5 Social Proof Tips to Boost Email Marketing Results
By Kelsey Johnson October 11, 2021
Looking to boost the results of your email marketing? Adding social proof to your emails is proven to make readers more likely to click, call, sign up, and buy.
Let’s assume you either have or plan to set up a sign up page, autoresponder, welcome series, and/or promotional email strategy. You can include social proof in any of these for more sign ups, clicks, and sales.
For example, AWeber uses these testimonials from successful customers in order to show the value of our platform and specific ways customers have seen success with it. These testimonials provide online proof that real people with real businesses use and like our tools.
Social proof is an expert marketing trick that takes very little effort. Read on to learn what it is and how you can utilize it successfully in your email marketing.
What is social proof?
Social proof is a psychological phenomenon. It’s actually related to the fear of missing out, or FOMO.
Here’s how it works: When someone is thinking about making a decision — whether it’s a purchase, signing up for an email list, or anything else — they regularly look for advice from others.
This is why, when you’re looking for a new dentist or hairdresser, you likely ask your friends and family who they go to.
But when it comes to decisions that are less universal, like buying an online course, signing up for a newsletter, or trying out software, you may not know someone personally who has the right experience.
Instead, many people look to trusted experts who give advice and recommend products and services. These could be anywhere from professional business coaches to YouTube stars trying new products.
However, if you don’t have an expert or personal contact you trust to give you feedback on a product or service, you look to the internet for advice — from reviews, testimonials, etc. This feedback is called social proof, and it’s very popular.
For example, here’s a review of AWeber on Trustpilot:
Over 90% of people look for at least one review before making a purchase decision.
You can use reviews about your business from TrustPilot, Yelp, Google Reviews, Amazon, or even Facebook. If your business has been around for a while — at least a couple of months — it’s likely you already have glowing reviews you could use. But if you’re new, you might want to opt for a different kind of social proof.
There are many ways to provide social proof to your prospects. Consider any of these:
- Feedback posted on social media
- Testimonials and case studies
- Award or trust badges
- Customer data
- General or business specific reviews
Now that we understand what social proof is, how can we use it in our email marketing?
6 ways to boost your email marketing results with social proof
1. Get more sign ups with FOMO
56% of people suffer from FOMO or fear of missing out. They may fear missing out on a good deal, a cool product, or fantastic content — like your emails!
Here’s how to make this FOMO work for you: Find a review online from someone who likes your business. Whether it’s on a review site or social media, you can copy the embed code and add it above your signup form. This works on a blog, landing page, or website — anywhere really!
Take it to the next level with a testimonial that specifically talks about the benefit of receiving your emails. You can ask one of your biggest fans to say something relevant. Or ask for feedback from your current subscribers and include the positive comments next to your sign up form.
Always include a picture, name, and title with your review or testimonial. It’ll give others more confidence and trust in what that person has to say.
2. Earn trust from your subscribers immediately
Immediately after someone signs up for your list, send them a welcome email — with another review or testimonial.
You aren’t done earning the attention and trust of your subscribers when they subscribe. You need to continue to provide information they find valuable and interesting.
The first email you send after they subscribe is your best chance to convince them to open all your emails, save them, remove them from the promotions tab, and engage with your content.
Adding social proof to this first email will help. Having a third-party back-up your claims to quality will psychologically convince more of your readers.
So grab a review or testimonial (that’s different from the one next to your sign up form) and include it in your welcome email — either as a separate section in the middle or end of the email, or even included within the text.
3. Make more sales
83% of people trust reviews over advertising. You’ll have a lot more success with promotional and sales emails if you include social proof with your sales pitch.
For example, let’s say you sell a course on financial stability and happiness. Sending emails to your subscribers promoting your course is a no-brainer.
Explain what the course is about, how long it takes, who it’s for, but also include a review from someone who has already taken the course. Try and find a review that specifically talks about how they benefited from your offering.
Take it to the next level by writing a case study about the person who had success from taking your course. Tell their story, starting with the problems they had before what you offer and then how they were resolved from your amazing financial course. Maybe this person struggled with student loans but was able to get everything under control with the advice you gave.
Here’s an example of an email packed with customer testimonials. Read through it — are you more inclined to use this product afterwards?
This is not only a great way to make more sales, but it’s a good content idea for anyone who struggles to think of what to write. One email can be entirely testimonials — let your customers speak for you.
4. Use trust badges to get referrals
One of the best ways to increase your signups is through referrals. Remember those recommendations from friends we talked about earlier? They can work for your email list too.
Include a section in one or all of your emails asking your subscribers to forward the email to their friends and co-workers who may be interested in your content.
This is a fantastic place to use trust badges. Have you won any awards that prove you are the authority in your subject matter? Even small awards often come with a “badge” that you can include.
People take recommendations seriously. If you are a subject matter expert or have won awards for your products, services, or content, your current subscribers will feel more inclined to share your email.
5. Turn abandoned carts into sales with humor
Great news! Someone was excited enough to add your offering to their digital cart. But, they left before finalizing the sale.
Sending an abandoned cart email is a great way to remind prospects about their purchase — especially if they didn’t buy because of a convenience issue, like not being able to find a credit card.
These emails should be very short and to-the-point. But they can greatly benefit from social proof and humor, both of which can be taken from a social media post.
Find a post on social media that shouts out your product or service in a funny way. Then, point to it in your abandoned cart email — it’ll capture your potential purchaser’s attention, and likely result in more sales overall.
Whether you simply add a testimonial to your sales emails or write an entire case study, try using social proof in your email marketing today. Let us know how it goes in the comments!
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