In today’s digital world information is available to us by the swipe of a finger. With that being said, the information you are putting out there digitally for consumers should build your credibility, and not tear it down. This is where social proof comes into play. Social proof is everywhere.
What is social proof?
Social proof is the influence that is created when the information you are putting out there influences others in a positive or negative way or sways their opinion on a topic. Why is this important when it comes to marketing?
Nearly 70% of consumers in the United States report that they read the review of others before making a decision to purchase an item, or choose whom to do business with. 63% of those who read reviews base their decisions off the reviews that others have left.
Negative social proof is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when it comes to marketing. Using what is considered to be “negative social proof” in a call-to-action can be detrimental. That means your call-to-action should not include saying things such as “Not enough people are doing their share, act now and you will help.” Instead take the approach of showing how they compare to others. Avoid that bullying behavior that no one likes. Tell your readers how many people are working with you and why. Focus on positive social proof. Back up your social proof with testimonials from happy clients. Testimonials are very persuasive and work best in picture format when it comes to increasing trust among readers.
To examine your social proof start by looking at the comments that are out there on your blog or the likes on your social media posts, retweets of your content, or the repining of your pins on Pinterest. These are strong indicators that the content you are publishing is strengthening your social proof.
Build your social proof by offering readers free information. A free report relative to your industry can do wonders in building social proof. This solidifies you as an expert in your industry. Place social proof that is positive prominently on your landing pages.
Whatever you do, don’t fake your social proof with fake reviews and unreal video testimonials. This can ruin your business.
When it comes to building social proof, be truthful, be real, be yourself. Influence others with personal stories.