CONTAGIOUS: WHY THINGS CATCH ON – Jonah Berger

Book can be found here https://amzn.to/2J105B3 (this is an Amazon associate link which earns us commission to keep things going) summary and notes below:

Contagious combines groundbreaking research with powerful stories. Learn how a luxury steakhouse found popularity through the lowly cheese-steak, why anti-drug commercials might have actually increased drug use, and why more than 200 million consumers shared a video about one of the seemingly most boring products there is: a blender. If you’ve wondered why certain stories get shared, e-mails get forwarded, or videos go viral, Contagious explains why, and shows how to leverage these concepts to craft contagious content. This book provides a set of specific, actionable techniques for helping information spread—for designing messages, advertisements, and information that people will share. Whether you’re a manager at a big company, a small business owner trying to boost awareness, a politician running for office, or a health official trying to get the word out, Contagious will show you how to make your product or idea catch on.

The key idea within berger’s book is the 6 principles of virality which he discussed throughout the chapters, they are listed below

6 PRINCIPLES OF VIRALITY:

1-SOCIAL CURRENCY: Does it make the person talking about your thing, smart, cool instead of dumb etc
Inside a newly released soda bottle there was an interesting fact inside the cap (like a fortune cookie approach)  which got the drinker telling their friends about the fact and hence promoting the drink which increase chances they’d buy it also.

2- TRIGGERS : What symbols or actions will pop up to make people have the excuse or reason to talk about you? A gaming system of sorts ?
Examples include…
– frequent flyer programs
– if creating a motto that’s easy to remember make it link up to a practical activity, “ each and every tray should eat 5 fruit and veggies every day”
– create an advertisement that centres around the use or purchase of the innovation. Instead of showing how a man falls down in bathroom and so needs a bath mat, show instead how a person shopping sees bath mats and realises they need to buy it, remembering the night before they nearly fell down.
– things that evoke anger and anxiety are most likely to be shared, controversy sells
– arousal is what leads people to share, it could be positive or negative but its what leads to that sharing

3- EMOTION: Make what your doing something new and surprising, what no one’s thought about before

4- PUBLIC : Make your innovation observable otherwise people wont be able to see it, hence create social pressure to check it out. Online or via mobile or a well placed advertisement

5- PRACTICAL VALUE: How is it going to help them right this minute FAST, too much info means you need to stand out, always ask is it useful for end person?

6- STORIES: Mould what your doing into a story that people can share and related to easily

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *