How To Earn The Trust Of Your Holistic Nutrition Clients?
Have you recently graduated with a registered holistic nutritionist diploma and are just starting your journey to being a practicing registered holistic nutritionist?
Are you nervous about finding and maintaining regular clients?
It’s reasonable to be worried about these things.
However, the key to finding and keeping loyal clients is actually quite simple.
Your relationship with your holistic nutritionist clients must be built on trust.
One of the biggest hurdles your registered holistic nutrition clients have faced in the past will often be a medical system they don’t trust.
If a client trusts you, you will find they’re more open to working with you, and will recommend you to their friends and family.
But how do you build trust in a professional relationship?
What should you do, and when?
Keep reading to find out.
1. Above All, Be Honest
Honesty is key.
Even if the honest truth is difficult to admit or say out loud, it’s important that you tell your registered holistic nutrition clients up front.
For example, if they ask you a question and you don’t know the answer, it might be uncomfortable to admit to a client that you don’t know.
No registered holistic nutritionist knows everything, which is part of why registered holistic nutritionist continuing education courses are so important.
But saying that you don’t know doesn’t have to be the end of the conversation.
You should say that you don’t know but you should also reassure the client that you have a plan for finding the answer.
Let them know that you will research their question, you will also discuss this with a professor at your previous training school, or that you will speak with a professional about the specific topic.
By admitting you don’t know the answer, you’re actually helping the client to solve their problem and gain trust in you, which is why they came to you in the first place.
Honesty goes a long way towards building trust.
2. Listen To Your Clients
Of all the soft skills to be an effective registered holistic nutritionist, the most important is empathy.
And one of the best ways to show empathy to your clients is to really listen to them.
It’s all too common to hear horror stories of clients telling their healthcare providers about their concerns, only for the healthcare provider to dismiss them even though the client was right all along.
The client trusts you with their sensitive personal health problems, and you need to demonstrate that they have made the correct choice in trusting you.
By hearing the client out, you’re saying that you believe their experiences and that you’re there to support them in achieving their health goals.
3. …But Don’t Just Do What They Tell You
Listening to the client isn’t the same as doing everything that they say.
While listening is a vital part of your job as a holistic nutritionist, you’re also the expert in the room.
If a client comes to you with an ask that isn’t in their best interests or that doesn’t match their health goals in the way that they think it does, don’t be afraid to recommend something else.
Provide a clear explanation as to why you are offering a different care plan, and ask them if they have any questions to be sure they understand.
When you demonstrate your expertise, you can show that you listened to them and that you have their best interests in mind.
4. Connect On An Authentic & Emotional Level
Human beings crave authenticity, and they’re great at spotting it.
When you’re practicing registered holistic nutrition, make sure you see the client as a whole person and not just as a problem to be solved.
You can make connections through non-work topics.
If the client asks questions about you, don’t be afraid to answer.
Of course, keep the conversation lighthearted and don’t reveal anything too sensitive.
But if you can connect on a human level, it will help you build trust with your holistic nutrition clients.
It may seem simple, but you need to talk to your client.
Keep them updated: if you need to examine them or touch them, explain to them what you’re doing as you go along because it might surprise them or make them uncomfortable if they don’t know what’s happening in the situation.
If you are talking about a topic that requires follow-up at a later date, let them know this is an important part of the process for change and improvement.
Book the appointment before they leave.
6. Gather Case Studies, Testimonials, And Reviews
Reviews are a great way to safeguard your reputation and promote your services as a holistic nutritionist, but they are also important in building trust with your clients from the very start.
Potential clients may want to shop around and do research before they decide to contact a specific registered holistic nutrition practice, and reading reviews is a big part of that process.
Current research shows that approximately 92% of customers read online reviews and 88% incorporate those reviews in their decision-making process.
Many potential clients look up their options on social media to find out more information, so it’s important to have proof of your services from other people you’ve helped.
If a new client comes to you already having read reviews, that shows that they trust your services based on what other people have said about you.
7. Have A Professional Online Presence
In addition to having testimonials online, your behaviour online must also be professional.
Your official online channels represent your business as a holistic nutritionist, so never put anything on social media that you would not be happy for a client (or potential client) to see.
Make sure that everything you put out uses proper grammar and punctuation, because these contribute to an overall impression of your business.
And be sure to have a well-designed website people can access and easily understand.
8. Show Respect
Trust isn’t possible without respect.
If you are respectful of your clients, that attitude goes a long way toward building trust.
This extends to all forms of interaction with your clients, whether it’s respecting their time and making sure that your appointments start and finish at the expected time, or whether it’s listening to their perspective.
Contact The Edison Institute Of Nutrition Today
If you found this article helpful and want to learn more about practicing holistic nutrition as a professional, the Edison Institute of Nutrition offers a mentorship program and an accelerated program for professionals.
We can help you grow your skills and set you up for success as a holistic nutritionist.