Digital Book Report – MARK 9057

***This is part of a project for my Social Media Marketing course, but have a read anyway if you are at all interested in learning how things go viral! It’s really quite interesting!

Digital Book Report

Contagious; why things catch on

By Jonah Berger


I chose to read Contagious by Jonah Berger. This book explains in great detail “why things catch on” laid out for us in STEPPS… a mnemonic used to illustrate the six principles in creating a viral campaign.


Social Currency: Will it make people seem cool or smart if they share this?


Triggers: Things that trigger a memory of a product; Top of the mind means tip of the tongue


Emotion: If it pulls on our heart strings and gives us the feels. “When we care, we share”


Public: The more public something is the more apt people are to share it “Built to show, built to grow”


Practical Value: how to’s get shared, useful content to help yourself and others “News you can use”


Stories: Great stories travel fast; people love a good storyteller and tend to share the tale with others




The examples in this novel are up to date and easily relatable. From the new Kit Kat campaign ‘Kit Kat and coffee’ to Rebecca Black’s annoyingly catchy song ‘Friday’ Jonah Berger is able to take all things relevant in todays society and show us why it became so popular and what steps they took to make it go viral.


This book shows the reader everything they already knew, but didn’t actually know. He walks us through how marketing teams use trigger words to spark something inside us to purchase a Kit Kat on our coffee break or want Cheerios for breakfast.


By using the six principals in any marketing situation we are shown we can make anything ‘Contagious’ I was so impressed with this book and look forward to using this knowledge going forward on my social media platforms!

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