As a startup, how do you get paying clients when people are sceptical of your ability to deliver? The answer lies in your social proof.
She has the passion, the expertise and the experience to deliver on her promises. She has been in business for quite a while but then, she’s not making a dime out of her passion. She has the knowledge but she’s broke. She narrated how prospects have been giving her the sentence that marks the end of transactions- “I will get back to you.” She’s frustrated and wanted to back out.
It’s not like you don’t know what you do or you can’t bring in the results but then, people look at you with a side eye. People don’t feel assured of getting results from you. People do not want to be the scapegoat. No one ever wants to be used as a test run.
Have you wondered why it is easier to go from 1,000 to 10,000 than it is to go from 0-1000? Have you wondered why some products keep making enormous sales while some make little or no sales at all? Have you wondered why people go for products or services based on recommendations by others?
It is all down to the phenomenal power that lies in Social proof!
Social proof is the influence that the actions and attributes of the people around us (either in real life or online) have on our own behaviour. The idea behind it is – If people are getting results from it then, I can also get the results.
Social proof is a public evidence of people interacting with you and your brand. It’s a collection of evidence that shows the public that people have gotten results from you before.
People are skeptical by nature and seeing that others have had good experience with you before will turn the table in your favour.
So, how do you get the social proof?
SHOWCASE YOUR CERTIFICATION
Have you seen websites, especially those in the health and legal niche display their certificate on their websites?
Showcasing your certificates in your area of expertise is quick-fire ways to kick-start your social proof. People are at ease transacting with a certified professional and if you have any relatable certificates, now is the time to put them to use.
You can embed them on your about me page, sidebar or homepage just like Remi Owadokun does with her Total Makeover Program website.
You may even consider including it in your bio across your social media channels.
GET EXPERT ENDORSEMENT
To get people to trust you well enough to get them to engage your services and products, getting social proof from experts in your niche is pivotal. People trust these experts, they have the credibility and giving you an endorsement will skyrocket the confidence that people have in you.
Getting experts to be part of your social proof isn’t as tough as you think it is, you only have to be strategic about it.
People are busy and for you to get their attention, you may offer to help them anyhow that you can. The idea is that just send them the help instead of requesting their permission before you help them.
You may also buy their products or engage their services, with that, you join the inner circle and getting a social proof from them becomes easier.
You may also engage their content and build a relationship with them over time before requesting that they offer you social proof and endorsement.
Building relationship with them is key as experts would not engage in or associate with anything that brings their brand into disrepute.
GET CUSTOMER’S TESTIMONIALS
Why do you think Amazon keeps increasing sales and profit? Amazon is a pro at having customers give a product review.
It is fascinating according to Nielson to know that 70% of online customers look at a product review prior to purchase. It is also worthy of note that people trust product reviews 12 times more than the product description.
Have you been stacking up customer’s testimonials?
People are more at ease to make financial decisions in your favour when they see that others have good experience with you.
As a service based entrepreneur, you can use survey monkey or Google Doc to stack up your testimonials.
SHOWCASE YOUR SOCIAL COUNTS
If you have great engagement on your blog, flaunting it would not do your brand any damage. People love the numbers and people feel at ease joining the numbers. Numbers and stats are great social proof for your business.
Flaunt any statistics in your favour that position you as the expert. It may be the numbers of people who have engaged you, numbers of products sold, your subscriber’s list and any fact that helps you.
Here, you need to be careful of displaying anti-social proof. Some numbers turn people off, they show your prospect that people do not trust or engage your brand well enough.
If you have great content, with little or no share at all, it is better you take those away from public view.
You may add up your number of subscribers alongside social media share to stack up a staggering number of your social proof.
Another social proof strategy to get yourself out there to build your know like and trust factor are through webinars. Collaborate with reputable professionals in your niche and get the ball rolling.
Run a free webinar on your subject matter, offer immense value and you may request your participants to write an objective assessment on their social media channels about you. I started out my journey with this strategy and it’s great and relatively cheap to implement.
WORK FOR FREE
Don’t raise your eyebrow, keep calm and continue reading. You want people to pay you for what you do, but then, do you pay other people for their services when you don’t have any proof of how good they are? I’m sure it’s a no. That’s why you will give out a portion of you for free. When you work for free, you request that your client gives you an objective review. Not only will these get you the proof, it will also help you grow. Calm down, you won’t do this for long.
GET SOCIAL MEDIA PROOF
Your social proof may not be primarily on your website or blog alone. You also need social proof across your social media channel channels. Social media proof is more effective when they are graphical. People need to see it before they believe it. You can implement the following strategies across social media:
- OFFER FREE MEETING: there’s a virtual virus that meetings help you spread. When your target audience romances your report on the meeting, along with graphics; the doubt is eroded.
Do not forget to put your camera to use when you meet with clients and customers. People trust you more because they see what you do with others.
- Create unique hashtag: having a unique hashtag that you stick to on social media helps your target market know you for what you do.
Hashtags are contagious and when you stick to one over a period of time, your brand comes to mind every time people see the hashtag.
The more you get popular, the more people would begin to copy your hashtags.
Zubi O’ Peter does this excellently well with his #PauseandThink
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WRITE A BOOK:
writing a book on your subject matter position you as an expert and it is also a great social proof for you. Your brilliance radiates through the pages of your book.
In conclusion, People will continue to make a decision based on what they see and the recommendations from others. You shouldn’t be brilliant and broke. You have what it takes to profit from your passion. Implement these strategies with the right tools and you will marvel at the opportunities coming your way.
Which social proof do you look out for when making financial decisions?
Yet to join the communities of Achievers who are earning profitably from their expertise? You are missing out on immense value and networking opportunities.