In today’s world, firstly in communication, opinion leaders have fundamental importance. Believe or not, we usually get under influence by them, or refuse them without conscious. There too many studies about our listening attitudes toward “Opinion Leaders”. Briefly, we can consider some of them as a reference to understand this concept.
One of them is the Washington Post‘s study named “Opinion Leaders: Circle of Influence.” In this study, it examines Opinion Leaders as the filters of ideas and information. Also, it supports that “Each industry, issue, interest and ideology has its own opinion leaders. They are change agents and active media users. Opinion leaders engage with the media where their ideas are spread to the wider world of those who care about the industry, issue, interest or ideology.” You can reach the full study by clicking here.
Another study can be found by The Yale School of Management named “Do we listen to Opinion Leaders”. In this study, it examines and explains some researchs and empirical testing of Opinion Leader concept. Briefly; this study analyse the research in the summer of 2001 that the toymaker Hasbro launced a new handheld videogame called P-O-X. As part of the introduction of the game, Hasbro hired a marketing firm to create a vireal word-of-mouth campaign. Marketers used surveys to find the coolest kids in Chicago and then seeking to harness their influence. They gave those kids samples of the game to hand out to their friends. The campaign was a success. Because the cool kids love P-O-X and withing a few weeks Hasbro had sold one million units. You can reach the full study by clicking here.
Lastly, there is a basic video about how we should understand the the term of “Opinion Leader” in communication context. The video recorded by The University of Baltimore and Towson University Business Administration School. To watch the video, please click here.