Sumary of Study finds surprising source of social influence:
- Should you send the product to Kim Kardashian in the hope that she’ll love it and spread the word to her legions of Instagram followers?
- However, a forthcoming study in the journal Nature Communications finds that as prominent and revered as social influencers seem to be, in fact, they are unlikely to change a person’s behavior by example — and might actually be detrimental to the cause.
- So what strategy do we take if we want to use an online or real world neighborhood network to ‘plant’ a new idea?
- Is there anyone in a social network who is effective at transmitting new beliefs?
- To stimulate a shift in thinking, target small groups of people in the “outer edge” or fringe of a network.
- , a recent Annenberg graduate, studied over 400 public health networks to discover which people could spread new ideas and behaviors most effectively.
- They tested every possible person in every network to determine who would be most effective for spreading everything from celebrity gossip to vaccine acceptance.
- “Dozens of algorithms that are currently used by enterprises seeking to spread new ideas are based on the fallacy that everything spreads virally,” says Centola.