As a marketing advisor, the only real asset you have is trust.
Without trust, you have no business. Period.
So how do you build and maintain trust with your clients and community at large?
Here are the main ways as I see it:
- Maintain honesty and integrity at all times.
- Actually be an expert at what you do.
- Always act in the best interest of your clients.
- Focus on achieving the results they’re paying for.
- Be consistent in how and when you show up.
- Follow through on your commitments.
- Play the long game at all times.
Things will happen. You will need to make tough choices. You will make mistakes along the way.
Maybe you’ll need to tell your client that their company’s value proposition is mediocre. That they need a better business strategy for their marketing to succeed.
And they won’t want to hear that. At first. They’ll want you to do more “things” to make it work.
Or, maybe you need to own up to a mistake or acknowledge a lack of expertise on a subject they expected you to have.
They won’t want to hear that, either. But they’ll appreciate you telling them.
As an advisor, you need to be acting in your clients’ best interest at all times. Even if it comes at a personal cost to you.
Especially when it comes at a personal cost to you.
And that means being radically honest, among other things. It means making decisions that are hard for you but best for your clients.
It means playing the long game.
Behaving this way is what will make you a successful advisor. Putting yourself on the line for your clients is what they pay you for.
It’s rare because it’s hard. And that’s what makes it so valuable.
So my gentle reminder to you is this: always optimize for trust by focusing on the client’s best interest, not yours. Even when it’s hard.
Your clients will respect you for that. But the best part is, you’ll respect yourself, too.