This may not come as a shock, but new research suggests that, yes, our friends are more influential than so-called “influencers” like bloggers.
According to MediaPost,
…a new study from Canadian research firm Pollara, self-described social media users put far more trust in friends and family online than in popular bloggers, or strangers with 10,000 MySpace “friends.”
Of more than 1,100 adults polled in December, nearly 80% said they were very or somewhat more likely to consider buying products recommended by real-world friends and family, while only 23% reported being very or somewhat likely to consider a product pushed by “well-known bloggers.”
But what if your friend happens to be a “well-known blogger”?
When Bryan swings by the office between conferences — as he did this morning, after speaking at eMetrics Summit last week in Toronto — there’s always some new website, product, blog or book he’s recommending. This time around, he had a stack of books. “Pick one,” he said. So I grabbed a copy of Evgenii “Geno” Prussakov’s Online Shopping Through Consumers’ Eyes.
“It’s a quick read,” Bryan insisted. “Lots of great research in there.”
I haven’t read it yet, but the first page I flipped to had a chart, illustrating that “86.6% of online users would actually follow recommendation links/advice sent to them by their friends and peers.”
Before I had a chance to share that with Bryan, he was already onto the next thing.
“Have you seen TripIt.com yet,” he asked. “It’s brilliant. You can upload your entire trip itinerary — not just flights, but everything — and email it or text it out to friends and family in one step.”
Sure enough, I put down the book and went to TripIt.com to check it out. (Sorry, Bryan, but I researched it because you’re a friend, not because you’re a “well-known blogger.” )
UPDATE: More interesting stuff on this topic from MediaPost.