Influencers, they have actually been around for years, but with the growth of social media you see their presence is increasing. Being an influencer is actually a real job and as a brand deploying it should be an essential part of your marketing strategy. Why are influencers so effective? And above all, how can you use them for your brand?
Influencers, reviews and showing expertise are all effective methods to influence the buying behavior of your target group. This is due to the old psychological phenomenon called “social proof”. Social proof is a concept as old as marketing itself and is the trust that people place in the actions or feedback of other people.
As an example take a street with two restaurants. The one restaurant where it is super busy is often preferred over the restaurant that is empty. Due to the crowds, someone quickly labels this restaurant as better. After all, not so many people can be wrong right? Online reviews have the same effect. People are quicker to opt for what (many) other people have already opted for.
So you can actually see social proof as all the positive (and sometimes negative) things that are said about your brand. There are six different types of social proof you can use:
Expert social proof
Confirmation or approval of an “expert”. This expert can, for example, be a dentist in a toothpaste commercial, but influencers are also included.
Celebrity social proof
A slight overlap with the previous one, because influencers are sometimes seen as celebrities. Nonetheless, this means “real” well-known people or celebrities.
User social proof
Showing user success stories or showing reviews of other users. For example, put testimonials on the most important pages of your website and add a photo or even video to make it even more convincing.
Audience social proof
Here the amount of users is shown to show the popularity. This is deployed with the idea “If so many people have already used it, then it will probably be good”. You can do this by, for example, showing a counter that shows how many users are subscribed to your newsletter or how many people like, share or follow your brand or a post.
Friends social proof
The best of all types of social proof: recommendations from friends. Your friends know you best, so if they recommend it, it will probably be good.
Not only let experts / influencers talk about your product, but also show yourself as an expert works well. You can do this by showing certificates, badges or prizes that you as a brand have won.
It doesn’t come as a surprise that the majority of these types of social proof can be applied with the help of an influencer.