Sunday, August 12, 2012

Seeding Strategies for Viral Marketing

A very nice application of social network analysis

"When information about an underlying social network is available, seeding on the basis of this information, as typically captured by sociometric data, seems promising (Van den Bulte 2010). Such a strategy can distinguish three types of people: "hubs," who are well-connected people with a high number of connections to others; "fringes," who are poorly connected; and "bridges," who connect two oth- erwise unconnected parts of the network. The sociometric measure of degree centrality captures connectedness within the local environment (for details, see the Web Appendix at, such that high- degree-centrality values characterize hubs, whereas low- degree-centrality values mark fringes. In contrast, the sociometric betweenness centrality measure describes the extent to which a person acts as a network intermediary, according to the share of shortest communication paths that pass through that person (see the Web Appendix). Thus, bridges earn high values on betweenness centrality measures."