How to Leverage From Social Proof to Grow Your Business
By Space Coast Daily // March 30, 2023
As the online landscape becomes saturated with new brands launching by the hour, the competition for consumer attention has never been higher.
Because of this, as a business owner, you must use every competitive advantage in your arsenal to position yourself as the more favorable and appealing choice. One way to accomplish this is by leveraging social proof.
Understanding social proof
‘Social proof’ is a term coined by Dr. Robert Cialdini, a renowned scientist and author of bestselling books, including Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.
Fundamentally, social proof describes our psychological tendency to change our behaviors or actions to match other peoples’ online and offline behaviors or what we consider socially acceptable behavior.
In marketing, social proof is a powerful tool that can inspire trust and convey brand value and authority, thus increasing conversions.
Types of social proof
From a marketing perspective, we have different types of social proof, including but not limited to testimonials—from customers and market experts—referrals, ratings and reviews, social media proof, and different types of industry certifications—think of things like ISO, Halal, etc.
As you can imagine, social proof can significantly influence various aspects of your business, and businesses that use it well often outpace the competition.
The advantages of using social proof
Social proof is advantageous because it helps build brand trust and increases conversions.
In fact, 76% of consumers “regularly” read online reviews when browsing for local businesses. 98% of consumers used the internet to find information about local businesses in 2022. 76% of people “always” or “regularly” read online reviews for local businesses.
In the modern world, thanks partly to the many varied options available to businesses, leveraging social proof for business growth is now easier than ever.
Let’s discuss a few key ways you can leverage this powerful marketing strategy to grow your business:
4 simple ways to grow your business by leveraging social proof
You can leverage social proof in the following simple but impactful ways:
1. Have customer reviews near your CTAs
Displaying customer reviews near your calls-to-action (CTAs) is a great way to leverage social proof.
Here is why:
In the modern business world, reviews are a powerful brand marketing tool that greatly influences purchasing decisions—so much so that a blog from Moz shows that reviews influence 67% of all purchase decisions.
You can create a dedicated “Reviews” section on your product pages or storefront and place your ‘best’ or ‘most informative’ reviews near your CTAs. A great review next to the “Add to Cart” button can make all the marketing difference for your conversion rate.
2. Use trust badges
The second way to leverage social proof is to showcase trust badges on your website to increase credibility.
Different industries have different trust badges, depending on what professional organizations you belong to and your conversion goals.
Please take advantage of every trust badge you can use and display them on your website or storefront because the trust and credibility they instill create a more confident consumer.
Displaying trust badges on your website will immediately make your visitors feel confident in your brand.
3. Publish video testimonials or product unboxings
Video testimonials and product unboxings are an underutilized, highly impactful social proof strategy.
When the video testimonials are from customers who genuinely love your brand and products, they can make a big difference in your marketing strategy because they show potential customers what to expect and what other people like about your brand products. The testimonials can be on your website and social media pages.
As a point of caution, many businesses publish ‘fake’ or paid testimonials that have the opposite effect on their brand and sales conversions. Thus, ensure your testimonials are genuine because online buyers love authenticity and will sense when you’ve ‘paid’ someone for a positive review.
4. Use social engagement
Engaging with your consumers and potential customers on social media is another key way to use social proof.
Here, you can interact with and engage your audience in the comment section or use your social media pages to offer timely and valuable feedback that helps grow your brand or business. You can use tools like SMM Panels to manage your social media pages.
Social engagement is an especially crucial way to reach out to B2B leads, which is why it’s steps one and two of Leadfeeder’s 20 strategies for lead generation and increased B2B sales.
Leveraging social proof is a powerful way to build brand trust with potential customers, thus increasing conversion rates. The more social proof you can have on your site, the easier it is to build trust and increase sales.
Consider adding social proof to your landing pages and homepage, sharing reviews on social media, and creating case studies.