There’s science behind word of mouth, according to Jonah Berger, author and associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. Science that can’t guarantee you a viral hit, but can help you get more people to share your stuff. In fact, Jonah says it’s about much more than being the next YouTube sensation, pulling off a crazy marketing stunt, or having a sexy product (and it’s not just luck, either).

In this WHYY Public Media podcast, Jonah talks about how his book, Contagious: Why Things Catch On, applies hard science to something difficult to define — why word of mouth spreads from person to person. His research suggests that understanding why people share is much more important than going after the next “viral hit.”

In this podcast, you’ll also learn more about:

  • Which emotions encourage people to share
  • Word of mouth success through STEPPS: Social Currency, Triggers, Emotion, Public, Practical Value, and Stories
  • How social influence, culture, and visibility affects word of mouth

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