group influence in social media, Network Structure and Group Influence in Social Media

Photo by JESSICA TICOZZELLI from Pexels

When you take the step to become a social media influencer, you have to stand on your tiptoes as it’s a field that requires constant attention. The use of social networks and group influence can be your startup to a better number, and it can also lead to a consistent, loyal audience. It keeps a good profile of your social media marketing and can ground your base as a social media marketer.

What are Social Networks?

Online community groups tend to make up social networks. Social networks are often based on common characteristics shared by users, such as interests, location, age group, occupation, and such. They can be described as a set of nodes, which points to a network at which pathways intersect, meaning one or more related things connect them. 

Social networks are based on people, feedback, and reach of the network. Social networks are used for the exchange of information and resources amongst their members and rely heavily upon:

  • Attendance 
  • Participation 
  • Interaction
  • Equality 
  • Behavioral Standards
  • Social Objects

 How are Social Networks Structured?

The makeup of the overall social network is defined by the social network structure it follows. Several factors are taken into consideration when structuring the overall makeup of a social network, such as: 

  • To know how connected someone is on social media on average, the density or number of connections hence plays a vital role.
  • To know how close together you and other representatives are on social media on an average, the path length plays the second most vital role.
  • To know about the amount of equality within the network, degree distribution plays the third most vital role in structuring social networks.
  • Social inequality is common and usually arises when we decide to invest our time and effort into certain connections while ignoring others. They are likely to give us more return in the form of attention or interaction. Hence we find the formation of scale-free networks.
  • Sometimes it is observed that an individual or group that already has a lot of success on social media tends to keep getting more and more without the newer ones getting a chance. This creates major centralized hubs within the network called Preferential Attachments.

Community Structures and Online Communities:

Social Network Structures tend to result in community structures and the formation of online communities. Online communities are formed by a group of people who come together for a specific purpose. They are generally guided by community policies and use internet access for virtual communication via different social media platforms. 

Community structures are formed by common interests within the community members, such as location, likes, and age group. Finding a community structure in a social media network is essential. These community members collectively give value to social media as community members form connections and engage with others online to benefit businesses using social media as a marketing tool.  

Online communities use conversation to interact on social media networks, which, though, are digital conversations; they play a vital role in establishing these online connections. They experience interaction within a computer-generated environment. The community members decide what is to be given importance, such as what content they want to see more, rather than the publishers creating this comment. Hence democracy is established within an online community. 

Group Influence in Social Media:

Group Influence generally refers to those people who are considered ‘leaders’ or have the ability to influence those around them. In social media, they can control what the community members like, interact with, or in what they get involved. They may be activists or trendsetters that generally have an impact on those on social media. 

To be one of those to have a group influence on social media, you will need to understand:

  • What people generally tend to buy is usually influenced by other people or groups with which they may interact.
  • To be consistent with what other people do, people tend to buy or use products towards which everyone else is also gravitating.
  • Consumer decisions are generally based on group contexts.
  • Rather than general advertising techniques, word of mouth tends to work better.
  • The use of social media can accelerate word-of-mouth communication.
  • Social media can drastically change the company and Consumer interaction.

There are two types of group influence on social media:

  1. Dissociative Group: If a brand or product has some form of negative association associated with it, consumers will avoid interacting with that brand or buying those products. People tend to stay away from dissociative groups.
  2. Aspirational Group: This group has a good impact on social media, and it leads more consumers to a brand or product. This group generally is made up of celebrities or influencers that are supported by a large number of people. If a person likes that promotes something, consumers will be more attracted to it. 

Hence, we can see the formation of network structures and online communities, which play a vital role in social media. Group influence is also considered important as knowing which group to influence to get consumers will make your social media marketing easier.

Need more local marketing tips? Check out our entire Guide to Local Marketing for Real Estate Professionals