What Is Social Proof?

Reading time6 minutes
Jaqueline Corradi
Jaqueline Corradi
Content Manager

What is social proof and how does it impact your business? If you are promoting your business, it's important to know how social proof can help you increase sales, and give credibility to your brand.

When a customer leaves a positive review about your products and services or recommends it to a friend, they are evidence of your brand quality and help drive attention to your business. Social proof has the power to influence people to make purchases and engage with your brand. Check out the article to learn more.

What Is Social Proof in Marketing?

Social proof is defined as a psychological phenomenon where people emulate the behavior of others when they don't know what to do in a social situation. When someone is in a new place, for instance, at a party where they don't know anyone and feel lost, it's common to observe the surroundings to take hints and copy how the others are acting to fit in.

In marketing, social proof is connected to how people can influence others to buy a product or service and engage with a brand. It's seen in the form of customer reviews, recommendations, likes, and expert opinions.

When someone is in doubt if they should buy a product, they often look for reviews online, ask their friends' opinions, and are also influenced by indicators like the number of people who bought the product or if there is a waiting line.

Some examples of social proof are customer testimonials on product pages, product ratings, and reviews left on social media platforms.

Why Is Social Proof Important in Marketing?

Increase Sales

Encouraging customers to leave reviews and rate your products and services can help you sell more. 66% of consumer are more likely to make a purchase when they see positive customer reviews, and 92% of consumers feel hesitant to buy if there isn't any customer review.

Enhance Credibility

Social proof also helps to build your brand's authority and credibility. When people see good reviews, they tend to believe in your company's expertise in your product's niche. 83% of consumers believe that a business with a user-generated review on its landing page is trustworthy, while 74% of consumers say that reviews increase trust in a company.

Grow Brand Awareness

When many people comment about the good quality of your products and services by leaving reviews, engaging on your social media pages, and sharing your content, it increases brand awareness. It drives attention to your brand as people feel curious to discover more about what people are talking about and it encourages them to test your products.

Increase Social Presence

Social proof also helps to increase your social presence online, it gives you more visibility and drives traffic to your website and social media profiles as a consequence. That's very important to conquer your space in the digital market.

How to Measure Social Proof

When the question is "what is social proof?", it's necessary to evaluate how to collect and measure it. The methods you will implement depend on your marketing strategies, but some of the main indicators are:

  • Number of likes
  • Number of comments
  • Number of followers
  • Number of shares
  • Number of reviews
  • Quality of the reviews
  • Number of products sold
  • Product ratings
  • Referrals
  • Number of downloads

5 Types of Social Proof

1. Celebrity

Celebrity social proof refers to when someone famous mentions your product or service. For example, you have a makeup line and a Hollywood actress posts a story applying a lipstick from your brand.

2. Expert

Expert social proof is when a specialist from your industry sector recommends your product or service. For example, a dermatologist ranks the sunscreen from your brand in the top ten in this category. This endorsement gives you credibility and reassures the customers that your product is good.

3. User

Reviews left by customers using your product and services are user social proofs. In this case, you have the endorsement of your customers, who are testifying to your brand's quality.

4. Certification

Certifications given by authorities in their sectors are also social proof. It can be, for example, the quality certification provided by a renowned institution in your area. For instance, in gastronomy, when a restaurant has a Michelin star, it is seen as one of the best in the world.

5. Friend Recommendation

Another type of social proof is when a friend recommends a brand, product, or service to you.

How to Use Social Proof

Case Studies

One of the ways to use social proof to promote your business is by publishing case studies on your website. You will choose satisfied customers, who have a long and successful relationship with your brand and write a text showing how your product or service helped the customer to achieve their objective.

For example, if you have a marketing agency, and were hired by a fashion brand to increase engagement on social media platforms. You can write a case study explaining how the brand increased the number of followers and interactions with the work made by your agency.

Testimonials and Reviews

Add a customer review section on your product pages. This way, everyone who accesses it can check the product rating and the comments left by other customers who purchased the product. Encourage your customers to leave reviews, and show them how their opinions are important to you.

Existing Customers

Another type of social proof you can use to gain credibility if you are a B2B company is showing renowned brands you have worked with. You can create a section on the homepage where you will put the brand logos, so your target audience can see which companies trust your products and services.

Awards and Certificates

Publish certificates and awards your company has received on your website. They show your brand is recognized by its qualities in the market, and help to increase your credibility.

User Generated Content

Encourage your customers to create content related to your brand. You can create a hashtag, and ask the customers to use it when they publish a picture or video using your product, for instance. This increases your brand visibility, and you can reach a bigger audience.

Influencer Marketing

You can also make campaigns with digital influencers that are relevant to your industry market. The influencers of your choice will publish content on their social media promoting your product or service. As they have a base of followers who see them as authorities in their niche, when your product is mentioned by an influencer, you gain more credibility as well.


Some key performance indicators such as the number of followers on social media platforms, and the number of sales can be used as social proof. They endorse that your brand is relevant and that you offer high-quality products and services.

Enjoy Social Proof Benefits

Now that the question "What is social proof" has been answered, it's time to think about how you can collect reviews from your customers to use them to promote your brand. Use the different types of social proof on your website pages, gather data that proves the success of your business, and show them to your target audience.

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