Can group influence cheat your own thoughts?

I have never been one of those girls who follow too much what everybody else does. I have always cared about other´s opinions but it has never been the only truth for me. I think that during the past few years group influence has become stronger and stronger and everybody is trying to follow fashion more than beChristian Crandallfore. I even noticed this thing in myself this year. When the spring came you saw flower prints everywhere. I have never been a fan of the flower-printed clothes but when the summer ended I noticed that my wardrobe was full of flower-styled clothes. What the hell had happened I thought! For the first time I experienced how powerful the group influence could be. I started to wonder where this all began.

Many researchers have studied how the latest fashion, ideas and slang words spread within in a group. People who innovate something have to be somehow isolated from the rest of the group because being too much with the group, makes it difficult to think differently from everyone else, says Christian Crandall, a professor of social psychology at the University of Kansas. “There´s a freedom to innovate” and it comes from isolation, Crandall says. Although the innovator is isolated, a group usually adopts their ideas because it is the way for the group to keep its bond. The trend could be anything, each however tells something about their identity.

Power of the fitness boom

For companies all this is an opportunity because it is obvious that group influence and its huge power could bring a lot of additional income if they can just use it right. It is important that they find these gaps in the market and create something that supports the trend. I think that today´s example here could be this fitness boom, which has spread like a fire. I noticed that many firms started campaigns which were much sportier than before and food commercials also started to look healthier than ever. Every other food commercials started to advertise food or snacks which have less sugar and more protein.  A good commercial wile!

Even I started to follow this trend and went to a personal trainer who made a fitness program for me. Even though I´m interested in sports I wonder if I had ever come along with all this fitness enthusiasm without the huge group influence. I think not. So I think that the stronger the fashion phenomenon is, the more a company can benefit from it and get people involved.

Good for them, but what about for us?opinion

Group influence is good for companies but is it also for us? Nowadays everybody is so used to walking with the mass and doing like everybody else that they don´t even notice that sometimes their thoughts are not their own. For companies this is a good moment to do different kinds of campaigns and develop something new by using group influence but for us this is a challenge. How to hold on to our own thoughts without mixing the medias´ and other people´s opinions with our own?

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4 Responses to Can group influence cheat your own thoughts?

  1. kristianharju says:

    This text was entertaining and easy to read. Your examples are really good 😀 It’s true that we all are used to be part of the group and that influences our thinking in many ways.

  2. mirapaakkinen says:

    Hi Heini! In my opinion your post was interesting and I think you had a great point of view about group influence. It was very easy to read and also follow your own thoughts. Good job!:)

  3. leotynkkynen says:

    Excellent points Heini! I admit that I am guilty of group influence, i need to change my habits! 🙂

  4. nikonylund says:

    Nice post! That fitness boom is really good topic. Nicely written and good examples! Your own thoughts gave an interesting view. Keep posting!

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