Getting back at the Hyping Point


Seth Godin has a thoughtful response to the wonderful Fast Company story “The Un-Tipping Point” by Clive Thompson.

Unleashing the Ideavirus didn’t spread because ‘important’ people endorsed and promoted it. It spread because passionate people did.

One more reason not to obsess about the A list in any media category. Worry instead about people with passion and people with lots of friends. You need both for ideas to spread. That was Malcolm’s point all along.

There are many ways to interpret the story, which covers Duncan Watts’s research, which discounts the roles of the super-influentials that many marketers try to reach to make their products tip rapidly. My interpretation is that marketers often over-simplify the definition of an influential, not recognizing that different people will be influential for different types of ideas or products. For example, Slashdot is a hugely influential audience for open-source software. It’s almost irrelevant when you have a new digital audio player to sell. This level of nuance has been left out in most efforts to create an influentials strategy, and that’s why the Tipping Point isn’t the panacea marketers hoped it would be. Just my two cents, you should read the story.

Seth’s Blog: The Hyping Point


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