Psycho: when was the influencer born?

The concept of influencer seems recent to us, having appeared with the advent of social networks. However, it was in 1940 (yes yes!) that Paul Lazarsfeld was the first to tackle this concept in The People's Choice. In the middle of the presidential campaign in the USA, he set out to “discover people” by following a group of 600 voters from Erie County in Ohio. During this investigation, he demonstrates that voting is not only an individual choice but that there are variables linked to the individual's social network. We find that friendship networks and family backgrounds are generally homogeneous in their political choices. For the first time, opinion leaders are evoked in a theory of interpersonal influence. Their characteristics would be a strong awareness of the media and an ability to reformulate political issues in daily exchanges. They therefore have a role of intermediary, facilitator, relay. One step is from…

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