Oct 14, 2014

Here’s an interesting read. It reminds me of a paper I wrote years ago in grad school on group polarization, a theory that says people with similar views on a controversial issue will become more extreme when they discuss that issue with someone who has a similar point of view. The thinking behind that is that if you’re pro-GMO, or anti-gun, or pro-marijuana legalization, for example, you are not only going to respond positively to people who share that view, but you also will both become (perhaps subconsciously) a bit more extreme just to show your commitment.

As PR folks, we know too well that influencing people’s attitudes and opinions can be tricky business, but it is good to know there are some pretty predictable behavior patterns that, when understood, can be very helpful in our efforts to influence them.