Everyone uses cognitive biases to speed up their decision making process. They are as old as decision making itself. The most common bias is "confirmation bias." It's a great description for the tendency of people to blindly accept evidence that supports their theory, but hold in great skepticism anything that undermines their theory. If you've ever read something in order to prove your point in an argument, then you're most likely guilty of confirmation bias.
Why does this matter to you? After all you're a marketer, an entrepreneur or a web guy, not a researcher. It's important because everyone is a decision maker at some point in their work and if you're not aware of the biases that effect you, then you can't be proactive in overcoming them.
A while back I hacked together a script to scrape Reddit users in order to see what the top submitters were doing. I took three top Reddit submitters: maxwellhill, qgyh2, and MndVirus and started compiling data from my scraper. Some of the things I looked at were:
- root domain
- time of day
I was expecting to find more commonalities than I did, which is why I am publishing this post, but some of the common denominators of their submissions are:
Because Disqus makes it easy for bloggers to setup Facebook Connect and other social media login systems on their sites, if Disqus or it's competitors start to see a large amount of new users, it's likely that Facebook Connect will also begin to see a very large increase in adoption. Therefore, the adoption of centralized commenting is likely to be one of many cornerstones for what Jeremiah Owyang calls the Era of Social Colonization, the period in which all sites become social.
There is a great article written by Naomi Dunford at Copyblogger titled "7 Ways You're Screwing Up Relationship Marketing". Naomi makes some excellent points about a common misconception people have regarding social media. Many people seem to think social media is the same thing as relationship marketing, or that brands need to follow the same rules as people to be successful in this medium. Well, it's not, and they don't. So, if social media isn't relationship marketing, what is it?