Brand proof points are increasing in importance as people look for more authenticity in marketing messages. After being bombarded by hundreds of product claims day after day, we’ve become jaded. According to a 2015 study by Nielsen, we prefer to rely on our own experiences, doing business with brands we know, like, and trust.
And when we find a company we like, we tell others. So, the lesson is clear. Instead of saturating the airwaves with marketing messages, should we marketers instead be focusing our efforts on proving our brand and product claims to build trust, encourage repeat buyers and grow loyal brand advocates?
Tried and tested proof points include, references, customer testimonials, certification, awards, proprietary research, trial feedback, unique technology features, product reviews, statistics (market share validation, NPS etc), quotes from industry influencers, third party approvals, free trials, social proof etc.
Infographic – 42 brand proof points to check out
I just stumbled upon this great infographic which I wanted to share, as I think it’s a really useful reference for identifying proof points. It shows over 40 different types of proof that you can use to back up the propositions or claims you are making in your marketing messaging, so provides plenty of inspiration for all types of business.
Remember to choose the elements that will most appeal to your specific target audience (e.g. qualified facts and figures for finance folk) and to include a combination of emotional and rational evidence. The best proof points combine both (e.g. a customer testimonial telling their own story, explaining how your product or service has helped them personally, backed up by the hard facts about ROI), so get creative about how you communicate your stats and facts!
You’ll notice that third parties play a critical role in the creation of proof points. This reveals a common “human” characteristic — that we will accept a supposedly independent recommendation from another source as validation of a claim. Admittedly, it can be a real b*ll ache getting your customers and other third parties fired up to get involved in your proof point marketing activity, but it really will be worth the effort if you succeed.