The Proof Is In The Numbers: Why Museums Should Care About Social Proof

Colleen Dilenschneider of ‘Know Your Own Bone’ recently wrote about how important social media is to your visitors. Around 52% of visitors to cultural organizations use social media onsite — and it has a positive impact on their satisfaction levels.

So does using social media onsite increase visitor satisfaction, or do visitors who are more satisfied with their experience feel more inclined to use social media? Probably a little of both.

This plays into the concept of social proof, or the idea that social media can play a huge part in driving your audience to your museum.

Social proof is powerful — crowds don’t keep you away; they have the opposite effect. Think of it as an unspoken word-of-mouth. The same thinking goes online and on your social media channels.

Try these easy ways of adding social proof online and on-site at your museum:

Testimonial examples from our website, for our Bachelorette Tours.

Ratings, Reviews & Testimonials

Objective reviews and testimonials are a way to get a view from someone outside of your museum. Sure, you think your museum is amazing, the collection stunning, and your programming is innovative — but it means more coming from an outside party.

Customer reviews in particular can be crucial. When’s the last time you made a meaningful purchase on Amazon or any e-tailer without glancing at the reviews? Be sure to turn on this feature on your museum’s Facebook.

Influencer Endorsements

Put social media to work for you! Learn how to harness the power of influencers and you can get 10x or even 10,000x your normal visibility on social media. Next time you have an event, try inviting local influencers or bloggers to attend and post about their experience. Want to know how to do it? Check out our best tips.

From Mount Vernon, The Virginia Zoo, and the Mariner’s Museum

Badges & Logos

Belong to an association, accredited, or even have earned a badge on another rating site? Show it off! These are quick visual ways to show off your credentials.

Social Connections & Counts

Another easy way to add social proof to your site is by adding social counters. These not only allow users to easily share your content to their own social media channels, but the corresponding number of shares allow for others to see how many people also have endorsed it.

If a friend shares something, the program, site, or experience comes pre-vetted, and you’re more willing to see what it’s all about.

Want more info on using social media in your museum? Check these out:


This article first appeared on on September 22, 2017

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