Developing a trust framework is key to making your practice stand out from the competition. After you have begun to develop trust among your audience, the next three steps involve enticing people with your content and establishing yourself as a go-to source and someone with the ability to influence others.

If people are intrigued by your brand, they will want to understand what you do and how you do it, says Kirk Lowe, founder of TactiBrand in Toronto.

Lowe shares three ways to “pull people in” to experience your expertise:

1. Engage
Your goal is to get people to know more about you. You accomplish this step by contributing original and pertinent content to your own website as well as participating in social-media discussions.

Your website is not a static placeholder for your contact information and your investment philosophy. You should be regularly sharing ideas with your target market and providing them resources so they can learn more about their own financial situations.

These materials can include white papers, blog posts, calculators and case studies. If you’re looking to provide something different, why not add book reviews to your range of content?

You can alternate between books that focus on financial issues and those that target more personal topics that fit your client base. So, one review might examine Gordon Pape’s latest work on RRSPs, while your next review could focus on the best kid-friendly vacations to take in Canada.

This range of content shows clients and prospects that you are up to date with what is going on in your industry, and that you understand what members of your audience want to know about for their daily lives.

2. Capture
Your content should be risk-free, says Lowe. In other words, don’t ask for a lot of personal details in order for your connections to download your white papers or case studies. However, you should at least have some information to facilitate following up.

Keep it simple and ask for an email address, suggests Lowe. Someone is more likely to provide a working email address than a real name or phone number.

3. Influence
Demonstrating your skills and experience means updating your website and social-media profiles regularly. When clients and prospects know they can depend on you for intelligent and relevant information, you are earning the trust that can lead to developing new or stronger relationships.

Be patient! Even if you are holding regular discussions with a group on social media or some visitors have downloaded a few of your white papers, it may not yet be time to add those individuals to your client roster.

“The content needs to be nurtured,” Lowe says. “Eventually, you’re going to have the opportunity to see something grow. It takes a lot of time.”

This is the second instalment in a three-part series on developing a trust framework.

Next: Using that trust to develop relationships.