Social Proofs
Social Proof

Social Proof: The Secret Weapon You're Not Using (But Should Be)

Play episode

Who hasn't walked into a place packed with people just because it looked good on Instagram, right?  Social proof is seriously powerful.

Also, studies show that 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

And it's not just us everyday folks - businesses and bloggers are also using this psychological phenomenon for their benefit. They know that social proof builds trust and makes people more likely to buy into what they sell.

This blog will talk about the different types of social proof and how you can use them to win over your audience. So, keep reading!

What Is Social Proof & Why Does It  Matter?

The term "social proof," coined by Robert Cialdini in his landmark book "Influence: Science and Practice," refers to the simple psychological concept that if others are doing something, it must be the right thing to do.

Whether we are shopping online or browsing for a restaurant, this principle is important. Let us now dive into the psychology behind social proofs

The Psychology Behind Social Proof (Social Proof Psychology)

There are three key psychological aspects of social proof:

Herding Mentality

We are social beings and love being around others. So, when we see a big group doing something, we sort of join in without really thinking too much. It's like our brains take a shortcut, assuming all those people must know something we don't.

Imagine you're all set to launch your amazing course online, but gotta find the right platform first. You head out there to see what options exist, and whoa, everyone seems to be using this one particular platform.

Reviews look good too. So, you think to yourself, "Hey, if it works for all these creators, it must be doing something right!"  Makes sense, right? In this case, following the crowd (in a smart way, of course!) can be a pretty good strategy.

So, next time you see a crowd doing something, remember it's okay to take a moment and think for yourself before you follow along.

Bandwagon Effect

The bandwagon effect is a powerful force behind social proof. It explains why we tend to join the crowd, especially when something gains popularity. We also fear missing out (FOMO) on something exciting or beneficial.

The bandwagon effect is all around us. From social media fads to trendy clothing styles, it shapes our decisions. Marketers often use this by highlighting high sales figures or positive reviews.

While the bandwagon effect can be useful, it's important to be aware of its influence. Popularity doesn't guarantee something is the right choice for you.

Trust Signals

Positive reviews, testimonials, and expert or celebrity endorsements are like gold stars for our brains. They act as shortcuts, reducing the risk of making a bad decision.

Seeing others vouch for a product makes it seem more trustworthy, and since we're social creatures, positive experiences from others validate our own choices.

These trust signals feel more objective than marketing messages, making them powerful tools for businesses to build trust and drive sales.

Benefits of Social Proof

Social proof is a valuable tool for businesses and individuals alike. Here's how it can be beneficial:

Increased Trust

Social proof builds trust with potential customers. Positive reviews and endorsements act as social validation, assuring them that they're making a wise decision.

Enhanced Credibility

Social proof positions a brand or individual as credible and trustworthy. Customer testimonials and media mentions add legitimacy and social currency.

Boosted Conversions

By showcasing the popularity of a product or service, social proof can significantly increase conversions. Customers are more likely to buy from a brand that others have already chosen.

Greater Engagement

You can create social proof to spark engagement. User-generated content, positive reviews, and social media mentions create a buzz and encourage people to interact with a brand or product.

Data and Case Studies: The Power in Numbers

The effectiveness of social proof in marketing is backed by data and real-world examples:

  1. A study by Spiegel Research Group found that 92% of online shoppers read online reviews before making a purchase. Positive reviews significantly influence buying decisions.
  2. TripAdvisor reports that 72% of travelers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. User-generated content on travel platforms heavily sways travel decisions.
  3. Social proof platform Trustpilot found that companies with excellent customer reviews generate 9.3% more revenue per customer. Positive online reviews translate directly to increased sales.

Different Types & Examples of Social Proof

Alright, we talked about why social proof is important. Now, let's dive into the different types of social proof examples you can use to win over customers.

Customer Testimonials and Reviews (written, video)

Positive feedback from past customers,  especially in the form of written reviews or video testimonials,  holds significant weight.

When potential customers see real people’s experiences, they automatically feel confident about their own decision.

For example: Picking a restaurant is easy - you just hit up Google reviews and see what everyone's saying about the burgers.

But for something bigger, like a fancy new software or service for your business, you gotta dig a little deeper. That's where sites like Trustpilot and G2 come in.

Customer Testimonials and Reviews

Here, customers can leave in-depth reviews about their experience.  This is super helpful for you because you can get a clearer picture of what it's really like to use that fancy new software before you swipe your credit card.

User-generated Content (social media mentions, photos)

When customers share their experiences with a brand on social media,  it creates a sense of authenticity and community.

User-generated content,  like photos or posts mentioning the brand,  shows real people using and enjoying the product or service.

User-generated Content

Case Studies and Success Stories

Detailed case studies showcasing how a company helped another business achieve success can be highly persuasive.

These stories provide concrete examples of the product or service's impact and can resonate with potential customers facing similar challenges.

Example: In a YouTube series, The Creator Show, Freshlearn dives into the journeys of inspiring creators. This is where the stories and journeys of creators are shared which can really help other creators make their decisions as well

Case Studies and Success Stories

Social Media Engagement (likes, shares, comments)

High social media engagement  - likes, shares, and comments -  indicates a brand's popularity and positive reception.

This online buzz can pique the interest of potential customers who see others actively interacting with the brand.

Influencer Marketing and Celebrity Social Proof

Partnering with influencers who have a loyal following can be a powerful marketing strategy.  When an influencer vouches for a product or service, it can significantly impact their audience's purchase decisions.

Awards and Recognition

Industry awards and recognitions demonstrate a brand's expertise and achievements.  Showcasing these accolades can build trust and position the brand as a leader in its field.

Statistics and Data (e.g., number of subscribers, downloads)

Sharing quantifiable data like subscriber numbers, downloads, or active users can imply popularity and success.  This data provides potential customers with a sense of the brand's reach and influence.

How to Implement Social Proof Strategies In Your Marketing?

Find the right kind of brag points

When you're trying to win someone over, you gotta talk their language, right? That's what social proof in marketing is all about. Instead of a generic "we're the best" spiel, focus on the achievements that resonate with your ideal customer.

Reviews? Influencer love? Awards? Pick what matters most to your audience.

For young tech enthusiasts, positive shout-outs from tech influencers would be a big deal. Aiming at high-powered professionals?  Highlighting those fancy awards your company won might impress them.

Note: The key is to align your brag points with the values, interests, and aspirations of your audience.

This not only validates your brand's worth but also creates a compelling narrative that resonates with your target demographic, driving engagement, loyalty, and ultimately, conversion.

Collect glowing reviews

Positive reviews from happy customers make you look amazing to potential new ones.

To build a collection of these testimonials, chat with your customers after they buy something or use your service.  Ask them for their feedback –  an email, a quick phone call, or even a question at checkout all work well.

Basically, let them know you value their opinion and would love to hear what they think (in public, if they're willing).

A little thank you discount or reward can also be a nice touch to show your appreciation for their time.

Finally, make leaving a review super easy.  Offer clear instructions and give them different options for where to leave it.

Maybe it's your website, social media, or a review site they already use. The more ways they can leave feedback, the more likely they are to do it.

Put those brag points to work

Reviews and testimonials are similar to having your friends tell everyone how great your product or service is.

These positive quotes from real people go on your website, social media, and anywhere else potential customers might see them. They're like social proof, saying "Hey, this stuff is good, trust me!"

Plus, happy customers sharing their experiences on social media make your pages more interesting. It's like a virtual hangout where your happy customers can chat about how much they love what you do!

Get the conversation going

Ditch the fancy talk! Building trust with customers is like making friends. When customers love your stuff and post about it online (tagging you!), it's like a super-believable endorsement. It's real people saying your product rocks, way better than any ad.

Share those shout-outs! They're like bragging rights from your coolest friends. They convince new people to join the fun and show them why your product is awesome. This way, you're not just selling, you're building a crew of happy fans who believe in you.

Team up with the cool kids

Imagine the coolest person you follow online talking about a product you might like. That's the power of influencer marketing!

Basically, you find social media stars whose fans match your target audience. These influencers can review your product, mention it in their social media posts, or even just give it a shout-out.

Since their followers trust them, they will likely listen and consider your brand.

This isn't just about getting your name out there.

People trust influencers, so their positive review makes your product seem cool and trustworthy too. Plus, their fans might actually buy your stuff because of the influencer's recommendation!

Don't be shy about your achievements

You know how your grandma loves bragging about your good grades? It's kind of the same for businesses!

Awards, positive articles, and cool mentions are like bragging rights that show you're the real deal. They're like having famous people say you're awesome.

Think about it like choosing a movie. With a million options, how do you decide? If one has tons of awards, you might trust it's actually good, right?

Sharing your achievements does the same - it builds trust and makes you shine brighter than the competition.

How To Effortlessly Collect and Display Testimonials on Your Website With Freshlearn?

FreshLearn takes the hassle out of collecting testimonials for your website. No more intimidation, no more coding – just a few clicks and you're displaying glowing reviews that build trust with potential customers.


Here's how FreshLearn makes testimonial collection a breeze:

  • Request Testimonials in Seconds: Generate an easy-to-share link that lets satisfied customers submit testimonials in under a minute.
  • Frictionless Landing Page Block: Ditch clunky forms! FreshLearn offers a user-friendly "Get Testimonial" block you can add to your website landing page.
  • Customize Everything: Make the testimonial section your own. Add your logo, a compelling headline, and even a call to action button. Don't forget a thank you message for those who take the time to review you!
Customer Testimonials
  • Centralized Dashboard: FreshLearn keeps all your testimonials organized in one place. Easily scroll through submissions and decide which ones to showcase on your website.
  • Publish with Precision: You have complete control over what visitors see. Simply choose the testimonials you want to display by marking them "Publish".
Customer Reviews
  • Wall of Love: Feeling the appreciation? FreshLearn allows you to create a dedicated page showcasing all your positive testimonials – a virtual "wall of love" to impress potential customers.
FreshLearn Testimonials
  • Manual or Automatic: You can choose to manually add specific testimonials to your landing page, ensuring everything is typo-free, or you can opt for the "Show All Testimonials" option and let FreshLearn handle the display.

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, I’d just like to add up that social proof isn't a luxury - it's a necessity in today’s digital world.

It's the trust-building currency that separates good ideas from thriving businesses and forgotten faces from influential figures.

By strategically following the social proof strategies, you can easily cut through the noise and convert unsure customers into loyal fans.

Businesses, too, can utilize this power to build a strong personal brand, attracting opportunities and building connections.

As we navigate an ever-more-connected world, social proof isn't something to consider, it's the key to unlocking your full potential.  Embrace it, and watch your impact soar.

Also, Sign Up to Freshlearn and start collecting those Testimonials!

Online course creation platform

You might also like

  1. 7 Unique Ways To Monetize Your Social Media Following
  2. How blogging can be a great way to build a personal brand
  3. How to build a personal brand as a creator
  4. Live Vs Pre-Recorded Webinars: Which Is Best For Creators?

Hosted by

Rahul Mehta

Rahul Mehta

Empowering creators worldwide to create,market and sell "anything they know" :)