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Social Networks: 10 Contagious Attributes

There are 6.6 Billion people all around the planet forming a gigantic social network. At some point somewhere in this network, an idea is cooked up in the brain of one person, or sometimes a few people  – a node or a small cluster of them.

From there the spread begins. This is Social Networking.

The power of an idea that springs from love, passion and energy is hard to contain. The book “Cold Mountain” started with this embedded.

It is a story told by a father to his son about his great-great-uncle, a Confederate soldier who deserted from the army while recovering from his battle wounds. The son finally wrote a 449 page book from this thin outline. The book finally found it’s way to a professor of social psychology who included it as one of the options for a graduate-student project.

Typical communication in the age of mass media start with two steps

  1. Mass Media to Network Hubs
  2. Network Hubs to the rest of the population

But “Buzz” refuses to follow neat patterns. Cold Mountain’s buzz didn’t start from the traditional marketers text book .

So what made the book spread? What were the contagious attributes?

  1. A tremendous amount of energy and passion behind the book from the author to the publisher.
  2. There is no substitute for good writing
  3. Time and money put behind a product. ..the publisher spent hours walking the shelves at Barnes and Noble writing down the names of 150 authors who they felt would be interested in in reading “Cold Mountain”
  4. Your believers back you every step of the way
  5. Every one in the chain of influence put in time and effort to promote it
  6. It was on the best seller list – creating more momentum
  7. Trust – Buzz travels with less friction on channels built with trust (eg ..this is a comment I recieved today on my blog ” For me I only follow links that have great descriptions about what to expect when clicked. Like I clicked on your tweet about this survey that was retweeted by someone I follow.”
  8. Credibility- no matter how much credibility one has has the best buzz comes from third parties.. not the company putting out the product itself.
  9. The Word of mouth is passed on authentically- it is un-coerced
  10. Recognition from your peers – in this case other publishers

So does your blog, book or ebook have contagious attributes?

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