Social currency: How Proctor & Gamble Are Manipulating Your Friends to Manipulate You

Wod Of Mouth

Some people have learnced how to exchange social standing for monetary gain. Now, there is nothing wrong with that as when you see an engaging salesperson, with a vibrant personality, leading the company in closed transactions. Hey, that is what they are suppose to do. The people being “sold” know how this works and they elect to buy the service or product from the salesperson of their choice.

Social currency is established over time with trust and compassion. You develop a following of friends who believe what you say.

John H. Clippinger writes that social currency and reputation go hand in hand. He cites eBay, “In eBay, for example, a seller acquires a reputation score given to them by their buyers. Different reputation score levels not only make it more likely that others will do business with them, but it confers a certain status among other members of the eBay community.”

The Dark Side of Our Friendship

Proctor & Gamble claims to have mastered the technique for getting you to talk about their products. Umm, it’s called money. Smart guys, those P&G fellows.

Magnoticism writes, “Capturing Connectors Fueling the Tremor engine are the 250,000 teens that P&G calls “connectors.” One major insight from P&G’s initial research, Knox says, is that Tremor’s connectors “exist throughout the product adoption curve.” That sets them apart from trendsetters or early adopters, those consumer warhorses of Tipping Point fame. Although trendsetters and early adopters are quick to glom on to new ideas and products, they are not necessarily avenues for successful word of mouth; in fact, some trendsetters might be cul-de-sacs of buzz, hoarding secrets that distinguish them from peers. A connector, by contrast, is anyone—even the last person to find out about something—who always taps the nearest shoulder to point out a new purchase or a cool song or TV show or movie. They are people with “really broad and deep social networks and a deep propensity to want to talk about ideas,” Knox says. “The first question connectors ask is, ‘Is this idea worth my advocacy?’ It’s their social currency on the line, so it has to be a product that they at least believe in.” – Steve Knox, CEO, Tremor “

Sis, Boom, Buy…


In the April 19th, 2007 edition of the Wall Street Journal, talks about P&G providing products at cheerleader camps and cheerleading events. “Putting in an appearance on the cheerleading circuit is becoming mandatory for marketers hoping to connect with teens through word-of-mouth marketing. These marketers, including P&G and PepsiCo Inc., recognize cheerleaders can be among the most popular people in high school, able to influence opinions on deodorant, shampoos or other products. Many cheeerleaders have told her friends about products she’s seen at cheerleader camp.

“Marketing to cheerleaders is “a unique way to get involved with an influential set of our consumers,” says Dave Knox, teen external relations manager for P&G Beauty. P&G estimates there are about 14 million cheerleaders in the U.S. between the ages of 13 and 20.”

Word of Click

Obviously, here I would like you to tell your friends if you found this article informative.


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