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Social Proof: A Key Element of Influence and Persuasion

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A Key Element of Influence and Persuasion

There are plenty of techniques you can try to boost your business, and social proof is by far one of the best. One of the popular six principles of Dr. Robert Cialdini, social proof is a powerful tool that can really boost sales and help you attract new customers.

Read on to learn more about what it is, how it works, and how you can utilize it in your business.

What Is Social Proof?

Also commonly referred to as social influence, social proof relates to people trusting the opinions and experiences of others. They follow what others are saying and doing, especially when faced with the unknown.

This term was created by Robert Cialdini, mentioned above, who states that we view a behavior as correct if we see other people doing it. Many studies have been carried out to support the powerful effect social influence can have in terms of business. So, how exactly does social proof work in business terms?

How Does It Work?

There are a lot of great examples of how social proof works in business. The most common way is through consumer reviews.

When consumers are searching for a product or service, they are more likely to look for reviews before making a purchase. They look to see what experiences others have had when buying from the company they are looking at. They trust these reviews and ultimately base their own shopping decisions on them.

You’ll also see social proof at work in physical stores and restaurants. If you walk past a restaurant and it’s packed with diners, you’ll automatically think it must be a great place to eat. This increases the chances you’ll want to try it out yourself.

These are just a couple of examples of how social influence works in business. If others are raving about your company, you’ll find that a lot more new customers are attracted to you.

How Can You Utilize it in Business?

Knowing the benefits social proof can deliver to your business, the question is how you can use it to your advantage.

Firstly, you’ll want to focus on any positive reviews you’ve received. Take the most positive reviews and highlight them anywhere you can. That means adding them to your website’s home page, your social media channels, and in your email responses. This will show consumers that you can be trusted and that other people recommend you.

You can also use blogging as a way to generate more social proof. It sets you up as an authority figure in the industry while also helping you to attract a large following. The more people who follow your blog, the more trusted you’ll be.

Be sure to add social share buttons to your content to enhance the effect of social influence.

There are many elements that are important in business, and social proof is just one of them. The more people who like and follow your business online, the more customers you will ultimately attract.

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