Also known as informational social influence, social proof builds on the foundation of “herd mentality”. Simply put, social proof describes the way individuals are influenced when they see that others are doing something. Although humans tend to see themselves as independent thinkers, the principle of social proof explains why people are more inclined to “follow the pack” when they see other doing the same thing.
This same principle can be applied to marketing to get better results and win more customers. Businesses, brands, products and services are much more likely to gain customers when they are able to leverage the
Examples of Social Proof
Here are common types of social proof in marketing today.
In the era of e-commerce and social media, nothing speaks better to prospects like positive customer reviews about your product or service. First-time customers want to know they are not just paying for any other average product or service, hence, they look out for reviews and recommendations on review sites.
Positive online reviews can greatly influence your brand and can be used as an effective social proof in your marketing materials. If a major review site gives you a five-star rating, including it on your website or landing pages can show to new visitors that your brand is worth the hype and can be trusted.
Telling people that your product works is a good way to market, but it’s not always enough. Intending buyers want to be sure that others have used your product before and had a positive experience. This proves that your product or service is valuable and worth the investment. The health and fitness industry greatly leverages customer testimonials for social proof and to establish credibility. Likewise, the tech industry uses testimonials from customers who have used their software and achieved results as a means to market what they offer.
Celebrity and Influencer Endorsements
Celebrities and influencers with massive follower counts on social media are another method of social proof. Social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube and many others have local celebrities or regular people with lots of friends and thousands (maybe even millions of) followers. A word out from these huge accounts endorsing your brand is a great way to expand your reach.
Testimonials from Industry Experts
Customer opinions and celebrity endorsements are great, but positive testimonials from experts in your industry go a long way to assent credibility. Search out experts in your industry who are relevant to the product or service you are offering and ask if they will be willing to endorse your brand.
Depending on the product or service in question, experts to consider may include: fitness coaches, chiropractors, therapists, lawyers, doctors, teachers, mechanics, etc. On your landing pages, try to include the expert’s full name, photograph, title, company, and most importantly, specifically how your company, product or service helped them.
All of the aforementioned ways are means of leveraging social proof to promote your company or brand. Other means include: awards and recognitions, number of subscribers etc.