In high school, we had a family friend who was on the police force in the town where I grew up.
He was the K9 officer – so his partner was a 90 pound, sharp-fanged, lethal weapon.
Seriously…that German Shepherd was intense.
My friend told us that when he first got the dog, you couldn’t even get near it. It was ferocious. The officer (who was a rather large gentleman) was scared to even go near it.
It would bark and howl in its crate and not want to have anything to do with him.
But now, several months later, my friend would let his kids lay on top of the dog and play with it.
It was gentle and caring toward the family.
“What changed?” I asked one time.
“Well,” he said, “I just kept trying to get close. I’d give him bits of hotdogs and snacks and build trust. Over time, he just learned to trust me. Now he loves our family and would protect them at all costs.”
Looking back, I realize this is how most people are with marketing and sales.
If someone cold calls me, I won’t even give them the time of day. I’m busy.
I try not to be rude, but there’s no way they’re going to close the deal. I WON’T buy.
What do I need first?
I need trust. And I need value.
Just like the bits of hotdog eventually worked their way through the tough exterior of that German Shepherd, producing a lot of value can work your way through the heart of otherwise difficult prospects and sales leads.
If one of my team or clients suggests I look into a tool, training, software, or program, I’ll happily listen.
Why? Because I trust them.
And there are several people within the industry (many of whom I’ve never met), that have my trust.
How? They’ve earned it. They continue to put out great content and provide massive value to me.
So when they speak I listen.
In a world where you’re getting hit with thousands of messages everyday, your patience for sales and marketing has likely gone down too.
The answer? Build trust.
Do everything you can to build trust.
That’s why I write so much. That’s why I speak at events. It’s why I’m willing to share our best secrets. And it’s the reason we work so hard to serve our clients and always push the envelope.
Trust is hard to earn. But if you want to get close, it’s the only way.
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