You’re hungry. You want something to eat. Walking down the street you see two restaurants. One has a queue of people out the door, the other has just a few people inside. Which do you choose?
You’re on eBay. Two sellers have the product you want at the same price, but one has sold more. Which do you choose?
You’re booking your holiday and you need a hotel. There are two that have the same rating and are a similar price, but one has had three bookings in the last few hours and only has a few rooms left. Which do you choose?
Chances are you picked the restaurant with the queue, the seller who had sold more, and the hotel with the recent bookings.
The reason for this is social proof.
In this blog, we’ll explain what social proof is, why marketers should be using it, and how you can use social proof in your video marketing strategy.
What is social proof?
Social proof, also referred to as social influence or herd instinct, is a psychological phenomenon whereby people make decisions based on the behaviour of those around them because they think that is the best course of action.
You choose the restaurant with the queue because if people are queuing the food must be good. You choose the seller who’s sold more products because other users buy more from them. You choose the hotel with the recent bookings because people are booking there too. Maybe they’ve been before.
Marketers can and should leverage social proof to help persuade to customers to invest in their product or service. Social proof builds trust, adds credibility, and helps people make decisions.
How marketers can use social proof
There are lots of ways marketers can use social proof. Some typical examples of social proof are:
- Ratings and reviews: from Amazon to Uber, TripAdvisor to Trustpilot, ratings are everywhere. In fact, Marketing Land found that 90% of customers said their buying decisions were influenced by online reviews.
- Influencer Endorsement: expert opinions matter, especially where it comes to making decisions. You can leverage this in multiple ways. Getting an endorsement from an industry expert is one. Tools like Klout and Buzzsumo help you to identify influencers on social media. A social share from an influencer will not only help you reach a wider audience but also boost your credibility. Another way is to make high-profile clients visible on your website and marketing materials. Show people that you have both their trust and business.
- Subscriber, follower, and share counts: are you more likely to watch a video on Facebook if it’s got 100 or 1,000,000 views? Or sign up for a mailing list with 10 or 10,000 people on it? Including counts can help persuade people to convert as it shows how many of their peers have already engaged with your content. Show how many people you have on your email list to prove its popularity. Show how many times your blog post has been shared to demonstrate its authority.
Including social proof in your video marketing strategy
Kissmetrics explain that you should make your social proof visual, citing research that found pictures of people increase trust.
They also list testimonials as their number 1 most effective social proof strategy.
Meanwhile, Hubspot found that over 50% of marketers agreed that video content had the highest ROI.
A video testimonial combines these three powerful elements to create content that will have the power to persuade audiences in a way that written testimonials alone cannot.
A video testimonial doesn’t have to just be a talking head though. As Martin explains below, we like to create testimonials that are a bit different, testimonials that tell real stories and engage their audience.
Video testimonial examples
Lifelink are a Glasgow-based charity offering support for people of all ages dealing with stress and emotional management. The team work with individuals to help them make positive life changes that improve the way they live and their quality of life.
We created these testimonial videos with Lifelink to promote the services that they offer. There are two main reasons these videos work, other than their creative approach. First, they tell a story, which is something that viewer can engage and empathise with. Second, the story is about the person telling it, which creates trust.
StoriiCare is a platform used by the care sector as a life story and reminiscence tool, enabling families and carers to collaborate, building life stories and preserving memories that really matter. These stories are accessible to families anywhere in the world.
We created this testimonial video for StoriiCare to promote their app to a wide range of audiences. Like Lifelink, this testimonial tells a story. But another reason why this testimonial works so well is that it features people who use the StoriiCare app and shows them actually using it.
Are you interested in creating a video testimonial to promote your product or service? Talking heads work well, but as you can see above, testimonial videos have the scope to be more creative and engaging. We can create a video testimonial campaign for your business from as little as £1,500. Want to know more? Get in touch »