The Power of Social Proof: Building Trust in the 21st Century

  Social Proof

The Power of Social Proof: Building Trust in the 21st Century

It may have been in the year 2007, outside a subway station in Washington D.C. that we first fully understood the power of social proof.

Ask one of the finest violinists of the time to stand against a subway wall, casually dressed, and perform some of the worlds most challenging classical music. Then watch the reaction of passing morning communters.

They would notice, wouldn't they?

Apparently not. The experiment happened, organised by Gene Weingarten of The Washington Post and Joshua Bell (the world famous violinist). Almost no-one stopped and only a handful paid any attention at all.

So what does this teach us? Had he dressed differently, had they known it cost a minimum of $100 a ticket at his sold-out concert 3 days prior, had other people stopped who acknowledged this viruoso performace, how different it might have been.

It seems clear. Social proof would have led to many more stopped to witness something they otherwise would not have had the opportunity to see, or perhaps be unable to afford.

The experiment, although severel years before we understood the true power and importance of social proof for websites, made the point well.



We can look beyond this experiment and see the evidence for ourselves. Reports suggest that 91% of people read online testimonials and reviews on a regular basis. I am one of those. Are you? Significantly, 84% trust these as much as they would a recommendation from friends or family.

Now those are powerful numbers.

A surprised cat

And what if I told you that decision making and taking action, the thing we want our clients and customers to do, happens quickly for 68% after reading between one and six testimonials or reviews.

We have evidence of the impact of social proof. We know it works, and we see how powerful it has become. So how is your business using this to maximise its potential? 

To drill down into what that potential is will depend on your business type and industry. Though based what we know so far, people are influenced by what people say about you.

Let me ask you this. On your website today, right now, will visitors see glowing testimonials from your past and existing customers?

If not, then you are losingt a key opportunity. The chance to gain immediate trust from 84% of those visitors, or of 68% making a decision there and them. You surely want what every other business wants; that customers buy quickly and are eager to return for more.

People queuing

The social landscape nowadays has reviews and testimonials all over the place, from Google to Facebook, from TripAdvisor to Trustpilot. Your visitors can potentially find all this for themselves, if they feel inclined, to build trust in who you are.

Alternatively, you can do it for them. Bring the best of all your reviews and testimonials right into your website. Let your visitors be immediately impressed, without effort. For those more discerning customers, they can double-check the source. Does that sound like a lot of work for you? It is far less than you might think, but we will get to that in a minute.

For now, picture those visitors streaming into your website. After understanding who you are from key business details and a well-formed headline, the are presented with a selection of 5 star reviews of your product, service or support.

Remember, we only need one to six testimonials to make a difference. That is enough to begin the process of building trust. Once confidence is gained, decision making is a simpler process for that potential client or customer.

That is what we call a win.

People winning

Not every business will have enough testimonials to get the benefits. In that case, go to each previous and existing customer and ask for one. Would doing that bother you? From reports online, it seems for a number of business owners, it does.

If that sounds like you, let me help you there.. Use a tool that automates the testimonial request, makes it easy for the customer, and displays the best testimonials that meet your criteria.

Sounds simple? It is. Endorsal makes it simple — try it for yourself.

Make the difference between a good business website to highly effective one, where other people are telling your vistors how great you are.

Which one would you buy from?

Great testimonials reasonate because they show real people saying real things about your business.

That might just be the most powerful marketing tool we have at our disposal in 2020.

Collecting high-quality testimonials is important to every business.

But it's always been a long, painful game of back-and-forth.

Endorsal streamlines the whole process by fully automating it, saving your business time and money.

Increase conversions, build customer loyalty and strengthen your brand.

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