In a changing market, buyers can no longer rely on social proof and need to have the confidence to go out on their own.
Social proof, also known as informational social influence, is a psychological phenomenon where people depend on the actions of others to reflect correct behaviour for a given situation. Social proof tends to occur in social situations where people are unable to determine the appropriate mode of behaviour, so an individual will rely on surrounding people to possess more knowledge about the situation. Put simply, it’s the, “I’ll have what she’s having” motto.
In 2016 and 2017, we saw dozens of buyers join the registration queues at our auctions, quietly despising their competition but at the same time revelling with confidence in it. After all, if twenty other people want to buy the property, it must be right, right?
In 2018 the numbers at auctions are down and therefore doubt has crept into the minds of buyers and they are left asking, “where’s everyone else?” In a new world where social proof drives what we eat, what we wear, where we holiday and what we try next, it’s hard for some people to make any decisions without it.
Right now, it can be the big break that buyers have been looking for. The trick is for buyers to do their homework thoroughly and be confident in their own knowledge source. Forget about what others are saying, be your own advisor, trust yourself and create your own social proof.
Because next year if the market goes up, everyone will be asking “Why didn’t I buy last year?” And that’s the social proof in the pudding, right there.