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Instant credibility and maximum conversions … just by using something called ‘social proof’? Somebody must be pulling your leg.
And yet …
Remember how over the moon you were when you secured a reservation at that crazy-busy restaurant in the city? And how excited you were when you got tickets to the sold-out concert everyone was talking about?
It wasn’t just that the food was good, and the music was great, it was that you enjoyed an experience that made you feel closer and more connected with your community. You had shared something together. Besides, if everyone else was doing it … it was bound to be good.
Which is EXACTLY the mindset that experts believe social proof achieves.
But before we go any further …
It’s proof, from other humans, that you will enjoy or benefit from a product, service or experience.
It’s not a new concept. The idea of normative social influence, which is just a fancy way of saying that we like things that the people we like like … which is a whole lot of like, has been around since the 1950s. But realistically since woman founded fire (you know it was us; it had to be) we’ve been socially-compelled creatures.
We are psychologically driven to fit in. We want to be part of a community and that means doing things that the rest of our community does.
Like eating at that fancy restaurant. And going to that popular concert. And, hopefully, buying from your business. Speaking of which …
As a clever business owner, you’ve likely already created a clearly defined target market that you’re aiming to reach and influence.
This target market is, effectively, a community.
Your job as a business owner marketing and promoting their business is to collect social proof from members of this community.
Becauseeee (and here’s where it gets juicy) the more people from that community that use and like your business (and rave about you), the easier it will be for you to attract and convert other members.
It’s the social snowball effect, positioning your business as the crazy-busy/sold-out/so amazing thing that they’ve just gotta have.
Social proof also shows your audience that real people, just like them, have used, trusted and loved your offering. And if others have, then, hey … maybe they will too.
Ready to load up your website with social proof?
There are a ton of ways you can approach it, but here are five of my fave:
For every service of product you offer, give your customers a chance to rate and review you. You can share these reviews on your individual sales pages or showcase key ones on your home page.
This is longer, and often more in-depth feedback, from past customers and clients sharing their experience with you. Photos (where your customer is smiling) add to the testimonial’s potency too.
Has a past customer had amazing results from your product or service? Flaunt it, girl! Flesh out a story-like case study that showcases your customers’ results and inspires your target market to daydream about their feet in your customers’ shoes.
You don’t have to get Leo to say you’re the bee’s knees, but if you can get somebody with social clout (whether that be on social media or within your industry) to endorse your business, this will instantly make your offerings more trust-worthy and covetable.
Got a rather spectacular number of subscribers on your mailing list? Shout it from the rooftops! Saying something like ‘Join 255,000 of your peers’ has been shown to be way more persuasive than ‘Join our much-loved mailing list!’ Remember: the more people using something, the better it must be (at least in your customers’ minds).
When you’re done adding social proof to your site, consider keeping an eye on your web analytics to monitor conversions and spot opportunities for even greater improvements.
Oh, and need a hand making your social proof pretty? I can help!
Come check out my services, girl!