Relationships, Trust and Credibility
It seems that as our industry grows, there are more and more people jumping headlong into the affiliate marketing arena. The problem is that many of these people have no experience, yet they boast their accomplishments as if they’ve been marketing masters for years. In reality, this behavior harms the credibility of those who truly know what they are doing and are trying to provide value to their contacts.
The problem we face is building trust and credibility in order to stand out from the rest of the crowd. This can be done by taking some proactive measures.
Let’s take a closer look at building trust, relationships and credibility in affiliate marketing, and how you can avoid being just another hack-n-slash marketer, swinging blindly in the dark.
Why Build Relationships?
Building relationships is the foundation for any successful affiliate marketing campaign. From the initial contact with your subscribers you are constantly building your relationship.
The days of calling campaigns “a numbers game” are over. People are much more savvy to Internet practices than they have ever been. You should be much more sensitive to the needs of your readers and actually deliver what they need, which is honest, useful and unique information.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Is your sales pitch the same sales pitch thousands of other affiliates are using?
- How are you standing apart from them?
- After initial contact, how are you treating your subscribers?
- Are you following through with them regularly?
- Are you delivering what you promised…when you said you would?
Take a look at your campaign and marketing tactics to make sure you are geared towards building a quality relationship over time. It will have a lasting effect on your relationships.
Can You be Trusted?
After developing a relationship over time with your clients, you will eventually reach a level of trust with them. This is incredibly important if you want people to buy from you.
Here are a few ideas that will help you build trust with your readers.
- Exceed Expectations
Always give more than what is expected from you.
- Reply to and Help Your Readers
Are you reachable? Do you respond to your subscribers?
- Make Sure All Email Messages are Updated and Links Work
Are you maintaining your messages, links and images in your account?
- Communicate Using Personalization
Are you using personalization to enhance the experience between you and your readers?
- Build A Community
How are you fostering a community atmosphere within your email campaigns and elsewhere?
- Respect Privacy
Are you keeping your subscribers information confidential? Are you telling them that you will do exactly that?
If you go the extra mile for your subscribers, they will do the same for you. Use the above examples, as well as your own ideas, to come up with ways you can enhance the trust between yourself and your readers.
Grow Your Credibility
Hand in hand with trust and relationships is credibility. Once you have established yourself, you must maintain your reputation and be a credible marketer.
Credibility With Your Peers
A great way to gain credibility is by gaining the respect of your peers within your industry. If your good reputation grows with them, it will certainly grow elsewhere.
Take some time to evaluate where you are professionally and how you are perceived by your peers as far as reputation, then correct yourself accordingly.
- Reach out to them on a one-on-one level
- Ask for feedback
- Involve yourself in industry-related forums and platforms, such as LinkedIn
Once you gain this respect, you have a good chance of earning their endorsement, and pushing your marketing even further.
Credibility in Your Industry
Your peers will also begin to respect and endorse you more if you are an active contributor in your industry. If your voice is heard, and that voice is one providing sound and useful feedback, you will grow in credibility as time goes by.
Take some time to get yourself heard. Here are some great avenues:
- Feedback and information posted in forums
- Attending ( and speaking at ) conferences and get-togethers.
- Attending teleseminars and webinars
- Guest blogging and article writing
As you make your presence known and offer something other than a sales pitch, you will certainly grow in credibility both with your peers and your industry as a whole.
“Trust is one of the biggest factor for successful affiliate marketing. While you may be able make some quick bucks by misleading people, in the end, you’ll be giving up a lot more in the end. And besides, you’ll feel better about your business and yourself as well if you start from a position of trust.”