Thursday, December 21, 2006

"The Tipping Point" for network marketing companies

I am currently reading "The Tipping Point" by Malcolm Gladwell and have found it to be an enjoyable investigation of social phenomena such as epidemics, direct marketing, fashion trends and social behaviors. Gladwell starts by talking of Hush Puppies re-emergence as a trendy brand, then moves to the patterns of a syphilis epidemic in Baltimore, and then jumps to Paul Revere and how he was able to create a social phenomena through his personal charisma, and knowledge of key persons in each New England town. The point being that thanks to his status as a "Maven" and a "Connector" one man was able to kick-start the American Revolution using good, old-fashioned word-of-mouth.

"Paul Revere's ride is perhaps the most famous historical example of a word-of-mouth epidemic. A piece of extraordinary news traveled a long distance in a very short time, mobilizing an entire region to arms. Not all word-of-mouth epidemics are this sensational, of course. But it is safe to say that word-of-mouth is - even in this age of mass communications and multi-million dollar advertising campaigns - still the most important form of human communication. Think, for a moment, about the last expensive restaurant you went to, the last expensive piece of clothing you bought, and the last movie you saw. In how many of those cases was your decision about where to spend your money heavily influenced by the recommendation of a friend? There are plenty of advertising executives who think that precisely because of the sheer ubiquity of marketing efforts these days, word-of-mouth appeals have become the only kind of persuasion that most of us respond to anymore."
(Gladwell pg 32)

The Tipping Point is a fun read and really validates what we are doing with Family and Friends Financial. I give this book a shining endorsement for anyone interested in the workings of social phenomena. "The Tipping Point" is a New York Times #1 bestseller and should be readily available at your local bookstore or online.

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