5 Ways to Social Proof Your PPC Campaign
April 11, 2017
When you want to buy something online, do you check out the reviews on industry sites first? Read Yelp reviews before you dine at a new restaurant? Click on a Google search result because of its four-star rating?
These are all examples of accessing social proof to make a consumer decision.
Social proof is a huge driving factor in what motivates people to buy a product, sign up for an email list, click on an ad, and perform a variety of consumer actions.
One way to get more bang for your buck with your PPC campaign is to power it with social proof.
Social proof has been around long before the internet. A restaurant seating diners in front of the street-view windows? Social proof. McDonald’s signs boasting the number of people served? Social proof. The infamous 1946 ad claiming 4 out of 5 doctors prefer Camels? You guessed it – social proof. (albeit arguably the darker side of social proof.)
Social proof builds trust and gives your brand credibility in the eyes of potential converters. Social proof is one of the biggest ways consumers make purchasing decisions: 70% of consumers say they look at product reviews before making a purchase.
Although brands may wish it were otherwise, people trust other people’s opinions more than they trust what a company says about its own products or services. Product reviews are 12 times more trusted than product descriptions from manufacturers.
Social proof is so essential in today’s world that TechCrunch in 2011 dubbed social proof “the new marketing.”
So what are some ways to add social proof to your PPC campaign?
Before we get into some of the ways to add social proof to your campaign, you might be curious why social proof can be crucial to your campaign. Social proof is valuable because it:
To give you some ideas on how you can include social proof in your PPC campaigns, here are five ways you can use the power of social proof to bolster your marketing strategy.
1. Add Ratings and Reviews92% of people regularly or occasionally read online reviews. Many people won’t open their wallet until they’ve read online reviews.
Ratings and reviews can come from many sources: reviews from industry experts, peer reviews, reviews from current customers, and big brands that use your services.
Many websites take the Amazon approach with ratings and reviews and allow customers to give a star rating and add a review as well.
Social proof from experts, also known in marketing as “influencers,” can come in the form of something such as a Twitter mention, a press quote, or a blog post.
Another way to add reviews are in the form of short testimonial quotes from happy clients or customers on your ad’s landing page. Just make sure any quotes you use are the real deal, since consumers are savvy and can easily spot a fake testimonial.
Case studies can also be effective examples of social proof, since good case studies often include hard numbers to back up a company’s claim about their product or service.
Since 90% of people say online reviews influence their purchase decisions, adding some form of ratings and reviews to your PPC campaign is a smart move.
Google Seller Ratings are the yellow stars you see displayed in certain ads. It’s an automated extension in Google AdWords that automatically displays if you have at least 30 unique reviews from the past 12 months.
You don’t have to worry about having a low star rating automatically appear, though, since you need to have a composite rating of at least 3.5 stars for it to show up on your ad.
Google gathers seller ratings from reputable sources that aggregate business reviews.
Advantages of adding your star rating is that it helps your ad stand out amongst your competitors, gives you added credibility, and can boost your click-through rate (CTR).
3. Add Google Review Extensions
Google Review Extensions are reviews about your business itself, not a specific product or service. These show up in your ads when Google approves reviews you’ve submitted. It’s a great opportunity to quote reputable third parties who are singing your praises online.
With review extensions, you choose what reviews you want to showcase. For example, you could incorporate reviews from the Better Business Bureau. This adds tremendous social proof because people recognize and value the BBB.
In addition to building trust and credibility with your audience, review extensions can also boost your CTR – Google claims that AdWords review extensions increase click-through rates by up to 10%.
4. Add Video Testimonials
Video on YouTube and Facebook is wildly popular, so it’s a smart PPC move to incorporate video testimonials. Video testimonials can be included on ad landing pages or as ads on Facebook. Another good strategy is to create a video testimonial as a YouTube retargeting pre-roll ad. (the ads that play before the video begins.)
Video ads work with the same principles as a regular PPC ad, with a strong headline and clear CTA (call to action).
Since video ads have an average clickthrough rate of 1.84% – the highest clickthrough rate of all digital ad formats – incorporating them into your PPC strategy can also help increase your CTR.
Displaying the brand logos of any companies you’ve worked with on your ad landing page gives you extra clout, especially if they’re big-name players. But even if the companies you’ve worked with aren’t household names, adding their logos to your landing page can still add credibility and trust, especially if your business is in its infancy.
Social proof is a valuable way to build credibility and trust with your audience to prompt them to convert.
What’s been your experience with social proof? Let us know in the comments below.
Computer nerd turned business owner, leveraging an extensive sales background with a knack for digital marketing. Adam founded and currently runs ParaCore, a pay-per-click marketing company focused on generating leads for high-growth clients.
Author: Adam Arkfeld
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