What is social proof and how can you use it for your business

social media

Social proof is a business phenomenon that can help boost your company’s success. But what exactly is it?

Social media marketing has rapidly become one of the key factors contributing to business success, but the world of social media is also unpredictable. For those out there who aren’t experts in the various platforms, it can feel like there’s no guarantee whether a post is going to receive any recognition at all.

That’s where social proof comes in. Social proof is the science behind our online content marketing. In short, it’s the psychological phenomenon of judging how good something is based on what others around us have to say about it. We trust things used by experts because we assume they know more than us. We trust things used by celebrities because we want to be like them. We trust things with good reviews because those writing them have experienced the product, unlike us.

The 6 kinds of social proof:

 

Celebrity

Celebrity social proof simply consists of a celebrity endorsing your business or product on their social media, such as on Instagram. This makes your business appear more in-demand.

User

User social proof is when people who are already clients of your business share their experiences with others, such as through social media posts or via online reviews.

Expert

Expert social proof is when an expert in the same field as your business recommends your business on social media.

Crowd wisdom

This form of social proof commonly links directly to the number of followers you have, as crowd social proof is when a large group of people seem to be supporting your business, making it appear reputable.

Friend wisdom

Friend social proof is when you see your friend associate themselves with or support a business, for example by liking or following them on social media.

Certification

Certification social proof comes, unsurprisingly, from being certified. This means that a social media platform like Twitter or Facebook gives your business’s profile a little blue checkmark to say you’re trustworthy.

How can we use social proof to increase our business success?

 

Show appreciation for being mentioned

By retweeting or sharing posts which mention your business, you’re not only showing gratitude to the person who mentioned you but also letting other people know that users of your business are sharing their experiences. This will help boost both user social proof and crowd social proof.

You can even create a hashtag for followers to use in their posts and then share their posts on your account.

Share milestones

Sharing milestones on social media such as your business being X amount of years old or having X amount of followers can help improve your social proof. Having been around for a while makes your business seem more trustworthy, and reaching a certain amount of followers shows other users that people are getting behind your business. So be sure to share!

Collaborate with experts for events

Having experts take over your social media for a short period of time can reinforce what your business does and tap into the influence of that expert, creating a positive association. Try inviting an expert to share an educational post on your account, or even take over a Snapchat or Instagram story.

Display testimonials on your website

Received some positive tweets about your business? Put them on your website! Crowd social proof, friend social proof and user social proof all tell us that consumers value the opinions of real people who have experienced a business, so put your positive shout-outs on your site as proof of just how good your business is.

If the complex world of online content marketing feels out of your comfort zone, there’s always the option to outsource the task to experts in the field. If you want to bring in the expertise to make your social profiles sing, why not get in touch today.