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Why You’d Jump Off A Bridge If Everyone Else Was | A Lesson in Social Proof

would you jump off a bridge
Yesterday, I read a story about some teenagers in Washington state jumping off a tall bridge that runs across the Columbia River.

Judging by the pictures, I’d say it’s a good 50 feet from the bridge to the water.

The news article says, “Officials soon learned the kids were just trying to cool off by jumping into the water.”

Yeah… I don’t buy it.

As a father of six kids between the ages of 11 and 23, let me tell you the real reason these teens were risking serious injury and cold-water shock…

They were trying to look cool, not cool off.

I guarantee this is what happened: One of the teens thought it would be awesome to cannonball off the bridge.

The rest of them, wanting to fit in and keep their “cool kid” cards, followed suit.

I mean, let’s be real.

If they wanted to cool off in the water, they could have—you know—walked into it directly from the shore.

Instead, they dove into it from five basketball hoops high.

Now, if you’re thinking, “Man, teenagers are dumb,” know two things:

  1. You’re right.
  2. While YOU aren’t dumb, you’re guilty of the teenagers’ same “follow the leader” behavior.

Simply put, not much holds more power and influence over a person’s decisions than social proof.


You might not jump off a bridge because your friends are doing it, but you—like all seven billion humans on this planet—base many of your decisions on what others are doing.

Social proof is why we wear certain clothes, drive certain cars, and eat at certain restaurants. If we see enough people partaking in something, we want a piece of that pie, too.

That’s just the way that gray lump of matter between our eyes is hardwired.

This is why good online reviews—and lots of them—are required for you to attain true success as a contractor.

Don’t believe me? Consider this…

New research shows 90% of people now read online reviews before contacting a contractor.

Out of those folks, 86% (!!!) of them are influenced by a single negative review.

I’m no math whiz, but that means virtually every person who considers contacting you looks at your online reviews first.

And of those people, virtually every person is going to think twice about contacting you if you have a bad online review.

Simply put, people don’t want to waste their money and feel like chumps. That’s why a bad review of your company will make a larger impression on them than a good one. It’s Psychology 101.

Do you know the best way to stop the effects of bad reviews?

A)    Having an avalanche of great reviews to offset the few negative ones.

B)    Not have any negative reviews, period.

MYM Online Reputation Management (ORM) can help you achieve both.

Our Online Reputation Management solution contains a sophisticated customer-review funnel that generates a wealth of positive reviews for your company.

On top of that, it can also intercept negative reviews before they get posted for the world to see.

This gives you the opportunity to resolve the unsatisfied customer’s issue, potentially preventing them from leaving bad online feedback about you.

MYM ORM also monitors 170+ review websites. This includes the “big boys” like Yelp, Google, and Facebook, as well as local review websites of your choosing.

You’ll be alerted anytime your customers leave online reviews about you—good or bad. You’ll no longer have to fear if there’s a hidden bad review somewhere out there that’s hurting your reputation.

Go ahead, take the plunge into ORM with your fellow contractors.

The water’s fine.

P.S. How much do you think 750 glowing online reviews would increase your sales? And how the heck do you even get 750 online reviews? I’ll let you know tomorrow.


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