18 April 2010

When Birds of a Feather Flock Together - #360DI Summit

Great things happen. At this weekend's 360 Digital Influence Black Belt Summit in Washington, D.C., 50+ strategists from N. America, the UK and France convened to discuss the latest trends shaping social media marketing and communications.

After two intense days of brainstorming, redstorming and thunderstorming, we all left a bit pooped. Chris Graves, Ogilvy PR global CEO, helped uplift the crowd with a thought piece on influence.

As a social media marketer, I spend day and night thinking about influence. How to inspire a group of consumers to learn about a product? Share a post with a friend? Write a positive review? Conducting business is contingent on the ability to influence potential customers. It's no surprise influence lies at the center of any social media program.

Graves touched on several interesting theories behind influence and human behavior:

1. The Strength of Weak Ties
"Individuals with few weak ties will be deprived of information from distant parts of the social system and will be confined to the provincial news and views of their close friends," (The Strength of Weak Ties: A Network Theory Revisited, by Mark Granovetter; download the full paper to read more).