As people start rebuilding and returning to normalcy, many are choosing to start their businesses. Roughly 305 million startups start operations annually. This translates to 835,000 new enterprises daily, and these numbers aren’t going to wane anytime soon. Statistics may change from one region to another, but one thing is clear: competition will be tough.
The good thing is that businesses have different ways to leverage the human psyche to market their products and services. As consumers live in a highly social era, it’s the most opportune time to leverage the power of social proofing.
What Is Social Proof, and Why Does It Matter?
Also known as informational social influence, social proof is a concept in psychology, sociology, and marketing. It refers to the fact that people are more likely to do something if they have seen or heard others doing it. It is a powerful marketing tool that encourages customers to make purchases and take action because they have seen that other people have done the same. This happens because of an assumption that others’ actions are correct and plausible.
For example, when several people have given a restaurant a 5-star rating, it indicates that it is reputable and trustworthy. But it’s easier said and done, especially when it comes to marketing–people need more convincing because there’s monetary exchange.
Nevertheless, the concept relies on the fact that people rely on others’ actions to determine their own.
Types of Social Proof
Here are some examples of social proof and how they become effective tools for marketing.
Testimonials and Customer Reviews
Testimonials and customer reviews are powerful forms of social proof that can help a business gain more customers and increase sales. Testimonials can show potential customers that the business is trustworthy and provides quality services. They can also provide insight into how a company operates and what services they offer.
Data shows that 70% of consumers will read one to six reviews to influence their buying decision. Those with good reviews get good results. Research shows that 72% of buyers will take action after reading a positive review and are more likely to spend 31% more on shops with “excellent” reviews.
Case studies can be an effective form of social proof when done correctly. Actual customer experience gives potential customers a better understanding of how the product or service works in a real-world application.
A good case study should provide specific details about the customer’s experience. It should include details, such as product use, the results, and how it benefited the customer. An in-depth analysis of the results is necessary to give customers a better understanding of the evidence and data for the product or service.
Case studies can also be effective by highlighting customer successes. By including quotes or reviews from customers that have had a positive experience, potential customers can see first-hand how the product or service has had a positive impact. This social proof can help build trust and credibility in the company and the product or service.
Social Media Mentions
Social media mentions can become an effective form of social proof by showcasing how people talk about your brand. While not explicitly confirmed, brand mentions are also great for search engine optimization (SEO).
This can be done by monitoring what people say about you on social media platforms and responding accordingly.
Trust icons are used to build trust with customers. They’re placed on e-commerce products, social media accounts, and websites, as well as in videos and other forms of content.
Trust icons are designed to show that a product or service is safe and secure for the user to purchase. For example, you can build customer trust by adding images of logos of trusted companies to your website or showing that influencers or experts recommend your product or service.
Trust icons also help to create a sense of community by providing customers with a visual representation of what other people think about your products or services. It creates a sense of professionalism and credibility, which helps to solidify customer trust further.
Incorporating statistical numbers into your messaging is an effective way to demonstrate to your audience that facts and data support your claims. By showing how many people have found success with a product or service, you can boost the credibility of your message and encourage others to take the same action.
For example, if you’re pitching a product to potential customers, you might add statistics such as how many purchases have been made in the past year or how many customers have left positive reviews.
How to Showcase Your Social Proof
Convinced that social proof is an effective marketing tool? Here are some ways of implementing it.
Feature Customer Reviews on Product Pages
Make it easy for customers to leave a review on your product page, building more credibility in the eyes of other potential buyers. By allowing customers to leave reviews on the product pages, potential customers can get an idea of what prior customers experienced with the items.
Additionally, reviews can help the business showcase its best features, as customers will likely post about the aspects they enjoyed the most.
Reviews can also help you identify areas that need improvement, a critical aspect of customer service. A negative review can hurt the business. So your customer service people should be alert to responding to these reviews promptly.
Post Content on the Homepage
Feature your social proof on the homepage, where it would be easily accessible by potential clients. You can curate the case studies and relevant statistical numbers you should highlight on your homepage.
You can also showcase positive reviews and customer feedback and feature user-generated content to amplify your social proof further.
Strengthen with Visual Proof
Your social proof is more credible when it features real users relatable to potential customers. However, you must present user content professionally. Get these user posts and edit the photos so it looks more presentable. For example, you can use a background remover to allow the product to come into focus, along with the customer review about the product.
You were able to showcase your product, and you’re brandishing your social proof.
Social proof can take the form of reviews, testimonials, endorsements, and even online influencers. By showing that others have taken the desired action, marketers can encourage more people to do the same.
- Social proof is a powerful tool for boosting trust.
- Customer reviews are an essential part of building trust with your customers.
- How you present your social proof is critical in the customer’s buying decision.