Show Some Social Proof

It’s no secret that consumers are researching companies, products, and services before buying.  Several years ago, just having a website was a enough to gain some degree of credibility for your business.  Today, it seems like everyone and their mother has a website and, as a result, consumers are doing much more research before they decide to even interact with you, let alone buy from you.

From a sales perspective, it’s no longer enough for you to talk about how great your services are on your website, prospective clients and customers want to see some social proof.

According to Wikipedia,

 “Social proof, also known as informational social influence, is the psychological phenomenon where people assume the actions of others in an attempt to reflect correct behavior for a given situation.”


They want to see that others have interacted with you and had a pleasant experience.  They also want to see that others who were or are in a similar situation have been helped by your content, services, or products. In other words, they need proof that you provide the value that you claim.

Here are 5 ways you can show some social proof and heat up your sales:

1) Use testimonials.  I’ve come to the realization that most service-based entrepreneurs are under-utilizing testimonials.  Add them strategically to your sales pages, but don’t stop there. Sprinkle testimonials throughout your website.  My last site had at least one testimonial on each of my main pages.  Share them on social media sites, as well.  Just be sure to get permission before using testimonials.  Don’t be shy about asking for testimonials, either.  People may love your work but rarely do they think about giving a testimonial on their own–you have to ask.

2) Engage with your audience on social media.  Ignite a conversation with your followers–invite them to share or comment on your work.    Then listen and respond to their feedback. Research by InboxQ showed that 64% of customers are more likely to buy from companies that answer their questions on twitter. Whenever I host a teleseminar or webinar, I invite participants to share their takeaways on my Facebook page or on Twitter.  It’s a great way to build buzz around what you’re doing, build a relationship with your audience, and see what information they really value.

3) Let your audience know what you’re up to.  I’m not talking about sharing what you’re having for lunch.  I’m talking about relevant activities that your followers actually care about.  If you have a food-related business, then sharing what you’re having for lunch makes sense.  If you’re a photographer, share pics from your latest photo shoot.  If you’re a consultant or coach, you might talk about a conference your going to.  Doing this will give your followers a glimpse of your expertise and a taste of the work that you do without constantly slapping them with “buy my stuff” pitches.

4) Share stories of how you helped others.  One short 60-second story about how you already helped someone  else will persuade a prospective client more than 1 hour of you telling them about your services.  Share stories or case studies any time you are selling, whether you are giving a presentation or having a sales conversation.

5) Ask for referrals.  Nothing adds social proof like a referral from a trusted friend, colleague, or resource.  Be proactive about asking for referrals, don’t just wait for them to drop into your lap.  If you don’t have one already, create a referral system for friends, colleagues, and clients.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on delivering social proof. Please share your brilliant comments below!

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About Tiffany deSilva

Tiffany deSilva is the founder, CEO, and visionary leader of BrightFire Women’s Business Network, LLC.

BrightFire Women’s Business Network is the premiere sales training and coaching resource for service-based women entrepreneurs who want to increase their sales, serve more people, and change more lives.

Feedback & Comments:

  1. I honestly think this is what is driving social media for business owners….getting to know others, having positive comments from others – it’s social proof no small biz owner could otherwise afford to buy.

  2. Wonderful tips Tiffany! I plan to implement some of these right away. This has been a good memory jogger for me as far as testimonials and case studies. I also agree with what Sue said about the importance of building relationships.

  3. I like video testimonials. When people come right out of my seminar and it’s fresh in their mind what they’ve learned, it reenforces to the viewer that they could get the same results.

  4. Two things stood out for me – the twitter stats and sharing success stories during a sales conversation – thanks!

  5. I like the idea of asking for and using testimonials. I need to do more of that. Thanks for the reminder.

  6. Yes, yes, yes – all the way through your list!
    Video testimonials might be the best to have!

  7. Good advice. i think testimonials are important and if you have delivered as promised, it should be no problem getting them from your clients.

  8. Heidi Alexandra Pollard says:

    I like these tips – I also like to be a resource and share articles and research relevant to my audience

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