Social Proof

Social proof is a powerful trigger, and it’s often overlooked by many.

If a restaurant waiting list is hours long, odds are there’s a good reason. Why else would people waste time and stand in line if the food wasn’t great?

The online version of social proof is a bit more nuanced. There are tons of ways to attract and showcase proof that people actually appreciate your stuff. And the larger the number, the better. These could be numbers of….

  • likes
  • stumbles
  • number of comments
  • votes
  • +1’s
  • fans
  • favorites
  • saves
  • shares
  • forwards
  • subscribers
  • followers
  • retweets
  • clips
  • views
  • thumbs up
  • sales
  • stars
  • watches

All of these combine to show the visitor how great other people think your stuff is.

But here’s the kicker:

You can’t collect social proof without actually creating something first.

So often we worry about how we can collect these shards of social approval before starting. (I’m guilty of this probably more than anyone reading this.)

But it’s also been my firsthand experience that anything that goes viral isn’t usually planned. It’s carefully created first, and everything else falls into place. People go out of their way to show their approval if it resonates.

So let’s get started, shall we?

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