Social influence is seen in social media every day. Given that, people are influenced by the people around them. As can be seen, they are likely to do what society deems correct or appropriate. For instance, when individuals move to a new town, they are then likely to change their behavior to what the locals consider appropriate. In fact, they may start to use more spice in their food or watch soccer more often. Therefore, influencing is a great way to market products. If people you admire use a particular product, you are bound to try it too.
What is Social Influence?
Social influence then refers to how a person will change how they behave depending on their current social environment. Consequently, they will change their ways. Sometimes even without realizing it, they change to fit in with a new group of people.
Another key point is this behavior modification can occur at any age. It’s not just something that teenagers do due to peer pressure. For example, adults modify their choice of products, political ideas, and people they associate with depending on the social environment.
Types of Social Influence
In essence, there are three types of social influence: normative, informational, and conformity social influences.
Normative involves changing your beliefs or ideas to be liked by a social group or to fit in. As can be seen, the new behavior you choose does not have to be accurate. For example, normative influence is peer pressure among teenagers. In fact, a teenager wants to be accepted by the “cool” kids. Therefore they will start smoking, among other habits.
As a result, the desire to fit in is natural. Marketing companies can use normative social influence to increase sales. This is done by appealing to their clients’ desire to fit in. It will make you feel uncomfortable being the only person not using the products. As a result, you will buy them too.
Informational is guided by new information that you receive from other people. In this case, you will have accepted the new information. You view it as trustworthy and modify your beliefs, thoughts, and behavior. Given these points, this influence is powered by the fact that people want to be correct.
For example, if your biology professor tells you that you need to peel apples before you eat them, you may change your views because they are a credible source. In short, when you go to a fancy restaurant for the first time, you will look at what other diners are doing and copy that.
Conformity involves individuals altering their behavior to be accepted by a group. In any event, you may also conform to impress someone new in your life. In this social influence, you can change how you behave without changing your beliefs. An example of conformity can be becoming a vegetarian due to peer influence. You desire your new friends not to think you want to hurt animals.
Are you ready to use social influence tactics to build and grow your business?
Savvy marketers understand the power and impact that social influence provides.
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