Social proof can be the difference as to why your company succeeds or fails. Discover what social proof is and why it is important.
Imagine trying to buy a course online. You come across two different courses. One has over 500 reviews and the second has only two.
Which one would you buy?
The first one, obviously.
This is a powerful psychological trigger called social proof.
In this article, we will talk about what social proof is, and why it’s important that you include it in all your marketing materials.
Table of Contents
What is social proof?
In a marketing sense, social proof is proof that other customers have bought and valued a company’s goods or services.
Customer testimonials, product reviews, customer lists, and quantifiable data (“Over 10,000 downloads!”) are a few examples of social proof on the web.
Each of these strategies promotes trust, communicates value, and increases conversions.
For instance, when unsure of how to behave in a social setting, you look to those around you for guidance.
It makes sense for someone attending a gala for the first time to scan the room to make sure they fit in and behave as everyone would expect them to.
In marketing, the concept of social proof refers to how consumers research products before buying them by reading reviews, recommendations, and accounts of how others have used them.
This is why online retailers make such an effort to get customers to leave product reviews; it’s a form of social proof that significantly boosts sales.
Why is social proof important?
Why is it necessary to use social proof in your marketing now that you know what it is? What makes it an important part of your business strategy?
- 83% of customers tell their friends and family to use a brand they follow on social media.
- 91% of consumers research products online before buying.
- Before making any kind of purchase, 82% of Americans check with their friends and family for recommendations.
Simply put, social proof increases sales for your company.
The ability to communicate trust is another advantage of social proof.
Because giving a credit card number to an unfamiliar company online is a significant barrier for customers to overcome.
Trust is one of the key elements in converting customers online.
Building trust in your company’s legitimacy and dependability can be achieved by demonstrating to prospective clients that you have many happy customers through testimonials and user reviews.
Finally, authority can be communicated through the use of social proof in online marketing.
An expert’s endorsement, for instance, might be more persuasive to a customer than a hundred reviews from regular people.
Another method of displaying social proof and authority is by displaying the logos of well-known clients.
The reasoning behind this is that a service is probably efficient if many of the biggest companies in the world are using it.
Social proof works by leveraging our innate desire to imitate others, fostering credibility and trust, and removing obstacles to online shopping.
How to use social proof in your marketing
You can use social proof in a variety of ways in your marketing to show off your happy customers to prospective clients.
One of the best marketing strategies is knowing that customers have previously expressed satisfaction with your company’s goods or services.
1. Case studies
Writing a case study about a satisfied customer’s interaction with your company is a great way to showcase happy clients.
Choose one or more clients with whom you have achieved great success, and ask them if they would be open to taking part in a case study and answering some initial questions.
These are usually in-depth analyses of how you and the customer collaborated successfully, so making sure they are actively involved is essential.
2. Testimonials and reviews
Your business might receive testimonials and reviews online, but have you ever thought about sharing those on social media?
Reviews are the quintessential example of social proof.
And including ratings and reviews on your website as well as sharing on social media lets your audience know what others think.
3. Existing customers and clients
Sharing publicly the fact that you work with well-known brands is another excellent way to attract customers to your good or service.
Obviously, you must be doing something right if major brands like Google support your company.
4. Awards and accolades
Has your company received honors or been listed among the best in your sector? Display that stuff!
It’s a fantastic way to show customers that your company is renowned for excellence.
5. User-generated content
When you post user-generated content on your own social media pages, people will know you have satisfied customers.
The best platform for this is Instagram.
Simply create a unique hashtag for your brand, add it to your bio, and invite users to be featured.
6. Influencer marketing
Influencer marketing shares characteristics with user-generated content. This strategy pays influencers for showcasing your brand in their images.
Because they enjoy seeing the brands of goods and services that content producers wear, use, and adore, people follow influencers.
Influencer marketing is a fantastic example of social proof because it can help your brand reach a larger audience.
7. Customer base
The last social proof example we’ll look at is showing how many clients, items, or users you’ve served.
Given that you’ve worked with so many people, it is clear that your company is experienced and knowledgeable in what it does.
More examples of social proof
There are many different types of social proof that can be used to boost conversion rates, depending on the product or service. Several instances include:
- Customer pictures and reviews
- Company names and logos, especially those of well-known and respected brands
- Case studies of clients
- Customer reviews or comments
- Reviews on third-party websites like Yelp or Google, as well as certifications from reputable organizations
- Number of users who follow you on social media
- Sharing buttons that display like and share counts
- Download and transaction totals
- Counting the number of clients
- Influencers’ praise and endorsements from celebrities
- Expert social proof and testimonials from professionals in the field
These are only a few of the various types of social proofs that are available.
Depending on your industry, you’ll display different types of social proof.
A B2B company might show a list of enterprise customers or testimonials, whereas eCommerce sites might show a number of purchases or customer reviews.
A travel agency might display the number of vacations booked, while media companies can display readership or subscriber figures.
Social proof can be any impressive-looking, quantifiable metrics, such as the number of downloads, email subscribers, or even social network shares.
The more convincing the proof of your appeal, the better.
Conclusion on using social proof to boost conversion
Social proof is a fantastic element to test across your site and on your landing pages in order to increase conversions because it is such a potent psychological factor.
As part of the value proposition for your product or service, take into account including elements of social proof on your important landing pages.
Incorporate social proof into your calls to action by using phrases like “Join our community of 10,000+ marketers.”
A/B testing is a powerful method for evaluating various social proof placements.
A/B testing compares two distinct versions of the same page against one another, and the version of the page with the statistically significant difference in conversion rate is identified using statistical data.