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How to Establish Trust with your list

by Mark Widawer

How you get someone to not only give you their name and email address, but also their phone number, street address, and other information depends a lot on what it is that you're trying to get them to opt into.

The answer, though, in general, is a little bit at a time.

The thing you have to keep in mind when you're trying to get an opt-in or sell something online is that by default people don't trust you. It's maybe a hard thing to get over, because you are, after all, a nice person, but you have to assume that people don't trust you.

The way to gain their trust is not by saying, "I'm trustworthy" or not by saying, "Trust me," which I think are two of the most dangerous words in the English language.

The way to gain their trust is by actually demonstrating trust. The way that you do that in this area is pretty straightforward. I'm going to assume that we're dealing with an information product of some sort here, or perhaps a mortgage or something like that, not a physical product so much but a financial product in this case.

The way that you do this is that you offer something in exchange for a little bit of information, and then as time goes on you ask for increasing levels of information.

For example, How To Shop For The Best Mortgage might be an offer that you're making, or, how about "Turn The Refi Mumbo Jumbo Into Plain English With This Easy Guide," or something like that.

So,if you're selling mortgages and you're looking for leads, if you offer an e-book or report like that, then you're likely to get some people offering up just their name and email address.

What's a second thing that you might be able to do? Frankly, the first thing you do after that is you deliver them the information that they asked for, and then you follow up that information.

You can point out over two or three more emails, "Make sure that you pay attention to what's on page 3 here. That's critically important. If you find this clause in your contract, make sure that they remove it because it's illegal in seven states," or whatever it is.

The next stage might be, "We can guide you to some mortgage brokers that are known to comply with certain standards." So you get perhaps more information from them, like the state they're living in or maybe even the city that they're living in.

Then, further down the line, maybe you can even send them something physically. Maybe you can send them a printed report or a CD, which by the way are incredibly inexpensive to create these days. You can have a CD made for $1 and have it shipped for another $1, which is an incredibly low cost per lead.

But the point is, if you're going to be sending them something physical, what do you have to ask them for now? You're going to be asking for their actual address.

If you can imagine yourself in the very same spot as the person you're trying to solicit and you said at the start, "Hi, I'm going to send you this information on mortgages. Give me your name, address, phone number, and the last four digits of your Social Security number," I think you might even on your own realize that's a lot to ask for somebody I don't even know. You'd have to question the intelligence of somebody who sold that out from the start, assuming that they're asking for the Social, because certainly that's not a smart thing to do.

So, how do you get a full record of information on an individual person? The answer is like so many things in life, one step at a time. Gain their confidence incrementally by establishing trust and by providing additional value along each step of the way.

This article is by Mark Widawer. Mr. Widawer is the author of the widly acclaimed "Landing Page Cash Machine", which really shares some insight on not only converting visitors into buyers, but on what makes an Internet Marketing business work, and how you can take traffic that would have been worth only pennies and convert it into hundreds of dollars.

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