It doesn’t matter how unique each of us is; we’re a social species easily influenced by our peers and public figures. Social proof and other psychological concepts that influence decision-making can better understand ourselves, our customers and become better marketers.
What is Social Proof ?
The concept of social proof states that people look to others to help them make decisions and influence their behavior.
Social proof is a concept developed by psychologist Robert Cialdini. He has extensively studied how it impacts behavior. According to his findings, people are consistently more likely to like things they liked by their peers. Certain songs, brands, bands, and movies are trendy because of this. Individuals who identify with each other are more likely to be influenced by social proof. Noah Goldstein and Cialdini tested the power of social proof with a message designed to encourage hotel guests to reuse their towels. While the idea of helping the environment inspired many guests, many more guests were encouraged when they learned that most guests reuse their towels.
What does this have to do with e-commerce, website design, or digital marketing? Since people are influenced by social proof, brands must demonstrate their popularity among respected groups and their target demographic.
Social Proof: Why is it important?
In other words, we tend to copy one another, even when it comes to purchasing decisions. You’re demonstrating social proof in the form of thousands of 5-star reviews, thousands of Instagram photos of customers loving your brand, and millions of followers.
Social proof can significantly impact behavior, and there are plenty of statistics that demonstrate its importance for brand success.
According to Podium, consumers rely on reviews to make decisions about what to purchase 82% of the time. Social proof across different channels is crucial for building your brand and developing loyalty and conversions from your customers. User-generated content includes word-of-mouth recommendations, star ratings and reviews, YouTube videos, and more.
How Can I Boost My Brand with Social Proof?
You will learn about different types of social proof below, as well as how to facilitate them.
Social Proof for Customers
The endorsement of your customers is one of the most valuable types of social proof, and all brands should make the most of it.
According to Spiegel Research Centre, customers are 270% more likely to purchase a product with five reviews than a product with zero reviews. Review your products if you sell them. You can give customers the option to leave a review by sending them an automated review request once they have received their products.
You may want to make a testimonial page for your site if you sell services to showcase longer reviews of your work. Look for reviews on Yelp, Google, Facebook, and any other platforms that may be relevant.
Engage your customers through social media, and encourage them to interact with your brand.
Showcase user-generated content, including Instagram photos of natural, happy customers, on your website, in your email campaigns, and wherever else you can.
A person we know and trust provides us with the most robust social proof. We may be motivated to interest in something we otherwise wouldn’t if we saw that a friend liked a post or page. Whenever you create Facebook ads, you can choose to target people with friends who like your page.
Industry Experts Endorsements
You might partner with a prestigious dentist to promote your toothpaste brand if you sell it. A dietician may have endorsed a local rowing team practices on your equipment or your supplements.
Expert endorsements can be maximized by:
Include your expert in your social media posts, let them share your posts, or let them write about your brand on their account. Include an image from them, along with a few short, inspiring quotes.
Email and direct marketing campaigns that use your expert's image and quotes.
On your website, you should mention your affiliation with an expert. You might consider including their answers on your FAQ page or information on your affiliation elsewhere on the site.
Make the Most of Certifications and Awards
Suppose you don’t have an industry expert working with you to market your brand. In that case, you can still promote your expertise by sharing information about your certifications, awards and other industry recognition.
You may hold a certification from an industry body; certified products are often seen as unquestionably proof of your skill and quality. It makes them valuable to include in About Us content or on Awards pages, and it doesn’t hurt to promote them on social media.
Perhaps you have won multiple local business awards over the years or have an excellent Better Business Bureau rating. Since the more your customers identify with those who gave you recognition, the better, winning local awards makes you known in your community, even if competition is minimal.
Endorsements by celebrities
You’ll find framed photos of all their celebrity guests at your local Portillo’s restaurant while enjoying a famous Chicago hotdog. In addition to their virtual walls of fame, online customers can also discover how many friends they have.
The endorsement of a celebrity can be not only a big-budget TV ad but also a celebrity visit or a simple retweet, comment, or Instagram post from a star or local hero who you know loves your brand.
Social Proof Statistical
Tens of thousands of people following you on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or other social media platforms can serve as social proof for your brand. How can we increase these numbers?
Post engaging images and captions to create unique social content.
In addition to popular hashtags, you should also use hashtags that are unique to your brand.
By making your fans your stars on social, you can turn them into customers. Taking advantage of user-generated content will benefit all parties.
Answer questions and comments on your social media posts.
Pay for ads to reach users who have similar interests to your existing customers on social media.
Social Proof Can benefit your Brands
No matter what industry you’re in or what product or service you sell, social proof is powerful. You can utilize your customer feedback, star ratings, certificates, endorsements and more. Share the content that your customers tag you in on social media to show your appreciation.