11 Unique Ways to Leverage Social Proof
You’ve collected glowing testimonials from your customers and shared them on social media – but now what? How can you use those positive reviews and social proof to get more leads and sales?
In this article, we’re sharing some of our favorite methods for leveraging social proof so you can use your reviews and testimonials to close real-world deals.
What Is Social Proof (and How to Get It)
Utilizing social proof is based on the general idea that people are influenced by the actions and opinions of others. Your typical consumer uses social proof to guide their behavior. And it’s founded on the principle that proof (not promises) closes deals.
In other words, people want to know that others love your business before they’re willing to try your services or buy your products. It’s scary having to be the first person to take a risk on an unproven business. It’s why 63% of people are more likely to purchase from a business with reviews.
Some examples of social proof include:
- Customer Reviews
- Customer Testimonials
- Press Features
- Expert Endorsements
- Influencer Posts
- UGC (User-Generated Content)
Getting social proof is often as simple as asking your customers for reviews. Other times, it’s more complicated. You may have to pay an influencer, apply for an award, seek out press, or aggregate your sales data. (For a more in-depth look at how to create your own, check out our article on generating social proof.)
However, getting the social proof is just the first step to making it count. You have to know what to do with it once you have it to really leverage social proof for all its worth (aka help you gain more credibility and get more sales).
11 Ways to Make Your Social Proof Really Count
There are many ways to get people to trust your brand, but nothing works nearly as well as social proof. So, here are eleven terrific ways to leverage social proof to level up your results.
1. Display Reviews on Your Home and Product Pages
Once you get reviews from your customers, be sure to display them on your website’s home, products, and services pages. To make your reviews super impactful, consider including the customer’s picture or a “verified purchase” badge beneath their review.
2. Create Compelling Case Studies
One great way to turn a winning testimonial into a powerhouse marketing punch is to expand it into a case study. A case study is a detailed report of a customer’s experience with your brand.
Often, they talk about what problems your customer was facing when they came to you and what your company did to solve them. It usually includes statistics of some kind and quotes from key players. In many ways, a case study is like a testimonial on steroids.
3. Sprinkle It in Every Corner of Your E-Commerce Store
If you have an e-commerce store, you should find as many key places to incorporate social proof as possible. For example:
- Incorporate “people also bought” notifications.
- Highlight bestsellers on your product page.
- Show the number of people who have bought a product.
- Swap “we recommend” with “# users recommend.”
- Add star-rated testimonials to products.
- Display stock levels.
- And more
4. Add Like Counts
We’re in a world ruled by social media, where a “like” represents an endorsement. So, people intrinsically understand that a “like” is a form of social proof. As a result, you should consider adding like buttons and like counts to several key spots on your website, including on individual products and blogs.
5. Use Social Impact Verbiage
There are words and phrases that immediately imply social proof. Using these social impact words is a great way to subtly hint at your social proof without beating people over the head with it. Some examples of social impact phrases include:
- #1 Seller
- Fastest Growing
- Best Rated
- Most Loved
- Popular Choice
- Going Fast
Try adding social impact phrases to products or services and watch how people respond.
6. Mention the Size of Your Customer Base
You have to be thoughtful about where and how you do this one, but if you have an impressive customer base, find ways to mention it.
For example, on your bio page, you could include a section that says something like, “There’s a reason 15K customers choose us!” You can also display a banner on your homepage that shows the number of customers you have “15K customers served.”
7. Display a Social Share Count of Blogs
We already talked about like counts, but share counts can be really valuable social proof, too. If your blogs or blog graphics get a lot of shares, consider adding a social share count to the bottom of your blogs. It’s one way to show that other people value your information and business.
8. Use Social Proof in Your Ads
Testimonials, star ratings, and social impact words are terrific things to add to your next ad campaign. Whether you’re running a PPC campaign or a full-blown video advertising campaign, find some ways to incorporate and leverage your existing social proof to increase your results.
9. Add It to Your Emails
Adding social proof is one way to increase your email conversion rates. Whether you add social impact phrases, star ratings, or testimonials to your newsletters, finding places to tell your email subscribers that other people love you and your product will result in higher clicks, conversions, and replies.
10. Leverage It for Press
Getting press is one way to get social proof, but social proof is also one way to get press. When you have raving testimonials or compelling customer stories, journalists are much more likely to take an interest in you and your brand. So, gather your favorite testimonials and churn them into a newsworthy piece. Then, submit your idea to journalists in your niche.
11. Showcase Customer Logos
If you’re a B2B business that works with reputable or noteworthy brands, consider displaying your customer logos on your website – with their permission, of course. Customer logos can be a powerful way to help other companies know they can trust your brand.
Start Leveraging Social Proof Today
Ultimately, there are countless ways to leverage social proof in your business. Whether you’re displaying testimonials on your homepage or using social impact words on your product pages, there’s no shortage of methods for letting people know you’re credible.
So, get creative, and use the 11 methods above to start using social proof in your business today.