A classic way to be persuasive in advertising is to use a principle known as social proof. The principle holds that when people are uncertain about a course of action, they tend to look outside themselves and to other people around them to guide their decisions and actions.
One such way to implement this principle in advertising is to tell them about all the other people who are doing (or have done) the action you desire to influence.
Recently, I came across what seemed to be the perfect situation in an account to implement social proof. But of course, I was going to test it against the original ad to see if I was correct.
The advertiser has a site focused solely on content that helps readers to create a healthier home through providing information like recipes, organization and other tips for the home environment. Their ultimate conversion is for people to sign up for their newsletter.
One way they’ve been gaining these signups is by retargeting people through Facebook who’ve recently visited the site, giving them a chance to subscribe to the newsletter through a Facebook lead gen form.
I recently took over the strategy and management of the account. When I did, the ad on the left below was the ad running for these campaigns. The ad on the right was the ad I created as a challenger using the principle of social proof.
Because the site already has 26,000+ subscribers, I figured I could leverage this with new prospects. After all, if that many people thought it was the right thing to do, so should you right?!?! At least that’s how the human brain tends to work.
Well, here’s what happened in this test…
The challenging ad won in every major metric category, including a +29% better Conversion Rate and -49% better Cost Per Lead.
So if you’re trying to get more people to do something a significant number of people have already done, tell them about it. There’s a good chance more of them will be persuaded to take the same action.