Anybody Wanna Buy From Ol' Shifty Eyes?
What makes you trust one person yet not another? I mean "really". Here's how a Newbie sees it - and if you hope to make a fair degree of sales these days, you had better understand what it takes to make a newbie trust you!
What makes one person's "word" believable? Remember that saying, "A person's only as good as his word?" My Dad always said that when I was growing up, and my husband says it to our two sons. I grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwestern United States. Often in the evening when my Dad and brothers were done with the "after-supper" chores, salesmen would often come. My Dad invariably knew them by their first name. They were selling everything from soybean and corn seed to grain bins to hail insurance and more. You can imagine.
I was little then, and I remember them sitting at the kitchen table. It was summertime, so I could stay up later. June bugs were bouncing off the outside of the screens, and sometimes there was distant heat lightning on the horizon. I liked listening to them talk on those evenings - sort of reassuring in a sense. I could feel they trusted each other. The words flowed freely - there was no pretension. Just two people sitting across the table from each other - one a seller, one a buyer.
There would be much interaction, lots of body language: an eyebrow raised, a gentle pounding of the palm of a hand on the table to emphasize a point, or maybe rubbing an ear when trying to put a thought into words as a question, lips slightly askew; chuckle thrown in here and there, and even a loud guffaw erupted occasionally. If you didn't know differently, you'd have thought they were "old friends."
When it broke up, the salesman was happy with a sale, and my Dad was happy knowing he would soon have the product he needed for his business. They'd shake hands, and that was that. Everyone was happy.
On To The Internet...
How do we get that same feeling of "one on one"? Why do we "connect" with one person but not another? After all, we really don't know anyone we haven't met, do we? What IS that "spark" that ignites the "fire?" Why do we "connect" with some people and not others? I've found so many kind and helpful people on the Internet, and I often wonder what "IT" is that causes that. Why do you join a program or two? Is it because somehow you seemed to "connect" with the owner(s)? You just "feel" you can trust them, right? Why?
I think a lot of it has to do with the fact they respond to your inquiries with a personal touch. They take the time to email you - not just send a cold impersonal autoresponder message. Ever emailed (to their personal email address) after receiving an autoresponder message and waited for a reply that never came? I have. Did you continue any further? I didn't.
Ever come across a great looking site and sent them an email complimenting them? Perhaps even feeling so "fired up and bold" that you throw in a question asking for a little help? I have. Still waiting for a reply? I am.
Ever unsubscribed from a newsletter because you don't have a clue who the editor is? There's no mention of a name? I have. How long does it take for someone to send a simple email? A "thank you" or even an acknowledgment that they've received it and will get back to you as soon as they can? Maybe soon they'll have all the time in the world! But it won't be on the Internet.
Be interactive. Let people know you're a real person on the other end of that mouse. Pretend you're seated across from me at a kitchen table on a hot summer evening with June bugs bouncing off the screens and distant heat lightning on the horizon.