I’m sure you’ve read or maybe heard the research that says people prefer to do business with people they know, like and trust, right? It sounds nice, but what does it really mean to know, like, and trust someone? And how do you build trust on your website? That’s what we’re going to talk about today and how you can make this happen through your website. You’ll see that the things we talk about you can apply other places. So if you don’t have a website yet, that’s totally fine. You can probably incorporate these things just on your Instagram stories or in your emails. And as you are listening to today’s episode, I’d love if you would take a screenshot as you’re listening and post it to your Instagram stories and tag me @jesscreatives so I can know who is listening.

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Let’s start with the knowing.

Now, this kind of knowing that we’re trying to achieve is not just surface knowledge where people have seen your name, maybe your logo. This kind of reminds me of … I follow several hundred people on Instagram, and there are some that I talk to on a weekly basis, some even daily, and there are some that I follow that I don’t ever talk to. I don’t even know their name. I don’t know their business. I see their posts, I see their stories, but I’m like, “What do they do again?” This is in part because I follow a couple hundred people, so it’s hard to personally know all 600. But, it’s also probably due to their content and what they’re posting on Instagram. It hasn’t really engaged with me. It hasn’t really taught me anything. It hasn’t inspired me. And that’s what’s important with our online presence. Whether it’s your website, or your Instagram, or Facebook, whatever, it has to engage, or inspire, or educate us.

When it comes to creating this level of knowing on your website specifically (and building that trust on your website), this is where content comes into play. I know I’ve been talking about content a lot lately, and I promise not all the know, like, and trust has to do with content specifically. But the knowing, that is where content makes magic happen. But, it can’t just be any content. This content needs to be clear on who you’re talking to. You need to identify your target market, your ideal client, and talk specifically to them.

I think about when I first started blogging six or seven years ago and I would start blog posts like, “If you need a new logo for your school, church, business, nonprofit, organization, then we can talk about this,” whatever. No. I was targeting way too many people. So you need to get clear on who you’re talking to. I don’t mean that you also have to name them in each post. It doesn’t have to be like, “If you are an entrepreneur, if you are a dietician,” whatever. You don’t have to specifically name them every single time, but it needs to be clear who you’re talking to.

Your content also needs to position and prove yourself as an authority in your industry. You need to give strong evidence. You need to have a strong opinion. You need to research, and ask questions, and dig deep to really provide value to your audience. It’s also really important to share your personality in your content. Because like I said, we want to know you, and we need to know your personality as well. This gives your content life. It makes it memorable. It makes people want to share and comment.

The last thing I’ll say about the content on your website is that it does not have to be blogging. It can be videos or podcasts. As I’ve mentioned in previous episodes, if you are creating other content besides just written content, it’s important that it lives on your website as well because just because you have a YouTube icon or podcast icon, whatever, on your website doesn’t mean people are going to click over and watch or listen. Make it easily accessible right there on your website. And bonus point, it’ll help your SEO as well.

Now, moving on to the liking part of you. I want to preface this with not everyone’s going to like you.

Not everyone in your ideal target market is going to like you. Hopefully we already know this because it’s the internet. Not everyone’s going to like us. That’s okay. I also want to say if you share a strong opinion and you get some pushback, if you get a few mean comments, that’s okay. You are standing up for what you believe. Also, there is a delete button that you can use. Now, I’m not saying you have to or should delete every comment that is against what you’re saying, but if they are being mean or hateful, then just click delete. Move on. We don’t need to give them any more attention or fuel. Just delete and move on.

But again, we have to know who you are to begin to like you. We need to be authentic and real. We need to initiate conversations and be relevant. We also need to be visible. I can’t like you if I don’t see you. It’s kind of like a real life in-person friendship. If I don’t see you that often, do we really have a friendship? If I don’t see you for three years, are we still friends? Don’t get me wrong. I have plenty of online friends that I only see once or twice a year, so maybe that’s not the best analogy out there, especially with all these online friendships we have now. But hopefully you get what I’m saying. We have to see you to be able to form a relationship.

When it comes to creating that likability on your website, we literally need to see you. We need to see pictures of you. I know a lot of you don’t like having your pictures taken. I get it. It’s not fun. It doesn’t have to be pictures of you all over your websites. You don’t have to be plastered across every page, but at least I have one picture at the very, very bare minimum, if not maybe two or three. It can just be small pictures. You don’t have to have your face on the main banner at the top of every page. That’s fine. And again, we want to hear and see your personality either in those pictures or in your copy. Some people choose to have 10 fun facts on their about page. This is an easy way to really connect with people, show them your personal side.

And another great way, going back to content, is to share case studies. I know it can be difficult because in the health and wellness realm there’s a lot of privacy and confidentiality so you would have to kind of figure out a way to make this work in your own business. And obviously talk to your clients before you do a writeup on them. But, showing people how you work with your clients, what you focus on, your approach, that’s going to help them connect with your work and with you. They’re going to say, “Oh my gosh. Amy has such a great approach. I have seen this breakdown in her case study with a past client, and I love that approach, how she does the check-ins every single morning,” or whatever it is that hopefully really, really resonates with that reader.

If you can’t do a case study on one particular person, maybe you could do a roundup kind of case study where if you have a program that runs in a group format every few months, maybe you do a case study of that group and you just highlight different feedback that you got highlighting, “This group really had a lot of struggles with XYZ, and we worked on this. We had an extra workshop. We had an extra group call,” whatever, to really show the work that you’re doing in your approach.

And last, but certainly not least, we want to build trust on your website.

Obviously, this is super important because we want people to trust us so they feel comfortable paying us because that’s how we have a business. People pay us. This is probably the hardest one because it’s harder to build that trust virtually just because there’s something different about meeting someone in person and building that trust and relationships. You want to make sure you’re not disappointing people. If you say you’re going to send an email every day, then send an email every day. That is super simple and basic, but it’s important. Even just those minor details will matter.

Building trust through your website is going to happen through testimonials. Now, this can also happen through those case studies we just talked about, but testimonials are going to be so powerful. People want to know that you’ve worked with other people and those people got results. Now again, I know privacy and confidentiality can be tricky in the health and wellness world, so with testimonials know that you do not have to include pictures, but you can, and you don’t have to use their full name. You can just say Amy. You don’t have to put her last name or you can change names. I recently had a client who made up names for each of the clients just so there was no chance of anybody knowing who it was.

The hard part is that not all testimonials are created equally. Some are better than others. As I’ve probably mentioned in a past episode, having a testimonial that’s just like, “Jessica was really nice,” is not going to cut it. That doesn’t tell me anything. Everybody, for the most part, is nice. In your feedback forms, hopefully you are using a feedback or testimonial form. Don’t just email your client and say, “Hey, can I get a testimonial?” That’s too broad, too open-ended. People don’t know what to say. That’s why they end up saying, “Oh, she’s so nice and so helpful.” You need to have a form to help them kind of figure out that feedback.

My feedback form has a few different questions, and I want to share them with you.

First, I say, “How would you rate Jess Creatives meeting your expectations?” And they get to rate on a scale of 0 to 10. Then, how would you rate the pricing? How would you rate the timeline? And how would you rate the overall experience? This is partially just feedback for me. It’s not exactly a testimonial, but it’s good feedback for me.

Then, I ask, “If you had a free consult call before hiring me, was it beneficial? If you had a strategy call, was it beneficial?” Because some people don’t have a strategy calls, some do. Then, this next question is usually a gold mine for getting really good parts of a testimonial. What was the obstacle that caused you to decide you needed to hire someone for help? That gives me usually the first part of the testimonial because I usually take a few of these responses and piece it together. I’m not cutting sentences in half to make something sound different. I’m not doing that. But usually, a testimonial, I will add these sentences together to create a paragraph for a testimonial.

Then I’ll ask, “Why did you specifically hire me? Was it something I said, something you saw? Was it the price? Was I the only person you could find?” This helps me know, again, was it was it something I said? Were you just referred? That helps me know what’s working in my marketing. Then, I ask, “What was your biggest fear before hiring me, and did it come true? And if not, what happened instead?” This, again, is a gold mine question because, especially in the web design world, people have this fear of like, “Oh, the designer’s going to run away with all my money,” or, “I’m not going to get a website I like,” so this has always been a really good question for me to ask.

The next question is, was there any part of working with me that you would have liked to see done differently? Again, this is more feedback for me, not necessarily something that goes in the testimonial. And then lastly, I say, “Imagine sitting down for coffee with one of your friends. They’re thinking about hiring a graphic designer and ask you about working with me. You would say dot, dot, dot.” Now, this question gets them a mix of responses. Some people fill it out great, and they’re like, “Jessica was so great,” but like really specific. And then some people are really short and say like, “She’s great. Hire her.” I’m like, “Well, that’s not what I was looking for, but good try.” But, hopefully you can see in these questions I’m really focusing on kind of like a before and after, and a fear and this is what actually happened. Because again, I want to address those fear in the potential clients that want to work with me because they may have those same fears.

I also have a video testimonial compilation. Now, it’s a few years old. and to be honest, it’s kind of funny. It’s not just a boring video of clients talking about me. It’s kind of humorous, but it’s still good. If you can get clients to do video testimonials, that can be amazing. Just tell them to hold their phone horizontal. Don’t make it vertical. Please do not make it vertical. Or just record on their computer. Have it be a 1- to 2-minute video. We don’t need this to be a 5- to 10-minute video. People aren’t going to watch it that long. They just want to hear, “Hey, she was great. I saw these kinds of results,” et cetera. Again, can be tricky because people like their privacy and confidentiality when they are working on their health, so this may be hard to make happen, but it is worth asking.

So to recap, we’re going to build the know factor through our content so people know that we are trustworthy, and that we know what we’re talking about, and they get to know our personality. We’re going to build the likeability through case studies and showing ourselves online. And we’re going to build the trust on our website through social proof and testimonials.

If you’re not seeing the results that you want in your business, if you’re not converting the amount of sales you want in your business, I strongly, strongly recommend adding or boosting one of these factors into your website and see what changes happen. This might also be a great time to get a website analysis. This is a quick service that I provide to my clients where I comb through your entire website and you get specific recommendations on design, copy, layout, and SEO. This is usually a three- to four-page PDF, and this is single space PDF, with these specific recommendations that help you fine-tune your website and help it be more strategic in reaching your goals. If you have any questions, I’d love for you to reach out on Instagram @jesscreatives, and I will see you all next week.

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