More on Influencers


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In my earlier post on Influencers, I made the point that there is more to ‘social marketing’ than just the few who are at the centre of networks of connected customers.

I also commented along the same lines in response to James Chefkoff’s posting on ‘Why 500 is So Significant’ on his Modern Marketing blog. James’ quite valid point is that as you look to scale-up a social network, the first 500 active members are critical to building interest in the network sufficient to make it ‘tip’ and become successful.

My equally valid counterpoint was that there is more to successful network building than just concentrating on the early adopters; that the network itself needs to be constructued in such a way that it is worth participating in itself, with or without early adopters doing lots of the initial heavy influencing.

Reality of course is that although social networks are everywhere, these are relatively early days for the study of social networks. We are only just starting to understand the dynamics of social networks and what that means for social marketing. Early adopters and influencers (they are not the same thing) are clearly important. But so are the messages that spread across the networks. And so are the susceptibility of the networks to those messages. And so are lots of other things. Influencers are central to social networks, but there is much more to social networks than just influencers.

What do you think? Are social networks critical to your company’s marketing efforts? Or are they just an interesting curiosity?

Post a comment and get the conversation going.

Graham Hill

Graham Hill (Dr G)
Business Troubleshooter | Questioning | Thoughtful | Industrious | Opinions my own | Connect with me on LinkedIn


  1. Hi Graham,

    As you said on James’ post, we are all singing from the same songsheet. It is however worth distinguishing between early adopters and influencers. Early adopters often have a high proportion of influencers amongst them and that cutting edge knowledge is what makes them tick and makes it worth the pain of being an early adopter.

    I don’t think that early adopters necessarily have to go on to become the key influencers in a community. I imagine they’re often washed out by the people who go on to form the core. This (and the 95:5 rule) are just as true in real life as they are in web-communities. Think of any voluntary group and it’s always one or five people organising 20-100 people.

    Peter Nixey – Webkitchen

  2. Hi Graham

    I have just stumbled across this post and read it in full, its interesting to now look at this in 2018 and see how heavily social media has influenced everyday life.

  3. Hello,

    You are right Graham, that social networks are everywhere and they became the part of our life. people mostly preferred to interact anyone through social media. cause its remoteness. and lots of people made their career on social media like as an influencer. and the country like India, the no. of web influencer are increasing


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