The 3 Pillars For Success – Trust, Engagement and Sales

The 3 pillars for success

These are my observations and what I am working with.

Building Trust
Trust Between All People is Essential for Success

1. Trust

In my opinion, this is the biggest rule for online success.

How do you get people to trust you?

Being genuine and telling your own story. If you try to do what the ‘big boys' are doing you are destined to fail.  They are at a level you cannot comprehend.

It takes some time to build trust.   Consistency is your friend here.  If you keep producing content and you are not trying to sell at every opportunity then you stand a good chance of people taking notice of you.

How you do this?

Have you read Dale Carnegie's book: How to Win Friends & Influence People?

Dale Carnegie - How to Win Friends and Influence People

This is worth reading before going any further.

By treating all of your readers as your best friend.  Talk to them, not at them.  Most people online are quite savvy and can see through ‘fake' relationship building.  Especially if you are trying to sell them something all the time.

They are not going to buy from you because they can go directly to Amazon or eBay, they don't need you for this.  But what they will buy is your story if it's genuine.

We, as humans, are always interested in what other people are doing.  It's what most TV shows are about.  The proliferation of TV ‘reality shows' are a testament to this.

We have a fascination in seeing how other people live their lives and want to know more.  Trust me we all lead fascinating lives it's just that as a writer it's hard to convey our story or we think our lives are boring.

Nobody's life is boring.  There will be places you have been (your home town for instance) that no one else has been to.  Shows you have seen.  Scenery that very few have seen.  Famous sites you have visited.  One of the most interesting stories you can tell is times you have had with friends and the situations you have been stuck in.

If you look really hard you will find something that someone else will want to hear.  Did I tell you about the time when…lol !

Engaging with your audience
Keeping you informed of what success is all about.

2. Engagement

You may be on many social media outlets and from what I have seen most interactions there are shares.  Sharing quotes, news, anecdotes, pictures etc..but that is not engagement.

Engagement means having a conversation with someone online.  The more you get involved with people's lives they will become interested in yours.

It's better to have 100 followers that you actively engage with then having 1,000's of followers who never give you the time of day.  They won't engage with you if you don't engage with them.

It takes work to engage with people, but people are interesting and if you are in online marketing you need to understand this.  This is the lifeblood of your business, people.

The reason you don't need more is because if you truly engage with people they will talk about you and more people will become involved with you and your business.

Don't engage in areas where everyone is doing the same thing – online marketing.  Find communities that would enjoy your conversations and take an interest in you.

There are so many communities online that you could engage in.

How about writing content for Medium, Quora or Inbound to name a few?

If you are not sure how to write good content, I can show you.

Selling Products, your lifeblood
Selling should be a win-win situation. Both parties should benefit

3. Sales

Once you have gained the trust of your audience and once you have enough organic traffic then you can sell something.

The things that you sell you have to have faith in and you have researched the products thoroughly.  Nobody wants a bad buying decision and they shouldn't get one from you.

Always tell the truth because in this day and age bad news travels fast.  So don't make claims that you can't back up.  Most people will know if you are trying to pull the wool over their eyes, so don't do it.

With all the tools available to online marketers they know how much traffic comes to your site, they can find out how you rank with Google, they will know how long you have been in business.

If you are good enough you will have customers coming to you and they will want you to sell to them because you have gained their trust.

Never abuse their trust, do not take them for granted.  If they ask questions, answer them promptly (as least within 24 hours because we live all over the planet we are in different time zones so probably can't get back to our customers within hours) and succinctly,

Once people engage with you it's a sure sign you are doing the right thing.

Selling is all about solving people's problems and hopefully, you are the one who does that, made their life easier.

Help with online marketing
We all need support and a mentor.


With these three things you should be able to make a career with online marketing but it takes time.  If you are only here for the short haul you will not make it.  Think of the businesses you trust and how long it took for you to trust them.

I would love to know what your experiences are with online marketing or if you are not doing it, why not?

If you have any questions or doubts please let me know in the comments.  Thanks very much if you have read this far and I wish you all the best.  I hope you fulfil all your dreams.


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30 thoughts on “The 3 Pillars For Success – Trust, Engagement and Sales

  1. Hey Michael,
    I love this post of yours, it’s my dream to build a career in Online Marketing and it’s taking me a lot of my time though and I noticed that I’m lacking in engagement.

    I have been putting effort into my website but from my results, I still only have 3-5 Facebook likes and none from Google plus so I think that there may be something wrong that I may be missing out on. You mentioned that I could write content for Quora or Medium, how do I do that exactly?

    1. Thanks Riaz,

      With Quora or Medium you can sign up with them and write interesting posts and put a link in.

      It does take a lot of work to fully engage with people. You will need to make sure you hear (virtually speaking) what they are saying in their posts and engage fully.

      If you can write a comprehensive review of a site in your niche and they have a lot of traffic you may get lucky and they could put a link in to your site.

      I hope this has helped you a little bit more with your journey here.


  2. You are right, you have to have trust, engagement and sales to be successful. It does seem to take a lot of time to be successful at all three. I am still working on that for sure. I do think in order to get these three pillars, it will take some work and effort and a lot of dedication! Great post and wonderful website!

    1. it does take time but in the end you want to be earning from your online business for a long time. Thanks for the compliment.



  3. I definitely agree that sales are an important part of online success. While there are people abusing the trust of their audience, there is another extreme of blog owners who are afraid of making sales. This happens when I visit sites, I enjoyed reading the information but found no links that could direct me to a purchase page.

    1. That is so common, although when it’s a new site they be building up traffic before they put on affiliate links. Thanks for the heads up.


  4. Hi Michael,

    I agree with you that trust is very important and I am of the opinion that to gain the trust of visitors is the key to success in online business. In your post, I have also read that you can give some advice on how to write good content and I would be happy if you could give me any suggestions for improving this aspect.



  5. You have the main pillars of success not only online but offline too. Providing valuable content is the first aspect but communicating it your way – being authentic – that’s core. Not trying to sell is a very important step because people have so much information available – they can sense when you are trying to trick them. Engagement is king for sure, but what I think is very important as well is patience – this is the key to any success.

    1. Patience is the only way to be truly successful in any area of life otherwise we would just give up. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment on my post.


  6. Trust is definitely something I look for when engaging online. We all can recognize a site that doesn’t really know what they’re talking about, but if someone really enjoys what they are doing, it will shine through because you will see their extra effort and insights scattered throughout which makes you trust them and more willing to listen to their suggestions.

    1. You are right, Jen, it does show when someone enjoys what they are doing and you can see they are in it not just for the money but the enjoyment of solving other people’s problems.


  7. Good day, Michael. Thank you for the information on your page, how to create a successful home business. I am working online in my own office space I have set up for myself in the corner of my living room. I do not have a study room, so this is a corner where I can do my own thing without being disturbed.This is where I will be most of the time after my normal day job. You are absolutely right in your advice to set it up an office space. One thing you mentioned about dressing up, made me think, as I usually change into casual clothes after work, then I start my online business work. Although it is a part-time concept at this stage, I would want to expand it into a full-time home business in the near future, so the idea of dressing professionally makes sense after reading your notes. Never thought about it that way. The journey to success involves many adaptations and applying everything you learn as you continue on the journey. Your information is very helpful, and I will bookmark your website for future reference.

    Cheers, Jacob

    1. Thanks, Jacob, I appreciate your comment and your commitment to your business. I think with a home-based business it’s too easy not to take it seriously and then wonder why it’s not working.

      I wish you all the best,


  8. Good Morning Michael

    The 3 Pillars For Success – Trust, Engagement and Sales is great advice for living and business. Not just online business but any business. Too often businesses forget about Trust and they just throw information at consumers assuming we will not question the facts. Once trust is lost it rarely if ever is regained. Too often engagement is inauthentic because the pursuit of the sale overwhelms the interaction. I had the cable guy in a retail store stop me and say “hey would you like too try blah, blah”. I shared my story of the last time I did business with his brand and his response was nothing close to an apology, he was trying to close the deal before I could theoretically get in the door. Sales, Sales, Sales if I can get the first two right, the sale is a given. After reading The 3 Pillars For Success – it will be hard not to keep your words in mind as I pursue my business.

    1. Thanks, Ralph. That is a story typical of a salesperson not listening to their customer and losing the sale. Listening is an art not often practised because people’s minds are filled with their daily lives.


  9. Hey man great site and great advice, especially when it comes to affiliate marketing. For sure people need to be able to trust the person on the other side of the site before they are going to be even interested in taking that next purchase step. To do that you are right, writing good content that people like is a great way to go and build trust.

  10. Great point, Michael, not only for an online business, but for any business. After 35 years in brick-and-mortar retail and service, establishing trust is the first thing when they come in the door, and it should be the first thing that can be established on your landing page. People buy from people they trust. Online, it should be just as you describe – establish trust, pursue genuine engagement, ask for the sale. Thanks for a well and pleasantly detailed site, and best wishes for your success!

    1. Thank you, Bobby. I really appreciate a comment such as yours which obviously comes from your own experience. We all want to be able to trust the people we are dealing with and if they supply what we want and service our needs it’s also what makes us a loyal customer.


  11. I love your article on what it takes to create an online business! and where will you be in 5 years… infographics are a very effective way to reach people and get information across. the video with the pin blob is very entertaining! Did you make it yourself?? I also love the health tip articles you agregated! I’ll be signing up to your inbox newsletter 🙂

    1. I am happy that you have been able to read a few of my posts, thanks. Thanks for signing up to my newsletter. Yes I did do that video, lol!


  12. Great article, great advice! I also am trying to build a website and have problems with getting engagement. I guess that would be mostly due to the fact that I rarely use social media. After reading this it’s obvious I need to step up my game when I comes to engaging my audience. Keep up the good work.

  13. Great post, and excellent book recommendation. Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence people is one of the few books I can honestly say changed my life. It alone helps with the three pillars that you mention in this post.

    I agree that trust is essential, and, at least in my opinion, the hardest to actually show. Being genuine and not-sketchy, especially when you’re selling something, is not easy. You have to find your own voice that comes across well. It comes naturally to a lot of people (salespeople especially), but most of us have to work on it.

    Great post and I look forward to reading more!

  14. Thank you for your advice! I agree that Trust, Engagement, and Sales are 3 Pillars for Success, especially in online marketing. If you are missing even one of these then you won’t find success online.

    I appreciate you making it clear that online marketing takes time. It takes time to build trust. It takes time to engage with people and have them engage with you. And it takes time to make sales.

    I also really liked what you have to say about engagement. Being actively engaging online means having a conversation and really being interested in someone else’s life, not just clicking “like” on social media.

    Thank you for your post!

    1. It’s too easy to think that trust is an overnight thing but as we all know everything takes time and commitment. Thanks, Weston.


  15. Hello,

    When starting out your first online business, how much time should be spent working on it daily? and for how long till you should be seeing results?

    What social media platform typically sees the most results? Is it better to focus solely on the best platform, rather than dividing up your time and spending it on the weaker platforms?

    Awesome post!

    1. It’s all about learning the tricks of the trade. Starting out is a huge learning curve depending on your experience. I would allow one year to get smart and one year to growing an income. If this is to be your income source to replace your current employment this is no time at all.

      Minimum time per week should be around 15 hours but keep in mind that you don’t want to burn yourself out either.

      With social media you need to be engaged with your intended audience. It doesn’t work if all you do is promote yourself, promote other people and they will become your allies to help you further your business.

      Good luck, Kevin and thanks!


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