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10% True Believers To Persuade A Group

Richard Millington
Richard Millington

Founder of FeverBee

Shortly after the 2011 Arab uprisings, scientists at Renseelaer Polytechnical Institute developed 3 computer models to identify the tipping point where a minority belief becomes the majority opinion.

In the first model, each person was connected to every other person on the network. In the second model, a small number of individuals were connected to a larger number of people (the influencer model). In the third model, each person had roughly the same number of connections.

The scientists then dropped some ‘true believers’ (people committed to unique views) into these networks.

As these true believers interact with those who held traditional views, they gradually (and then rapidly) shifted opinion of the entire network.

This study showed that the ‘connected’ notes (I.e. The influencers) had very little impact upon changing majority opinion. The biggest impact was the number of people in the existing network who held that opinion.

When 10% of the network held the opinion, it tipped over into the majority opinion.1

If you want to influence people, you have to first develop those ‘true believers’, then place them among a group of undecideds. That means first nurturing the true believers (usually personal friends), then putting them among a group likely to be receptive to the idea. You also need them to be in a context where they can talk about the topic.

Almost all models of group persuasion ignore the science.

Influential people (i.e. your CEO) aren’t going to change the opinions of the group. Opinion changes when you place a small group of true believers among a group of undecideds.

If you want to persuade a group, you need to persuade 10% of the group on an individual, one-to-one, basis first. Remember that when you’re trying to make a group take action.


One True Believer Isn’t Enough

This is probably the problem you face with every event you attend.

You attend an event in your sector and come away inspired, motivated, and brimming with ideas you can apply.

But you can’t implement these ideas by yourself.

You have to persuade colleagues. Your motivation crashes into reality and dissipates. Then your boss drops new priorities on your desk.

This isn’t the exception. This is the norm for most events we attend. Even the best ideas are wasted if we can’t make them happen.

We’re going to try and tackle this today.


Creating True Believers

I want to try something this SPRINT (which, honestly, might not work well).

We’ve created a ‘Bring Your Team’ ticket.

We want to encourage you to bring other members of your team/company so you begin with ‘true believers’.

These are people that will help you stay motivated, support you to make the changes you need to grow the community, and persuade others that need persuading.

The Bring A Team ticket means you can:

  • Bring up to 5 people (if you’ve already purchased a ticket, we’ll credit this purchase towards the ticket – just reply to this e-mail).
  • Access to our exclusive growth club community ($1200 per person)
  • Access to our FeverBee course ($720)
  • Access all the videos from our 2014 FeverBee SPRINT event ($140)

The easiest way to convince your boss, team, or colleagues is to bring them.

You get a lot of extra bonuses and, perhaps most importantly, you get to spend an entire day out of the office together thinking about fundamental, structural, ways you can improve your community.

We have 4 * Bring A Team tickets available at 1,120 USD

You can get your ticket here.

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