So you’re thinking about buying the new iPhone X. You’ve done hours of research into all the different features the new iPhone comes with and are happy that it beats the rest of the competition. You’ve had a look at all the different providers to see who is offering the best package and you’ve convinced yourself that it’s okay to spend £1,000, you’ll just have to spend a little less at Christmas this year. You’re ready to jump online to purchase, and nothing is going to stop you.

Before you make that final commitment, you decide to give you friend a call because ‘he’s good with this sort of stuff.’

“Oh no, you don’t want the iPhone X! It’s terrible! You want to wait for the new Samsung S9 to come out, it’s going to be way better…and cheaper!” He says.

Right there and then, something happens. All of the research you’ve done has flown out the window. All of the hours spent convincing yourself that buying the iPhone X is a great idea have been wasted. You’re now doubting yourself. What do you do?

 

This is a perfect, and common example of the power of ‘social proof’. When it comes to making purchasing decisions, the majority of us look towards friends and family for ‘proof’ that the decision we are making is a good one. If somebody we trust validates the purchasing decision, then we mitigate the risk, making us feel much more relaxed.

Many businesses now, especially the ones who utilise social media as part of their marketing efforts, rely on the power of ‘social proof’ to strengthen their positioning. 88% of buyers consider online reviews “very influential” when making a purchase decision. It’s simple; the brands that are trusted will ultimately be more successful.

What are social influencers?

Social influencers are people who have a following on social media that they’ve built up themselves, in a particular area. These might be prolific bloggers, vloggers, models, sportspeople, etc (they don’t always have to be a celebrity). Social influencers use the power of social proof to connect your brand with their fans through the use of promotional content. Think of them as powerful brand advocates that you can buy.

The cost of social influencers can vary, depending on the size of their following. The majority of social influencers expect a monetary payment for their services, however individuals with large followings on social media who don’t class themselves as ‘influencers’ will often shout about your brand just because you sent them some freebies. The trick is always just to ask.

 

Why are they important?

As we’ve hopefully explained above, ‘social proof’ is a powerful thing. It is an important behaviour to understand for every business, whether you are a consumer focused brand or a corporate entity. Social influencers enable brands to further the power of social proof, by communicating to audiences that they may otherwise spend months and months attracting organically, through people that are trusted.

If Cristiano Ronaldo puts a picture on Instagram of ‘his’ new Adidas boots, you can bet that every young boy aged between 8-18 is going to be hounding their parents for £80 so they can get a pair for themselves. Why? Because if the best footballer in the world has them, they must be good!

 

If you would like to discuss how social influencers might help your business, contact us today.