If 50 million people say something foolish, it is still foolish – W. Somerset Maugham
Social proof always around people’s life but we do not recognize that. For instance: once the orchestral performance ends up, have you wonder why you start clapping and keeping a nice smile when those around you do even if you thought a performance was not that great? Thus, it is available to be called “social proof”. Social-identity which means that if our behavior is identical with people around us, the behaviour makes senses no matter how unreasonable it is. people’s behavior is largely shaped by the behaviors of others around them, especially those with whom they strongly identify
In 1950, psychologist Solomon Asch conducted a psychological experiment about how a person’s opinions are influenced when they are in a group.. The experiment involved five participants, four of whom were assistance with the experimenter. The task required participants to choose which line (either A, B, or C) is equal to the target line in length. In the first and second trial, all participants gave the correct answer, but in the final trial, the four members who were hired by the experimenter purposefully answered incorrectly. Testing whether the actions of the group would cause the subject deviate in his final decision making. The experiment revealed that 25% of participants never confirmed the answer given by Confederates. When participants were interviewed after the experiment, most of them stated that they did not believe their conforming answers, but they were afraid of being ridiculed or thought “peculiar” by the group. Thus, to cater to a majority of people’s “favorite”, sometimes we are forced to decide which is cater to the social public.
Advertising gets the most out of social proof to produce the best effect such as vehicle’s brands, cleaning products, facial care products. Consumers’ goods and brand relationships contribute to their social identities in ways that display the power of marketing and the value of brand equity. Furthermore, a product has a strong association with the social proof that personifies it, and exposure to that product, often through an advertisement, activates beliefs about this identity in consumers’ ideology. For instance: Apple’s products which gain enormous achievement in the world. Most products from Apple belong to high-end products, and the price is not suitable for ordinary people. However, Apple store stimulates consumers to buy their products by two factors.
1.) Personal factors
The products of Apple representing of high technique and fashion, it tells people that if you buy a product from Apple store, that means you are fashionable and in the mainstream. Thus, although Apple products are not cheap, customers are willing to purchase them because it could satisfy a well self-image.
2.) Situational factors
if peers around a customer are the fans of Apple’s products as a working tool, the customer is easy to be affected by those peers, which encourages that customer to purchase Apple’s products.
The reason why apple store won customers’ heart is that it helps the public to build up social proof. The Apple store tells people that fashion and high-class lifestyle are people’s identity if they purchase Apple’s products. Meanwhile, more peers purchase Apple’s products that motivate the customer to buy it because “Everyone got apple products, so I need to get one also. consumption of products associated with idealized people and can be used to communicate information about consumers including their personal values as well as a sense of identity established to express differences between social groups. Consumption of products associated with idealized people and can be used to communicate information about consumers including their personal values as well as a sense of identity established to express differences between social groups.
Thus, social proof is significant for commodity because they provides public’s self-identity as people keen to purchases apple products. Most people buy apple products mostly affected by social proof that “everyone got apple products, and I have to get one” to prove our social proof.