There are many strategies for lead generation with digital marketing: blog content extras, social media advertising, lead magnets, etc. One particular strategy that is extremely powerful to get more leads is social proof.
What is social proof?
Social proof is a psychological phenomenon where people assume the actions of others in an attempt to reflect correct behavior for a given situation.
In layman’s terms, people are more likely to buy something when they see others doing the same. Here are a few examples where you’ve probably seen social proof in action:
- When you go out to eat on a Friday or Saturday night, it’s likely that you’ll have to wait. Most restaurants tend to have a smaller lobby so that patrons have to wait outside, making it appear that this is a popular restaurant, and therefore a good place to eat.
- Similarly, if you go out to a nightclub, the most popular clubs always have a line out the door, regardless of whether the club is full. This makes others want to get in line to check the club out as well.
- Several years ago, Dropbox put out the Mailbox App and required new users to sign up to be put on a waiting list. This made people want to get in on the action because an app with a waiting list must be pretty awesome.
How can you use social proof to generate leads and increase the buzz about your business?
1. Customer testimonials
The most common forms of social proof are your business reviews and customer testimonials. Use these to your advantage by adding a testimonials section to your website or create branded graphics with testimonials to share on your social media profiles.
2. Influencer marketing
Using celebrity endorsements or getting well-known bloggers and social influencers to use and endorse your product is a great form of social proof. This can be an ad or offering of a free product to share with their followers.
3. Follower/social share count
Include your social media follower count or the number of social shares on your blog posts to increase the likelihood that others will share your posts. You can use plugins on your website that show these numbers automatically. Social Warfare is a great plugin for WordPress, and it adds a count to the social share buttons.
4. Mentions in the media
Has your business been written about on influential websites, magazines, or blogs? Create a separate page for all of your media mentions. Share links to the articles about your business so potential customers can read them and decide if they want to work with you.
5. Industry certifications, accreditations, or badges
If your business has certifications or accreditations from your industry, you should share these on your website. Some industries have required certifications, while others have badges that help your business stand out. Regardless if the certification is required or not, it’s a great idea to share your additional education, licensing and credentials with potential customers.
6. Number of customers
McDonald’s has the slogan “Billions and billions served” because it shows that they have a huge customer base. Share how many orders you’ve received, customers you’ve had, or clients you’ve worked with.
Social proof is a highly powerful method for getting new leads and new customers. Start implementing a few of these strategies to start bringing in more business.
Author: Mike Gingerich, President of web firm Digital Hill, Co-Founder of TabSite .
Digital and Social Media Marketer, Speaker, and Business Consultant. Part geek, part marketer, total digital junkie! Seeking to add value, make the complex simple, and leave a positive impact.
Follow me on twitter: @mike_gingerich.