Trust Matters: Renowned Author John Hall on Trust, Influencers, and Events for Brand Success

Trust Matters: Renowned Author John Hall on Trust, Influencers, and Events for Brand Success

Building trust for your business is among today's top priorities for fostering long-term relationships, enhancing your brand image, and driving sustainable growth. To help out more in this arena, our CMO, Erik Newton, was joined by John Hall, author of the hit book Top of Mind, co-founder of, and the Chief Strategist of Relevance.
Nainika Sharma
Content Marketer
June 30, 2023

Building trust is essential for a business as it directly impacts customer loyalty, brand reputation, and overall success. According to the Edelman Trust Barometer 2021, 81% of customers stated that they need to trust a brand before making a purchase decision, while 79% of consumers consider brand trust a critical factor in their brand loyalty. Additionally, the BrightLocal Local Consumer Review Survey 2023 found that 89% of consumers read online reviews often or always before making a purchase, and 89% of consumers read online reviews often or always before making a purchase' These statistics highlight the significance of trust in influencing consumer behavior. Establishing trust with customers encourages repeat purchases and brand loyalty, contributes to a positive brand reputation, and attracts new customers.

Building trust for your business is among today's top priorities for fostering long-term relationships, enhancing your brand image, and driving sustainable growth. To help out more in this arena, our CMO, Erik Newton, was joined by John Hall, author of the hit book Top of Mind, co-founder of, and the Chief Strategist of Relevance. With brewing conversations on building trust, forging genuine connections, and creating mind-blowing experiences, the insightful discussion aimed to answer the most sought-after questions on building trust and credibility.

Let's dig deeper into some key takeaways from the conversation between Erik and John. 

Understanding the landscape of trust and cultivating trustworthiness

While trust challenges were traditionally linked to politics and media, the focus has shifted to encompass influencer and brand trust. Trust plays a pivotal role in fostering customer loyalty and advocacy, making it indispensable for companies and influencers to prioritize establishing a robust trust strategy. Effectively building trust entails incorporating elements such as meaningful personal interactions, leveraging visual cues, and addressing customer concerns. 

As the significance of trust continues to grow, conscious efforts are required across marketing, sales, and recruiting to shoulder the burden. Although reviews and third-party validation contribute significantly to trust-building, it is crucial to strike a balance and avoid fixating solely on reviews. Implementing processes that encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews and promptly address any negative feedback is paramount. By proactively managing trust and integrating trust-building strategies, organizations can adeptly navigate the ever-evolving landscape and cultivate enduring relationships with their audience.

Humanizing a brand's personality

A robust brand presence not only enhances the likelihood of attracting new customers but also boosts employee motivation and instills a shared sense of purpose within your business. To successfully cultivate a compelling brand image, it's essential to have a deep understanding of your customers. This understanding is the foundation for humanizing your brand, making it relatable and resonant with your target audience. 

John emphasizes that authenticity and genuine enthusiasm are crucial in building trust, as audiences can sense whether someone is simply going through the motions or genuinely passionate about their product or service. Personalization and relatability can be applied across various channels, including email templates that can be scaled while still maintaining a human touch. Blogs, for example, offer an opportunity to incorporate personalized examples, vulnerability, and research data to make the brand more relatable. Videos, particularly webinars, are also compelling since they allow immediate personalization through facial expressions and energy. 

By envisioning your brand as an entity that customers can connect with and find common ground, you create an environment where genuine relationships can flourish. Embracing this approach empowers your brand to become a trusted companion that customers can identify with, further strengthening their loyalty and affinity. 

Digging into Top of Mind: Exploring critical thoughts

Companies and influencers must develop a trust strategy. A survey has shown that 46% of consumers would pay more for the brands they trust. This strategy should consider various factors contributing to building trust, such as in-person interactions, visual cues, and humanizing experiences. Building trust is not rocket science; it involves understanding what forms trust in different contexts. For example, trust can be established through voice alone when engaging with someone over the phone. However, trust deepens when meeting face-to-face and experiencing the person's presence.

"The concept of 'top of mind' came to light during a speech in Phoenix. A friend recognized the value of using 'top of mind' as a way to engage people in marketing and sales. Since then, the phrase has repeatedly appeared in conversations, emphasizing the desire to be remembered and considered at the right time. The concept of being 'top of mind' extends beyond professional settings," says John. 

This methodology of staying "top of mind" is something genuinely engaging individuals have employed. By studying psychology and observing effective marketing and sales approaches, it became apparent that establishing trust and being remembered positively are essential goals for every marketer and salesperson. The power of trust lies in its ability to create a deep connection that feels familiar and comfortable, similar to reconnecting with a friend after a long absence. When customers trust a brand and feel it is "top of mind," they are likelier to return, spend more, and overlook barriers like price.

Leveraging virtual to boost trust

Virtual speaking engagements have become a powerful tool, particularly in light of the lessons learned during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

John says, "Before the global health crisis, I was constantly on the road, engaging in numerous speaking engagements. However, as circumstances shifted, I focused more on virtual presentations, webinars, and online platforms. In fact, I was fortunate to secure the top spot on the list of virtual speakers on, opening up exciting opportunities to expand my reach and impact.

"Reducing the number of in-person speaking engagements allowed me to prioritize my family while maintaining significant professional success. I could generate comparable earnings despite only participating in six physical events last year." 

The benefits of virtual speaking are multifaceted. Not only does it enable scalability and accessibility for both speakers and attendees, but it also offers cost-effective options for organizations with limited budgets. Virtual platforms provide unique advantages, such as engaging directly with attendees and personalizing interactions. It allows you to address participants by name to foster a sense of connection and rapport. This level of personalized engagement is impossible when addressing thousands of individuals in a physical setting. Furthermore, virtual events allow for valuable insights and data analysis, such as attendee demographics and participation rates, which can inform future marketing strategies and content creation.

When it comes to marketing and building trust, an integrated approach is key. Incorporating webinars, blogs, and other content channels allows for comprehensive and varied dissemination of knowledge. People have different preferences regarding receiving information, and providing diverse formats caters to these preferences. After a webinar, for example, it's essential to nurture the audience by directing them to relevant blog posts, newsletters, or other resources, facilitating natural conversions and further engagement.

Micro-influencers and how to work with them

Micro-influencers have emerged as valuable assets in marketing and brand promotion. These individuals may have a small following of macro-influencers, but they possess a niche audience that's highly engaged and receptive to their recommendations. Engaging with micro-influencers can yield authentic and effective marketing results, allowing businesses to tap into targeted communities and build trust among their audiences.

You can find micro-influencers through both personal connections and digital means. One strategy is to leverage events such as trade shows or conferences where industry professionals and speakers gather. Engaging with micro-influencers in these settings can help establish valuable connections and explore potential collaborations.

Additionally, digital and scalable methods exist to identify micro-influencers who align with your brand through content engagement. You can identify potential micro-influencers who resonate with your brand message by contacting individuals who actively engage with your content.

According to John, when approaching micro-influencers, it's crucial to understand what they value and offers them something of worth. This can extend beyond monetary compensation. For instance, you can provide them with exposure and syndication deals through your blog or other platforms. By featuring them in your content, you offer them increased visibility and traffic to their own channels. This mutually beneficial arrangement can foster solid relationships and long-term partnerships.

It's important to note that while financial compensation may be necessary in some cases, it is worth exploring opportunities where budget constraints can be accommodated. Instead of investing significant money in a single macro-influencer, consider distributing your resources among multiple micro-influencers. This approach allows for a wider reach, increased diversity of audiences, and a more comprehensive brand presence.

Maximizing impact: Repurposing webinar content for ongoing impact

Repurposing webinar content is a strategic approach to solidifying your position as an industry leader. By creating pillar content that aligns with your vision of owning a specific market segment, you can focus on crafting high-quality webinars, long-form guides, or books that genuinely showcase your expertise and provide value to your audience. These core pieces become the foundation for your content strategy, enabling you to deliver exceptional content and drive conversions.

Understanding the power of repurposing, you can leverage various formats to extend the reach and impact of your webinar content. Blogs, videos, and social media snippets reinforce your brand message and establish trust with your target audience. By repackaging key insights and takeaways from your webinars, you can cater to different preferences and consumption habits, maximizing the value of your content.

Repurposing allows you to amplify your message and ensures consistency across multiple channels. Maintaining a cohesive content strategy strengthens your brand's identity and increases brand recall among your audience. As you strategically distribute repurposed content, you expand your reach, attract new prospects, and nurture existing relationships.

Implementing a thoughtful repurposing strategy requires a clear vision and an understanding of your target market's needs and preferences. By reverse-engineering your goals and crafting content aligning with your industry ownership aspirations, you can establish yourself as the go-to source for your niche. Repurposing empowers you to showcase your expertise in diverse formats, enhancing your credibility and influence within your industry.

Announcing Hubilo's Snackable Content Hub

Did you know that, despite webinars being a top marketing initiative for over 60% of global brands, a staggering 80% of this valuable content remains untapped and underutilized? It's a significant loss of potential value. Time constraints are often cited as a substantial reason, but various challenges hinder content repurposing, such as resource limitations and uncertainty about the appropriate platforms to utilize. Fortunately, Hubilo has addressed this challenge head-on for its customers. 

With Hubilo's Snackable Content Hub, you can effortlessly create multiple assets in one go. This innovative platform instantly builds a comprehensive library from your webinar by leveraging automatic AI-generated shareable content. If you're intrigued and eager to be an early adopter, now's your chance to join our waitlist and be on your way to unlocking the full potential of your webinar content.

Frequently asked questions about building trust

Why is building trust important for businesses?

Building trust is crucial for businesses because it forms the foundation of strong relationships with customers, employees, partners, and stakeholders. Trust fosters loyalty, enhances brand reputation, drives customer satisfaction, and ultimately leads to business growth and success.

How can businesses build trust with their customers?

Businesses can build trust with their customers by consistently delivering on their promises, providing excellent customer success, being transparent and honest in their communications, maintaining data privacy and security, and demonstrating a genuine commitment to meeting customer needs and expectations.

What role does communication play in building trust?

Communication plays a vital role in building trust as it allows businesses to establish open and transparent lines of communication with their customers. Effective communication involves active listening, clear and honest messaging, timely responses to customer inquiries and concerns, and regular updates to keep customers informed and engaged.

How can businesses rebuild trust after a breach or mistake?

Rebuilding trust after a breach or mistake requires swift action, transparency, and accountability. Businesses should promptly address the issue, take responsibility for any errors or shortcomings, provide a sincere apology, and implement measures to prevent similar incidents. Rebuilding trust also involves consistently demonstrating reliability and delivering exceptional value to regain customer confidence.

Can trust be measured?

While trust is an intangible concept, there are ways to measure it indirectly. Businesses can use surveys, feedback mechanisms, customer reviews and testimonials, and customer loyalty metrics to gauge the level of trust their customers have in them. These measurements provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of trust-building efforts and help businesses identify areas for improvement.

Check out the webinar on demand!

This webinar was an hour well spent for the viewers — if you'd like to catch up (or you missed it), be sure to watch the on-demand version. Thank us later!

Nainika Sharma

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