.”
Leverage Social Media Appropriately
Knowledge is power and when it comes to educating your community, don’t charge for it. Social media is a massive trust-building tool that ironically, lacks veracity, accuracy, and an unbiased conveyance of information.
“Very few CPAs share advice and tax education daily, for free, which makes it difficult for many tax firms to really get their name out there. Taxes are already complicated and a major headache for both the taxpayer and the firms filing on their behalf–so make sure it is as smooth a process as possible. Educating your clients in an easy-to-understand format on social media can help build a solid community of businesses and consumers that follow your firm solely on credibility–even though they may not be working with you yet,” says McBroom.
Start to leverage platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook where you are able to humanize your firm and knowledge to build trust and gain credibility.