We have seen before on Influence & marketing (1) that influence is more complex than it seems and deserves a much more detailed approach in order to distinguish influence from all of the other influence-like behaviors like for example homophily.
Now, let’s apply this to one of my huge passions: Marketing. After all, marketing and psychology are much alike. Is influence really what is affecting a purchase decision? We should differentiate between behavioral changes and behavioral tendencies.
How much influence is there in a purchase decision? That’s a tough question. For starters, we should know the effect of recommendation above the initial probability of purchasing. In other words, what is the added value of influence on my previous probability of purchase decision? will it have any effect?
This problematic can be solved by the use of a person’s social data, but where can we find all the social data about someone, where he indicates all his passions and interests? Would he be willing to share correct information? Well enough rhetoric questioning: You can use social media.
By analyzing the data obtained from social media, we can separate (or distinguish a little better) influence from other confounding factors such as homophily and measure what we really want to measure (it may sound obvious saying “measure what we really want to measure” but if you had a slight idea of the amount of statistical validity problems, you would recognize it is not a trivial matter).… Read the rest of “Influence and Marketing (2)”