When selling services the key to achieving a better sales conversion rate of quality, profitable clients is to increase the level of trust that the prospect has in you. Lets face it, most trades businesses are service-based first and product-based second, despite what you may think.  People do business with people that they know, like and trust.  It is your job before you ask for the sale to get to know your prospective client better, do things to make them like you (chopping your price excluded) and have them build up trust in you and your company.

So how do you go about increasing trust?  Luckily there is a formula for achieving just that and it goes like this:

Trust = Credibility + Reliability + Intimacy – Self-orientation

The idea is to take actions to increase credibility, reliability and intimacy and avoid behaviours that demonstrate self-orientation.  Some suggestions on what these actions could include are listed below.

Increase credibility through words and stories.

  • Newsletters/guides/tip sheets
  • Proposals
  • Staff qualifications
  • Testimonials
  • Do your homework on the client and their desires and frustrations
  • Don’t tell lies or exaggerate, ever.

Increase reliability through actions

  • Under promise and over deliver
  • Go the extra mile. Deliver in person
  • Use client-focused language
  • Return phone calls very quickly
  • Better meet and greet

Increase intimacy through regular contact, empathy and caring.

  • Learn about family
  • “Just thinking about your situation” call
  • On-site visits
  • Events and entertainment. Fun attitude (if appropriate)

Decrease self-orientation by listening more and always being client focussed.

  • Let the client fill the gaps
  • Ask open ended questions.
  • Reflective listening
  • Taking most of the responsibility for failed communications


For help in implementing these things into your business email me at andy@tradescoach.co.nz and we can set up a meeting to discuss your particular needs.

Andy Burrows  –  The Trades Coach