People want proof.
Today's episode – we dive into the whole topic of social proof.
Social proof is a way to show your audience that you have credibility and have been able to help other people get results in some way. You get to demonstrate your expertise through the way you help or serve other people.
The trick here is that social proof can be from people you've worked with. It could be people who have been through your program, past customers, whoever has been in your world and benefited from your experience. It could be someone who's bought something from you in the past or simply been a part of your audience and has gotten results from something FREE you've offered.
5 simple ways to gather social proof before a launch
Launching something for the first time, not sure you’ve got any proof to share?
1.Ask Past Clients And People You’ve Helped
You all may know that the first launch I managed was Marie Forleo’s B-School and so that became my proof to people that I actually knew what I was talking about.
Yeah, it's funny because the decade of experience prior to that was a drop in the bucket compared to people really saying, “Oh, Anne's worked with Marie Forleo and Laura Roeder on all of their launches.” That was enough in those initial days to get things off the ground.
What I’ve also used is people who’ve worked with me one on one…even if they never went through my program!
Don't try to pull it off that they're past customers if they're not. I think these types of character references, character proof are valid and are very important. It's okay to find someone who maybe that you've sent an email to, you've had some exchange with, maybe you had one conversation with, maybe you just have gotten to know in a different way.
Make sure you reach out to people you’ve worked with (even in a day job) and get their “testimonial” working with you. LinkedIn even has a place to ask for this type of feedback too… steal their language. We ask for references for new jobs, think of this as the same thing!
2. Find Beta-Testers
Make a list of people you trust and can benefit from your product to actually follow through to test your product, course, service, give you feedback–you both get something from it!
I highly recommend this method of letting people give you their feedback, be part of the product’s story….Sometimes you have to do this to get enough eyes looking at what you’ve created. Think about it — most authors send advance copies of their books out to get early reviews from people. You can do the same with whatever you sell.
Don't think that you can't send test copies of your course or your digital project out to get that advanced feedback. That will help you when people know that other people are already loving what they are considering buying.
3. Sell Your Course & Ask For Feedback
Okay, I know. This sounds obvious, but what I mean here is this. It’s easy to forget to ask people for feedback, but you have to do it…
Let's say you sell and you launch a course or you launch a product, make sure you follow up with those customers of that specific product and get their feedback.
A great way to get testimonials is to ask for feedback instead. Give a bonus in return for their feedback. Make the feedback part of your graduation.
Instead of just saying, “Hey, I'd like to know if you can give me a testimonial.”
A better approach might be saying, “Hey, I'd like to get some feedback about this course you just went through so I can make it better for you.”
You could also offer to feature them in your next launch. People use their testimonial of you as social proof sometimes for their own business!
Here are a few examples of how I've featured people in Fearless Launching:
4. Get The Where Are They Now Story
This is by far my favorite thing to do when gathering social proof… I like to check in with your customers long after the fact, long after their purchase.
One of the things that I love to do is find out where are they now.
What have they learned? What do they still remember? Things that really stuck with them. What did they change?
Think how finding out the impact to someone’s business or life long after they purchased one thing from you.
That's where your genius zone lies and that's something that you can say, you know, “So and So went through my course when I first put it out and they are still benefiting from it.”
Don't think you need just all new testimonials every single time you launch.
Highlight those people as alums that are respected, that are now experts in the community. I have a lot of people who have transitioned from just customers, to friends, to mastermind partners, and then, like I said, to experts in the community.
Bottom line is that finding out where customers are now shows the lasting impact of learning from you, of being in your world, of investing in you now because it's not just a one-time thing.
Plus, it shows that you’re not in it for the one off purchase.
They're going to feel the repercussions of whatever they've bought from you for ages.
5. Find Out What Your Non-Customers Think
Then the fifth way is simply by getting feedback from people who are not customers yet.
Maybe their experience with you is through free downloads or classes or products or samples. Or maybe they've just been touched by you, inspired by you on like a live broadcast. They show up to your life broadcasts. They comment on your blog post. They like your Facebook page and posts. They Re-Tweet you. Those people count too.
Feature them before they're customers. Feature their results before they've even spent a dime on you.
Guess what? The side effect to that is that they might even become customers as a result.
Final Thoughts About Social Proof
These are just a few ways to get that social proof because social proof on your sales pages, at the bottom of your shop listings, shared in your newsletter at the very bottom, those are great ways to highlight people.
Always be thinking how could I highlight more people who have benefited from what I shared with them, like, that's all you want really, right? If you are in the business to help people, serve people, teach people, inspire people, then why not thank them by featuring them?
If you want help brainstorming how to gather social proof for your next launch and are launching soon, we talk about this exact topic and more inside Fearless Launching.
1) Free Launch Workbook/Planner: Grab this completely free launch planning workbook. Download, print, and start planning your launch today — don’t forget to add in the test and secure your website tasks!
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