7 Ways To Build Trust with Your Blog Readers

Establishing trust between you and your readership is critical to your blogging success. Without trust, there is very little chance of your blog ever making it big. When your readers trust you, they will recommend you to their friends and they will be more incline to buy a product or service recommended by you. Here are seven ways to gain the trust of your readers.

1 – Build The Relationship

Building trust is all about building relationship and the relationship on the blog starts at the About page. The amazing thing is, most bloggers don’t bother with that page. I’ve read countless blogs where the about page is still in the “This is an example of an about page” default. My About page is my second most viewed page after the main page. Your readers want to know who you are so if your About page is blank, fill it up!

I would recommend going beyond the About page with a personal post about your life every now and then. I read many other blogs that are in my niche and the ones that I always come back to are the ones that reveals more about its author. If all you do is stick to your topic and never deviate from it, you’re going to have a hard time separating yourself from the millions of other blogs talking about the same topics. Many blog readers relate to the writer more than the topic so let your personal style come out by telling how the topic affects you.

2 – Have Multiple Contact Points

At the very least you should have a contact page where your readers can email you. The more ways for readers to get in touch with you, the better and faster you can build that relationship. You should look beyond simple email and start taking advantages of social services like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, etc. Generally, the more contact points the better but don’t go overboard. Having too many contact points will just confuse the readers.

3 – Post Some Pictures or Videos of Yourself

Readers can relate to you more if they can connect a face to a name. Your About page should have at least a photo of yourself. This shows your readers that you’re not trying to hide behind some computer screen. It also makes you more trust worthy. If you want to go beyond that and really get personal, upload some videos of you and your daughter on vacation at Disneyland or show them what you’re having for lunch.

One of the best trust building video I’ve made was call The Dot Com Lifestyle. It’s why I have it on my blog front page. The video instantly create an emotional response with the readers. They see who I am and what I’m really about. Originally, I was going to put that video in my About page but decided to add it to the front page since it is the most viewed page.

4 – Setup an Email Auto Responder

My email system is one of the best trust building tools in my arsenal. When a new reader subscribes to my newsletter he is sent a series of emails that are designed to form a relationship by building trust. These emails are sent out automatically using the auto responder feature of Aweber.

You have a lot more control over the relationship building process with email than you do with a blog. The content on the blog is always changing and it can be hard to control the message. This is not a problem with email since you can tailor the message exactly the way you want and tweak it until it’s perfect.

In my post on How To Make 2011 Your Best Blogging Year, I said you need to start your mailing NOW. I can not overstate how important this is. I will go as far as to say that you will not find a single big money making blogger who does not have a mailing list. The mailing list is the foundation of your blog.

If you still don’t have an email list, head over the Aweber right now and sign up for an account. It only cost $1 for the first month and it’s back by a 30 day refund policy. They’ll give you the $1 back if you’re not happy.

$1 Aweber Offer

5 – Engage The Readers

Offering readers multiple contact point is nice but it’s worthless if you don’t engage them when they contact you. If a reader leaves a comment on your blog, then you should answer them. This is especially true if the comment is a question. The blog comment system is the best communication tool between the blogger and his readership. You should do everything possible to encourage blog comments.

The same holds true for Twitter, Facebook and other social media outlets. These tools are more than just a channel to spread your news. They’re also great to engage and get feedback from your readers.

6 – Meet Your Readers Face To Face

By far the most effective way to build trust with your readers is by face to face networking. Nothing build a connection more than being able to shake hands with your readers. This is why I attend so many trade shows and networking events. I have built many life-long friendships by attending events like Affiliate Summit, Blog World Expo, Ad Tech and many other events.

You don’t have to start with a major event like this Saturday’s Affiliate Summit. Start with local events and work your way up. Use Meetup.com or another service to find others who are blogging about the same stuff you’re blogging about. I’m sure you’ll find tons of event in your own backyard.

7 – Throw a Mega Party At a Major Trade Show

I threw up this last tip more in fun than anything else. Throwing a blow out party, like the Affiliate Summit Tip-Off Party, can run as high as $100,000 and it’s really more of a brand building exercise than a trust building one. However, a big part of branding is building trust. If you can elevate your brand, it will make you more trustworthy. However, I do recommend your blog to be well established and making a ton of money before blowing $100K on a party.

Affiliate Summit Tip Off Party


55 thoughts on “7 Ways To Build Trust with Your Blog Readers”

  1. Donny Gamble says:

    Videos are great for building trust and establishing a relationship with your readership. People feel like they have meet me already in person just by doing videos on my blog.

    1. d3so says:

      videos are more attractive.

      John’s killing it this year by starting off with viral list posts 😉

      1. ikki says:

        posts is the key to succesful blog

        1. ibnujusup says:

          agree… had to put some picture in my blog..haha 🙂 i totally forget about it

    2. dotCOMreport says:

      @Donny, so true. There is something personal about video and it makes readers feel like they are on your team which in turn gets them rooting for you.

    3. ikki says:

      im agree with you videos are very useful to show us to our readers

    4. Hey Donny and John, do you feel the need to put alot of extra work in the quality of the video production (buying highend camera, microphones, into animation, etc)??

      Do you think it affects conversion rates? Or do you feel this can depersonalize the reader?

      1. John Chow says:

        No, any Flip or digital camera that does video will do.

        1. Thanks John, sometimes I get ahead of myself and try to overdo things that are just plain simple. I guess I need more “doing” and less “planning”

    5. Alquma says:

      Good tips, I think the most important thing is “time” I have a blog with 3 years of age and I post every single day. I have 2 million visitors. The other important thing is like this article said is “engage” readers with interesting and useful posts that makes readers come back every day or at least every week to the blog.

    6. One question I have for all you bloggers is this:

      I recently heard that to do something over and over again (persistence) with getting no results, you continue to do it anyways… this is called insanity.

      I wonder how long we should keep on trying to make a fulltime income by blogging (and failing) before it’s considered insanity.

      On the other hand, I guess since John is here to teach us new techniques, technically we aren’t really trying the same things over and over again.

  2. Domain Nitro says:

    Wow, only one out of 7 for me – guess i better get busy in the new year!

  3. Dino says:

    Videos are great to do but its always hard to make them at times….

    1. PPC Ian says:

      Yeah, I agree! High return, but they can also take a lot of time to produce.

      1. But I have red according to video bloggers like gideon shalwik that they creates a video posts only in the 10 or 20 minutes for maximum return to their blogging business.

    2. certainly video is an important part of todays blog and with that you can also expect traffic as well.

  4. kimthong says:

    Thanks for the useful tips… Great job…!

  5. PPC Ian says:

    John, awesome post! Very informative. I see point 3 as a major opportunity for me, I definitely want to do more video.

  6. zeus says:

    You’re right. You have to be honest and build trust

  7. Building trust is especially important if you plan on making money with your site/blog. Your readers won’t just buy something right off bat if they feel you can’t be trusted.

    1. This is true. I’ve seen bloggers trying to sell things on a seperate splash page with limited success. And then when they sold the product on their blog they sales skyrocketed. I’ve even read an article about ProBlogger when he sold his ebook. Some people even emailed him saying that they didn’t even read what the ebook was about because they bought it only because they knew his content was good and they could trust him.

      After all we’re all humans and we all work almost the same. If we bought everything we saw we would be broke! 😛

      //Alexander.

  8. Loyal readers are the key to long-term success

    1. ikki says:

      loyal readers and be friendly with google

  9. I like the idea of Metup.com just checked it out, thanks John!!

  10. Mr.Ven says:

    I think many of the commentators are internet marketers looking to build links via comments. And i see like they are running behind big-blogs !
    I am not against comment system, definitely the skill of a blogger out-stands in engaging his readers and to drive more interaction among readers !

    1. comments are here for both profit. Commentators get recognition (provided they add valuable comments) and blog owner can easily communicate with them.

  11. Fred Tracy says:

    Thanks John. I actually changed my ‘about me’ page specifically because of this page. I think it’s much more personable now and true to me.

  12. Thanks for this excellent tips. This is definitely a big help for me in order to further improve my blog.

  13. Blog Traffic says:

    Great Post John. I have just started a few new blogs and I definitely forgot about the About page on all of them. I will get those updated today!

    1. I have the about page on my blog and that is the second most visited page in year 2010.

  14. Wasim Ismail says:

    Some nice points here, best one is about building an email list, and having your image or video on your site, as this shows the readers who you really are,

  15. Lucian says:

    The tip with the party is not applicable to everyone, while you are small there are many issues with having a party on your own,

    1. ikki says:

      only the blogstars like john can host a party like this

  16. The Dot Com Lifestyle video is one of the most motivating I have ever seen in a blog.

  17. Craig White says:

    I made a post sticky when I started that was about our reason for being here and what our objectives for blogging where and how we are sharing info that can help other. This post has a really big pic of my wife and I. I have always wondered if this was a good thing to do or not. After reading this I think I have decided to leave it there.

    If you have time John, take a look at our blog and give me your opinion of the positioning of this post.

    Thanks,
    Craig

  18. Abhik says:

    Another great and motivational post..
    Thanks John.

    1. ikki says:

      im agree with you, john always tips us with great information

  19. Meetup.com sounds interesting. I’ve never heard of it before but definitely sounds worth trying!

    1. Sounds great! Unfortunately there are no events in my area except for medium sized dog owners 🙁 Lol

  20. fas says:

    Not everyone can throw a party like you John.

  21. ikki says:

    nice tips john, u always sharing good things

  22. Pry says:

    I still kept trying to do your business tips …… but I am not a professional like you, who have a lot of business associates, and has been trusted from many clients, it is very difficult jhon but I will still try to do that ….. terimakasi for your support.
    would you pleas visit my blog……
    http://entrussajavanist.blogspot.com
    http://lingua-mysite.blogspot.com
    and give me your opinion about my blog conten.TQ

  23. Amanda says:

    These are good tips for a blog which is already in motion and has readers – but what I am curious to know is how to build relationships and trust when your blog is just starting out!

  24. Pumama says:

    Hi, May be i found a mistake:
    “The amazing thing is, most bloggers don’t | brother | with that page”
    brother==> bother ?

    1. Haha, yeh I’ve found small spelling mistakes like that in some posts as well, but I always forget to comment on it. It’s verry hard since software such as Microsoft Word does not react to words placed in the wrong meaning. So the spelling-fixer won’t bother giving an error and it’s really easy to miss something like that when writing past 1000 words in an article. I didn’t even notice it while reading the article. 😛

      Anyways, shit happends. 😛
      //Alexander.

  25. All this is great. Sometimes though it seems that only the junk offers are really selling. Check out what is in the top ten at Clickbank for Ebusiness and Marketing. They all seem to be software that promises to make you money by clicking a few buttons. People are buying that as well as make money taking survey offers.

  26. Sounds like a Problogger post.

  27. Simon Potts says:

    Good reading. Discovered your blog recently and am enjoying your tips and advice. Keep it coming

  28. Jimmy says:

    i think building relationship and posting videos and images is best………

  29. nintendo 3ds says:

    The best points according to me are the ‘about us’ page and the Multiple contact points.

    Many of us, simply ignore the importance of the about us page (I am one of them) but i’ll make the necessary corrections soon.

    Thank You John.

    Cheers

  30. Building the relationships, engaging the readers and also meeting the bloggers offline at parties and events are some great ways to gain the trust.

  31. Thanks for the info, I agree that you need to build a trust with your readers. Sometimes both offline and online. You gave a good tip that you should have personal information and media, such as information about your life and pictures of yourself. I always start with creating the “About” page and biography page since I know people will check them out. Because that’s where thry can decide if the blog is really something that they want to continue reading and if the author seems legit.

    Anyways, thanks again for this great post, I leasrned some new things as well and that’s a big bonus (as usually with your posts). Have a great day! =)

    //Alexander.

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