· Have you ever posted in your social media asking for a recommendation for a specific product or service?
· Have you ever scoured through a company's website to read their reviews before buying the product?
· Have you ever read through testimonials before deciding on engaging a professional's service?
Two consumer surveys done over 2 different years (2016 and 2018) showed that 82% of consumers would seek recommendations / reviews from family, friends and websites prior to making a purchase. And get this. 91% would likely purchase a product or use a business after reading positive reviews. 91%. That is a staggering number of conversions.
Testimonials and reviews are part of what we call: Social Proof.
Social Proof is a term coined by Robert Cialdini in his 1984 book, Influence. This is also known as informational social influence. This is a psychological marketing tool and also phenomenon where people tend to copy the actions of others in any given situation. Let's put it this way. You are more likely to trust and purchase a product just by reading 10 positive reviews about it. Somehow your mind will tell you: It cannot go wrong if 10 people bought this and loved it. By reading testimonials and reviews, you formulate a certainty for your purchase. That's one way Social Proof works.
There are 6 types of Social Proof:
1. Expert - An expert in your field who endorses or recommends your product.
2. Celebrity - influencers and celebrities who shares about your product in their platform.
3. Users - Someone who has used your product and writes about it in his/her social media platform.
4. Wisdom of a crowd - hundreds and thousands of users who follow you because of your product.
5. Wisdom of friends - their friends recommend your product which makes them want to purchase.
6. Certification - This is the stamp of approval given by an authoritative figure in your industry. Could be your ACE certification if you're a personal trainer, etc.
So why am I writing about this?
Because many fitness trainers have failed to use this concept to help them with their conversions. For one, 99% of trainers rely solely on their social media platform, which is okay, but doesn't help much with social proof. You may get the "wisdom of a crowd" but most posts in social media translates to "he has a hot body" or "she is cute." There is nothing allows you to boast about what you can actually do. And if you do post testimonials in your Insta Stories, those appear just for 24 hours and nothing more. Yes, you can highlight those Stories, but how many people actually click on the highlights to watch them after?
So what can you do?
CREATE A WEBSITE. Collate your client's testimonials and place it at a prominent spot for everyone to read. This is not about humble bragging. This is to show proof to everyone who wants to find out more about you that your product, your training system, works and can work for them too. They won't have to wonder if you're the trainer for them. They won't have to wonder if you're the real deal or just a guy with a hot bod. They'll know or have a higher inkling to give you a try after sifting through the testimonials and reviews. Right now, if you don't have a website or have any form of social proof, you're missing out on converting 91% of the 82% who wants to train with you. Do you have any idea how much money that is?