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How Bloggers Can Leverage Social Proof to Their Advantage

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How Bloggers Can Leverage Social Proof to Their Advantage

How Bloggers Can Leverage Social Proof to Their Advantage

People follow the crowds. One of the foundational principles of marketing is how to influence the crowds, so people are just inclined to become your customers. The phenomenon where the majority influences purchasing decisions is known as social proof. Think of it as word-of-mouth on a greater scale.

Social proof is necessary to build a reliable and sustainable reader base for your blog. It’s not good enough for a hundred people to like your blog. You need to show off to those hundred people to gain thousands of additional readers. You may already be aware of some social proof strategies that drive traffic. For example, celebrity social proof, or getting a famous person or a notable blogger to mention yours, is quite well known. Some get their friends to provide reviews to attract followers. Here are several more social proof strategies that bloggers can take advantage of:

Publish Expert Testimonials

Expert testimonials are a bit different from customer or reader testimonials. The advantage of using an expert is that customers value their unbiased opinion. People assume that experts know what they are talking about.

So, if your blog is mentioned by an “expert,” you can generate a credible social proof for your blog. The expert you choose will depend on your blog. If you blog about the stock market, a professor of finance will be the right expert to use. If you blog about travel, you can use a veteran travel writer or a celebrity, for example.

Show Reader Reviews

Many e-commerce companies use customer reviews to push products and create credibility. Your blog can also use reader reviews to create a sense of popularity for your posts. If there are several user reviews sprinkled throughout your blog, a new or unsure reader will be more likely to stay and keep reading. After all, how can one dislike something dozens of other people have liked? Plus, reader reviews keep the conversation going and the users engaged.

Evaluation Results

Evaluation or test results can be a powerful form of social proof for blogs. Evaluation here means getting the services or products your blog advocates professionally tested. Post the results on your blog for the whole world to see. For example, there are shopping services that show trusted certificates to gain legitimacy and boost social proof. If your blog has been tested for anything by a professional source, and if the results were good, seriously consider showing it on your blog. The results can be a valuable tool that convinces users that your blog is proven to be superior.

Buy Social Shares

Does your blog attract 1,000 unique visitors each month? Then you should show off this number on your blog. You can include a banner or a badge saying this many people read, follow or like the blog. Showing off a like or share counter on your blog can generate more shares and likes.

If you are just starting out and do not get many likes or shares, you can pay for a “buy likes” web service. Artificially boosting visitor or traffic numbers, in the beginning, is a very effective social proof strategy. Soon, your organic numbers will naturally increase as your blog seems more credible and liked.

Ratings

Site ratings often go alongside customer reviews and testimonials mentioned above. However, a scoring system can provide its unique form of social proof. Showing positive ratings for your site can influence the impression visitors have regarding your site. For example, if a visitor initially disliked your site, high ratings can soften the harsh opinion.

Visitors are attracted to good product scores, and they rely on them as a form of credibility and legitimacy. All blogs may not be able to show off good ratings, but if it is possible, don’t hesitate to go with a scoring system. If it’s not feasible to show ratings for the whole blog, you can show ratings for individual blog posts, like product scores on Amazon.

Influencer Endorsements

This is the proverbial celebrity endorsement. Influencers are not always Hollywood A-listers. An “influencer” is technically someone who is famous, highly influential or well regarded in a certain field.

Not many people know who Dr. Duke Samson is, but if you are a surgeon, you will immediately recognize the name of one of the most well-known neurosurgeons in the world. If your blog is about medicine, having an endorsement from a luminary like that would be like winning a blog-version of an Oscar. Influencers have to be relevant as well. The more important the influencer is for his or her work, the more compelling the social proof would be.

Show Subscriber Numbers

Humans are social creatures. We are attracted to the crowds. If your blog has 10,000 subscribers, show off the numbers as you would do with the visitor numbers explained above. That short of social proof makes potential followers more comfortable with following. Think about it; would you rather subscribe to a blog you can see is followed by thousands of other people or one that is not? When you show the subscriber numbers, design a CTA button nearby to get people to subscribe. The number will likely be able to compel visitors to join up.

Media Coverage Logos

Has CNN mentioned your blog? Then, instead of writing a post about it, publish a prominent logo of CNN on your blog. If your blog has won any accolades, do not hesitate to show off the badge either. When visitors click on it, allow the link to take them to the article or segment mentioning your blog. Media coverage logos are a very powerful form of social proof that shows potential readers that your blog gets recognition from relevant sources. It can elevate your blog to a higher status of legitimacy than others without. Of course, you should only publish logos of established and well-known media outlets. If an obscure radio station mentions your blog, don’t add a logo on your site. No one will recognize it. If you say little-known outlets have covered your site, it can result in the opposite of what you are hoping. Your blog could end up endorsing the outlets rather than the other way around.

Master the above strategies, and sooner rather than later your blog’s unique visitor numbers will dramatically increase.

Christopher Jan Benitez is a freelance writer for hire who provides actionable and useful web content to small businesses and startups. In his spare time, he religiously watches professional wrestling and finds solace in listening to '80s speed metal.

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3 Tips for Bonding with Blogging Influencers

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Forget traditional influencer marketing. We want to go deeper.

Bloggers teach influencer marketing from a less genuine space sometimes. Imagine learning how to try to get someone to do something for you. Manipulation marketing. Fear-based marketing. Problems arise; spam folders become your landing spot. I observe a decent percentage of influencer marketing emails in my spam folder because fear-pitches get labeled as spam and become spam, 100% of the time.

What is the solution? Learn how to bond with blogging influencers.

I remember people who befriend me. I admire people who endorse me or promote me. I appreciate people who buy my course or eBooks. I love people who generously help me for months. Guess what? Bonding with established bloggers influences the influencers. I do stuff for dear blogging friends I do not do for anybody else. If a friend sends me a guest post and their writing is tight, I place it. Even if said post spans 1000 words or more – my minimum count is 600 – I place it without hesitating. Friends found my heart. Friends influenced me through kindness and generosity. I am largely putty in their blogging hands.

Instead of trying to manipulate a successful stranger, bond with a friend. Change your approach to influencer marketing. Make friends. Help without asking. In time, blogging bonds form organically. If you practice writing, the world becomes your oyster because influencers take you to new levels of success, without you even asking.

Follow these tips to bond with influencers.

1: Buy a Resource

The best way to bond with an influencer is to get inside their heads.

Influential bloggers had to influence influential bloggers on the way up to become influential. Invest in a resource like my influential blogger eBook to learn how influencers do it. Speak their language. Connect. Take their viewpoint. Learn how to be influential yourself.

When you discover how to be influential through my resource you in essence, learn how to influence, influencers, by bonding with these pros.

2: Spend a Few Months Giving Not Asking

Bloggers I remember, then befriend, spend at least a few months giving and not asking. Someone buys my course, publishes 10 comments on my blog, and retweets my posts 10 or 20 times during a 3 month period. These people pop up on my radar screen because they gave and asked for nothing. Bonds form. Friendships develop.

Retweet fellow bloggers. Help them. Feature fellow bloggers. Open your blog to guest posting. Guest post on other blogs. Comment genuinely on blogs. Buy products.

Ask for nothing, for at least 3-4 months. Allow friendships to form organically. Blogging friends help each other because blogging friends trust each other. Influential bloggers fall into this helping lot too, as you generously serve them, ask for nothing and polish your writing skills. I gained more endorsements from pros by being generous than through any other method. Help influential bloggers. Ask for nothing. Influential bloggers help you without you asking for a darn thing.

3: Never Rush the Process

Some blogger friend requested me on Facebook a few moments ago. I scanned my messages to see his business pitch in the “other” folder. He simply rushed the process of pitching an established blogger. I appreciate the friend request but pitching your business before generously helping me ensures I ignore all future messages. He rushed the process so I let him go.

Perhaps he smartens up and begins helping me generously without asking for anything. After a few months of helping me and asking for nothing, we bond. We become friends. From there, the opportunities are limitless. Even if I do not use his service, if he has skills and a reputable business model I can share his services with my readers.

Good things take some time. Never rush the bonding process.

Allow bonds to form organically to do influencer marketing right.

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How Do Blogging and Fitness Relate?

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I spend 3 hours daily honing my mental and physical fitness.

In truth, you can and will succeed online following simple fundamentals from a generous, detached energy. No need to be fit to go full time blogging. But if you feel bad because your body feels bad and your mind fears losing it all, have you succeeded? I do not believe so.

I wrote an eBook sharing my daily regimen to explain what many of you readers want to know: how do I do it all? I am no blogging god. I am just human. But I write and connect quite a bit. People wish to know how I wrote 100 plus eBooks in addition to all the other stuff I do while circling the globe. Well, blogging and fitness are 2 peas in a pod for me. Both play a big role if you desiring leveling up and feeling good predominantly as you enjoy the ride.

Blogging and Fitness

Let’s say you wake up on a Monday morning as a full time employee who blogs part time. Feeling terrible and dreading work, why write and publish a post? Too busy. Do it later. Put off the post until tonight. But you feel too tired that night. Repeat this cycle for 3 months. 90 days passed. Still no blog post. Why? You filled your mind with fear and pain. Manifesting as blogging loss, backburnering the post for 3 months indicates fear in mind. Why fear? 100% of the time, fear dominates minds of people who spend zero time on mental fitness, never meditating or doing deep yin yoga or observing their thoughts and feelings. Most of the time, these same folks dominated by their own fears never commit seriously to being physically fit through exercising.

Feel good by caring for your mind and body. Vibe higher than fears crippling most bloggers. Imagine the above scenario with one difference: you devote 1-2 hours daily exercising and raising your energy via mindset training. Devote 30 minutes to power walking and 30 minutes to deep yin yoga. On waking that Monday morning, either a blog post idea finds you and you write the post, or after a few uncomfortable moments and feelings, the idea flows to you and you write the post.

I cannot explain this process logically because it flows 100% emotionally, feelings-wise. Visualize yourself in moments you feel really good. All seems possible. Ideas flow to you. Opportunities flow to you. Why? Feeling good magnetizes you to freeing, success-promoting ideas. Being fit mentally and physically is the easiest way to feel good most of the time. Plus in those moments you feel bad mentally and physically, you face, feel and release the bad feelings, quickly, because you feel mentally and physically fit, predominantly.

Gratitude

Being fit naturally alerts you to the success-promoting idea of gratitude. Gratitude builds blogging success because seeing every penny of income, every blog comment and all interest in your blogging courses feels awesome to you. Feeling awesome inspires you to blog for years generously. Blogging generously for years makes you successful.

Corey at the Good Oil Marketing retweeted my blogging course recently. I feel grateful he spread the word for me considering he is a successful, high level marketer. I feel these feelings and build on my success because I feel grateful. I feel grateful because I trained my mind and body to feel good, through being fit daily, in order to tune into appreciation easily.

Get fit.

Don’t quit.

Be a successful blogger by being mentally and physically fit.

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Why Doing this Works Better than Asking for Business Referrals

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After I released my flagship eBook – How to Retire to a Life of Island Hopping through Smart Blogging – I noticed something neat. My sales increased 12 fold the day I published a guest post for a highly successful blogger.

Seeing this spike clued me in to the quickest, easiest way to increase business: help people for free. Being generous improves skills, increases exposure and expands your business. Greater traffic and profits follow generous bloggers because helping people for free helps you be skilled and see, two qualities in every prospering blogger who reaps sweet blogging profits.

A large set of bloggers goes in another direction. Some ask for business referrals from trusted blogging buddies to drum up business. Feel free to take this route but know referral fishing is an ineffective way to drive profits because of two clear reasons:

  • referral-seeking seems to be time-wasting
  • referral-seeking rarely inspires trusted bloggers to take clear, business-building action, for you

I know 20 plus web developers. A few trusted blogging web developer buddies have reached out to me, seeking referrals. Two issues arise:

  • the referral seeker has no idea if I know bloggers needing web development; non-targeted campaign
  • I already know 20 plus developers, trusted buddies all, so I could never choose one to refer to someone if 20 seem qualified

Top Bloggers Become Ruthlessly Effective with their Time

Versus seeking referral business by asking blogging buddies if they know someone requiring your service, spend 20 minutes to write and publish a quality guest post for a blogger in your business niche. Instead of pitching 1 human, show off your web development skills for free, via a guest post, for 1,000 people. Do you see what I mean? Leverage. Do not ask for business. Serve for business. Although time needs pass and generosity needs inclusion in blogging business-building, helping for free is the quickest, simplest way to increase blogging business because you reach large, targeted audiences of clients with your attention and energy versus asking 1 person for business in non-targeted, ineffective fashion.

12 Times Daily Sales

I recall the day vividly, 5 years ago. I created and launched Blogging From Paradise. Before writing 100 plus eBooks, I wrote one. I did drive some sales through my blog but guest posting woke me up; why not leverage my presence and grow business by helping people for free, via different platforms? Eye-opener for me. Instead of asking, I gave. How easy? Giving freely is the easiest way to get freely. I observed a 12 times daily sales eBook increase for good reason that day: helping people generously through sites other than your blog is a simple way to grow your blogging business.

The simplest, direct, effective way to grow your business is to help people for free. Asking for referrals leads to a client or customer here and there, but full time bloggers are not in the “here and there” business as far as growing your venture. Pro bloggers drive steady profits through their blog by being generous on their blog and on other platforms.

Be helpful for free. Publish posts. Submit guest posts. Run a podcast. Broadcast live on Facebook. Help people for free to help people for pay. Versus untargeted referral-seeking, this is the effective way to grow your blogging business from a generous, genuine energy.

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