Six Keys To Influence Almost Anyone [Part 4 SOCIAL PROOF]

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Thanks for reading PROTips the resource dedicated to making you a better salesperson, a better marketer, and done in a way that always puts a smile on your face!

Let’s recap here. For the past three editions we have been focusing on the key principles of influence.

Understand these principles and how to use them and you are going to a more effective advisor. It’s just that simple.

Up to now we’ve covered Reciprocity, Commitment and Consistency and Liking. 

Today, I’m going to be focusing on one of the most extensively used principles in our day-to-day world. I’m talking about social proof.

Principle #4 / Social Proof

Spend two minutes on Amazon, Netflix, or virtually any website and you’ll see social proof in action. See below. 

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Look at all this! This screenshot is loaded with examples of social proof in action.

It’s in so many places today that it’s important to understand WHY social proof is used. 

And it comes down to this: uncertainty. 

When we are not certain about what to do – we look to others for social cues. Wanna see something fun check out The Dancing Guy video – see below. 

If you have never seen, it’s worth the three minutes of viewing. 

A lone person begins dancing. The crowd around him watches. He is for sure an outlier. It’s uncomfortable watching him. Then he is then joined by a second and for a time the two dance. One beat. Another beat. Then another joins the dance. Before you know it there’s a movement. 

It happens that fast!

In just seconds, a crowd of strangers go from observers to participants. Why? Because they are picking up on a social cue. They see others dancing and in their heads they move from not knowing what to do to jumping in and dancing. 

That my friends is social proof in action.

But there’s another factor at play here. And that’s what Cialdini calls the principle of Similarity. 

If you look at the people in the crowd, you’ll see they are similar in a lot of ways. Young, at an event. Their clothes all look about the same.

This is a tribe — of sorts. A tribe brought together by music. And as Cialdini points out: “We are more inclined to follow the lead of a similar individual than a dissimilar one.” 

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A Proven Strategy

That gives you a better psychological understanding as to why social proof works and why it is so effective.

Here’s another reason: it delivers results. 

Check out some stats from the website Invesp: 

  • 90% of customers read online reviews before visiting a business.
  • 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. 
  • Customers are likely to spend 31% more on a business with “excellent” reviews.
  • 72% say a positive review makes them trust a local business more. 
  • An increase in a Yelp review can lead to a 5-9% increase in business revenue.
  • The fact that customer reviews are available for most items is one reason why Amazon converts four times more browsers than an average eCommerce website. 

Clearly, social proof works. So, let me provide some examples you can use.

Here’s how you can use social proof…

  • Get a testimonial on your homepage above the fold. This is prime real estate a testimonial can help hook your prospect. 
  • Use testimonials throughout your site. Yep, the homepage is great but consider placing testimonials on key pages as well. That could even include your contact form. 
  • Use a testimonial in the signature of your email.
  • Highlight awards you have won. 
  • Share milestones throughout your site and marketing materials. This could include: 
  • Number of customers served
  • Years in business
  • Number of people on your email list 
  • Are you working with other big brands? If you are place their logos on your site. 
  • Test working with micro-influencers. 
  • Capture video reviews from customers. 
  • Set up a process for getting a Google review from each client you service. 

If you already have a plan to collect feedback, reviews, and testimonials…keep it going. If you don’t – use this list to help jumpstart the process. 

That’s it for this week. I’ll be back soon to talk about Authority.

Thanks for the read, and if you enjoyed, please share with other sellers.

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