Building Trust Online

Friday, August 07, 2015

There's a myth floating around that says that in order to be successful online and build trust with potential clients, you have to spill your guts about every aspect of your life.

Fortunately, this isn't true. Multiple studies have shown that trust increases more with predictability than it does with an increase in self-disclosure.

If the current trend of keeping it (overly) real and out-authenticizing each other with long Instagram captions leaves you uncomfortable, you're not alone. Yes, people want to connect with you on a personal level, but oversharing and TMI actually turns them off.

Oversharing can even build distrust, particularly if you're openly discussing your spouse or kids in an embarrassing way. When a potential client sees this, the thought process tends to be: "If they're willing to talk about their family this way  their most important relationships  then what will they say about me?"

Want to use social media effectively to build more trust with potential clients? Show up more often. Be real. Set boundaries. Not allowing strangers to have access to every part of your life does not make you any less authentic.

Originally published March 2012

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