You’re going out for dinner tonight; you’ve shortlisted the possible options to a total of three restaurants. How do you pick the ONE? In a world with excessive information at our fingertips, it can pose a complex environment for businesses to compete.
Social proof, also known as ‘informational social influence’, is centred around the idea that people copy the actions of others in an attempt to emulate their behaviour in social situations, with a desire to ‘be liked’ or accepted by society.
So how, as marketers, can we capitalise on this? How can you make sure your business is the ONE?
Why is Social Proof important?
Understanding your customers’ buying habits is vital. As shoppers, we are constantly on the lookout for information: reviews, recommendations, and unique uses of the product, to name a few. Online retailers work hard to get you to review their products; it’s a way of building trust and surety before purchasing. By providing all information in one place, the consumer is more likely to shorten their buying process.
1. 91% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
2. The industries in which consumers are most likely to read reviews: 1) Restaurants, 2) Hotels, 3) Medical, 4) Automotive, 5) Clothing stores
3. Only 48% of consumers would consider using a business with fewer than 4 stars
4. Displaying reviews can increase conversion rates by 270%.
5. 68% of consumers are willing to pay up to 15% more for the same product or service if assured they’ll have a better experience.
Strategies for your business
1. Case studies: If you’re in need of inspiration, check out redPepper’s case studies here.
2. Testimonials and reviews: The average consumer will read 10 online reviews before making a purchase decision. Don’t cut corners when it comes to feedback – it could cost you your next sale.
3. Encourage user-generated content: Create a unique hashtag associated with your business or a new project. Encouraging social media engagement of all forms can do a world of good. Forbes stated that 81% of consumers’ purchasing choices are influenced by their friends’ posts on social media. Creating a sense of FOMO (fear of missing out) not only persuades your customers, they NEED the product/service, but they need it now!
4. Influencer marketing: This tactic involves compensating influencers for spreading brand awareness, for example, exposing your products to a wider audience. This is a strategy to note, no matter your business size, with influencer marketing considered the fastest-growing consumer- acquisition channel.
5. Expert’s stamp of approval: We’re all familiar with the term, ‘you are what you eat’, we all love to post a good-looking brunch or an extravagant cocktail. An industry thought leader or influencer approving of your product will set a standard for their audience. This could be a blog, social media post or just a photographed user!
So now you’re aware of social proof, pay attention to the choices you make and why you make them. Succeeding as a marketer involves understanding the process your customers go through and adapting to their journey.
For more advice on improving your marketing strategy, get in touch with us today at firstname.lastname@example.org.