No matter what business you are in, you’re in the business of trust, claims American author, speaker and “pool guy” Marcus Sheridan. Trust is crucial for success. It’s an asset that you simply can’t do business without.

One can argue that the sole purpose of marketing and communication is to earn trust among clients, employees and other stakeholders. So why is there so much distrust in the market place?

I can name a few companies that I trust. A handful of companies that deliver a great experience, every time. But I can also make an endless list of companies that I deeply distrust. And an even longer list of sales people that obviously believe that they are in the business of “give me your money now” and not in the business of trust.

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Last week I downloaded a white paper on email marketing strategy. It was provided by a global marketing software provider and the only thing they wanted for me in return was my name, email, business type, company size, phone number, title, age, food preferences and shoe size (almost).

A couple of hours later, before I even had a chance to read the white paper, I got a phone call (that I didn’t answer because… well, that’s what I do) and a very straight forward sales pitch in my inbox. I wanted a white paper, not a stalking sales guy.

Publishing a white paper, a blog post, a podcast or any other content to share your knowledge, expertise and passion is a great way of earning trust, building an audience and – in the end – generate leads. But one must bear in mind that building trust takes time. You have to prove your passion and knowledge over and over again.

On the other hand, trust can be ruined in the blink of an eye.

How do you build trust? Share your story in our Facebook group where marketers can learn from each other and grow smarter together.