You’re likely learning how to build trust in relationships, because know, like, trust are the three things that fuel content marketing. And if you’re not hitting all three, you’re likely not enjoying success with your content.
Traditional marketing is big on the know — it’s all about creating awareness in the marketplace. Add in some clever messaging to prompt some level of liking, and mission accomplished, right?
It’s as if awareness of a brand is enough to spark trust. And it’s true — we do tend to prefer brands that we know, even if there’s no true difference between one product and a generic one.
But when it comes down to choosing between two or more brands, trust becomes critical. This is one of the benefits that content marketers have over competitors who don’t learn how to build trust in relationships — who don’t write better content and freely share valuable information.
And it can be a substantial benefit if done correctly.
Why building trust in relationships is important
Building trust in relationships is important for content marketing because trust works on many levels:
- Do you do what you say you’re going to do?
- Are your products and services solid?
- Do you treat customers fairly?
- Will you be in business next year?
- Do you abide by the core values you claim?
Storyselling that touches on each of these over time helps prospects view you as not only trustworthy, but generous. Even selfless.
3 ways to build trust in a relationship
In terms of persuasion techniques dating back to the time of Aristotle, ethos is an appeal to the authority, honesty, and credibility of the person speaking or writing.
And that’s exactly how to build trust in relationships, when content marketing is done well.
Aristotle also thought that a key component of effective ethos was a combination of likability and selflessness, which he characterized as “disinterested goodwill.”
Disinterest here doesn’t mean you don’t care if you get a beneficial outcome — it means you serve your audience whether or not you get that benefit from any particular person.
The art of disinterested goodwill
When you give away quality content that’s so good you could have charged money for it, you’re acting with “disinterested goodwill.” That means your audience received value regardless of whether they ever pay you a dime.
It’s this very aspect of content marketing that makes it unacceptable to some business people who want to make a living online. The thought of providing something valuable to “freeloaders” just drives them nuts.
I’ve been giving away free, valuable content for more than 20 years, and all nine successful businesses I’ve started were powered by it. I have complete faith that I’m going to get benefits back — and the know, like, and trust I earn is the entire reason.
Just the act of performing content marketing triggers the power of disinterested goodwill. Lacking that, there are three techniques that professional writers use to achieve the same goal when learning how to build trust in relationships.