We see social proof all around us. From celebrity endorsements on the high end to ratings and reviews on the more common programs. Social proof can come in many forms, but it comes down to people believing in you because others believe it you. Take advantage of this in digital marketing and you’ll see increased customer acquisition and retention.
Shoppers are looking to reduce the risk inherent with their buying decisions. This is one of the reason repeat purchaser are the most efficient for business; getting over the initial risk is mostly done. But new customers are looking to the experience and opinions of others to mitigate the risk. When you view it from this perspective, social proof helps you show prospects that they will get what they purchase.
A few of the best ways to provide social proof to new (and current) customers include:
- Ratings and testimonials. Show them the experience of others who have purchased from you. One of the keys to this approach is recency of the reviews. Old review are less credible, so you must actively cultivate reviews from your satisfied customers.
- Awards and independent media mentions show buyers that you have earned the trust of others who have compared your product or service to your competitors. Highlighting these in your advertising and website will gain confidence from prospects.
- Show examples and case studies of the work you’ve done. With a variety of examples you are likely to show things similar to what prospects are looking for, thus reducing the perceived risk of working with you.
- Certifications. Often we underplay to role of our certifications in marketing. Share these liberally. Certifications show that you take your work seriously and that the quality of your work is recognized by others.
Don’t be shy when it comes to social proof. This is your opportunity to demonstrate the quality of your work, product or service and reduce the barriers to new customer acquisition. Link to reviews, create testimonial pages, and keep an updated “news” page to show off your awards, certifications and body of work.