How to Use Social Proof In Your Game Marketing Strategy
by Game Marketing Genie, on 27-Feb-2020 13:28:03
There is no point in having a gaming studio if you’re not bringing in players. You want your audience to convert and you need to market in a way that does this.
You can invest in search and social media ads, content marketing and more to promote your brand. However, you also need to remember that word of mouth is an important and powerful marketing technique that you can and should harness.
Recommendations from your own players or collaborations with others can be some of the strongest marketing strategies your studio can rely on. But why does word of mouth work so well? This can be explained by a psychological concept called social proof.
What is social proof and why is it important?
Social proof was first mentioned by Robert Cialdini in his 1984 book, Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. It explains the phenomenon in which people copy the actions and behaviors of others in an attempt to replicate the correct behavior in a given situation.
In simpler terms, people typically see a behavior as being “more correct” when they see it performed in a specific situation by others. And the marketing world largely revolves around this.
Advertisements, recommendations and endorsements affect the way we make choices in our shopping habits. Gaming studios rely on their players to reflect positively on them to encourage more people to spend their money there. Whether you’re aware of it or not, many of your and your players’ purchases are swayed by others’ opinions on them. People will more often choose products or services that others say are better or appropriate in certain situations. It is this conformity that is key to much of your marketing, and it is essential to pull in conversions.
With the era of online marketing well in swing, we have more opportunities than ever to compare companies with each other. If you’re relying on digital marketing, your audience usually won’t have the opportunity to try out your products or services and will have to rely on what their peers have to say about you. Their choices can also be influenced by popular personalities favorably reviewing and featuring your brand.
This means that even if they like what you’re offering, if others have rated your company poorly or you’re not associating yourself with people your audience trusts, you’re more likely to miss out on a player.
Three ways to use social proof to improve your marketing strategy
Influencer marketing is the endorsement of products or services by personalities with loyal audiences, and is a classic example of the effect of social proof on your audience’s likelihood to invest in your brand. 49% of people say that they use influencer recommendations when choosing to purchase products or services. This is an example of expert social proof, as it relies on someone your audience perceives as an expert in their niche to promote your brand.
In an influencer marketing strategy, you’re aiming for an influencer’s audience to see someone they trust working with your brand. If done naturally, the collaboration should appear authentic, and should communicate to the audience that you are a trusted brand that they should invest in.
For example, you might be a gaming chair company who wants to target your new pink chair to female gamers. You could collaborate with an Instagram influencer who specializes in cute clothing and culture, and give them one of the chairs to promote and review. By asking them to associate it with the lifestyle they portray, you are able to communicate to the audience that your chair is the ideal choice for someone interested in pursuing something similar. If your audience is interested in this kind of lifestyle, and the review makes your chair seem like the perfect accessory, then it is likely that they will consider your brand.
The connection between the influencer’s lifestyle and the audience’s interest in replicating it is how social proof works here. The audience sees your product as part of an ideal lifestyle, and attempts to replicate that behavior.
Creating an influencer marketing strategy is the easiest way to spread positive recommendations of your brand. At Game Marketing Genie, we think that it’s something worth considering in your marketing plan. Read more about why we believe it’s the future of marketing here.
You don’t need to rely on the professionals to promote your game. Whether you realize it or not, the way your game is being reviewed by its players is making an impact on the way people choose to interact with you.
BrightLocal found that the average customer reads 10 reviews before they feel that they are able to trust the business. They also found that 91% of consumers mentioned that positive reviews would make them more likely to use a business. This makes sense - you wouldn’t go to a restaurant that had bad ratings, would you?
Let’s look at an example. You’re wanting to find out more information about buying sunscreen that will be good for your upcoming trip. You research two that you’ve heard of before, and find that one has a lot of good reviews and another that has mixed ratings. If these are your only options, which one would you purchase? If you’re like most people, you’ll pick the sunscreen that is best rated. After all, if the first sunscreen was a good product it would have better reviews, right?
These reviews can be very valuable for your game. BrightLocal’s statistics show that people are probably researching you before deciding to become a customer, so you need to use these reviews to market yourself.
Use any positive reviews you have for social proof in your marketing. Try featuring reviews that paint you in a positive light on your website, or give them a shout out on social media. Don’t forget that your responses to any reviews will also affect how potential players perceive your game and company, as a high 97% of consumers also read businesses’ replies as well.
You want an attractive brand image, so use what you’ve got to your advantage and work to paint yourself in a positive light.
You know that trust is essential to get people to invest in your brand. But sometimes you need to prove that you’re worth investing in. Awards are an amazing form of social proof, as they show that you’re a recognized company within your industry.
If you’ve received an award that is a seal of approval within your industry then it is a valuable addition to list on your platforms that your audience visits. It reveals that there is a group with high authority who believes in your brand, and can be more powerful than reviews by players alone.
Also consider mentioning brands you have collaborated with before on your platforms to demonstrate your level of trust amongst other well-known platforms.
Social media is your key to marketing success!
With the right strategy, social media can make your brand stand out among the masses and help you grow into a leading figure in your industry. Get all the tips you need to know in our ultimate guide here: Your Must-Have Guide for Social Media Marketing!
Using the power of recommendations can be an incredibly strong way to communicate to your audience that you are a brand that’s trusted and worth investing in. Social proof proves that people are more likely to follow what the crowd is saying about a brand, and you should be using this to your advantage.
It can be difficult to generate positive recommendations, especially if you are a small gaming studio. As we mentioned earlier, you should be using any positive reviews or awards you’ve already received to encourage your audience's trust. However, you should also be considering investing in influencer marketing to give your brand the edge to convince your audience to convert. Let the marketing strategy experts handle your marketing needs while you focus on your game.
Want to know more? Contact us today!