Most consumers are unaware that they are exposed to social proof influencing. I remember being a kid and the commercial came on that stated, “Four out of five dentists surveyed recommend sugarless gums for their patients who chew gum.” Trident used this testimonial to influence consumers to purchase Trident gum. I know my mother bought Trident and quoted that commercial frequently when I tried to get her to purchase Bazooka gum.
What is social proof and how does it affect our decision making process?
According to the website, The Psychology Notes HQ, the Social Proof Theory is defined as:
”The Social Proof Theory, popularized by psychologist Robert Cialdini, maintains that a person who does not know what the proper behavior for a certain situation is, will look to other people to imitate what they are doing and to provide guidance for his actions.
In other words, social proof is one way for us to discern what is correct through reference to what other people think is correct, especially during times of crises when we don’t have time to think and have to make a decision right away. Since this theory emphasizes the importance of social influence on our own behavior, it is also called the Informational Social Influence Theory.”
How does social proof influence consumer behavior?
Consumers want to feel good about their buying decisions. We look to fellow consumers to get a feel for a product or service prior to taking action ourselves. Most people admit to looking at reviews on Amazon prior to purchasing, not necessarily knowing if the reviews are true.
Therefore, if your company has a following that is actively “discussing” your business on social media and encouraging your company’s products, it may increase your consumer engagement. Social engagement can establish a feeling of trust and loyalty about your brand.
People speak louder than brand slogans.
How can you utilize social proof in your marketing efforts?
We feel strongly that truth in advertising, branding, and content will drive loyalty and increase revenue. Why not capitalize on social proof to grow your business?
- Add customer testimonials to your website and Google Business page. Ask your clients to speak on your behalf. Create a testimonial page to share anecdotes and stories of their business success using your products or services.
- Try out a guest blogger. Allow them to talk about you, your business, and their business experiences with you. It can be very powerful.
- Gather endorsements or co-brand with other local businesses. For example, a customer loyal to a health food store sees your herbal teas for sale. They may assume that your products are of high value because their favorite health food store carries your teas.
- Share milestone information. Add a banner to your home page telling the world the world you just received your 1000th Google Review. Perhaps share the number of likes you obtained on multiple social media platforms. Statistics of customer engagement and satisfaction can be very powerful.
- Round up the ambassadors! Ask a happy client to participate in a video to be posted on your website. They will be more than happy to help you out!
Be who you are as a company and make the most of your reputation.
Social proof is front and center in the minds of website developers and content marketers. People buy from who they know and who they like. In the absence of firsthand knowledge, they look to the community for opinion.
Let the team at Put Another Way help you Find Your Voice. We will combine community experience along with customer endorsements and opinions to create content that is sure to drive customer conversion.