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The in-group influence

By Shriram Venkatraman, on 13 March 2013

Photo by epSos.de (Creative Commons)

Photo by epSos.de (Creative Commons)

Several cross-cultural strategy consultants stress that, in some countries, people are influenced by their “in-group/inner circle”, which mainly comprises of friends and relatives. They advise new companies to go through this in-group circle when attempting to influence their target sector. This can also be understood as “friends” influencing the target sector more than any other group. Facebook’s strategy on giving users recommendations of things/products or websites by “friends” has seen an amplified effect/impact with their revenue generation. Further, with brands and applications posting on behalf of a user who maybe an influential in-group personality for some, the strategy seems to be a marketable option generalising the impact of friends in all countries and specifically in those where an in-group effect is maximum. An aspect to look out for might be to check if these in-group influencing economies are digitally driven and use social networking sites. Furthermore, it looks like a lot more needs to be written and researched on how recommendations of “friends” (as in-groups) work for online companies and their associated products.