Jonah Berger

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Jonah Berger
Jonah Berger Headshot.jpg
Born Washington, D.C.
Alma mater Stanford University, Stanford Graduate School of Business
Occupation Writer, Professor[1]
Known for Contagious: Why Things Catch On

Jonah Berger is a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He is an expert on word of mouth, viral marketing, social influence, social contagion, and trends.[2] His 2013 book Contagious: Why Things Catch On is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller.[3]


Berger earned his Ph.D. in marketing from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and his B.A. from Stanford University in Human Judgment and Decision Making. His research frequently appears in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, Science, Harvard Business Review, MIT Sloan Management Review, Wired, Bloomberg Businessweek, The Atlantic, and The Economist. Berger writes regularly about psychology, marketing, and viral as a LinkedIn Influencer.[4]

Berger has worked with a variety of companies and organizations including Google,[3] Vanguard, General Motors, Facebook, Unilever, Estée Lauder, Microsoft, Progressive, Purina, LinkedIn, and General Mills.[5]



Contagious: Why Things Catch On, Simon & Schuster, 2013

Amazon Best book of 2013

Audible Best Audiobook of 2013

Over 150,000 copies in print in over 25 languages worldwide


Berger has published more than 35 articles in leading, psychology, marketing, and general science journals. These include: •Berger, Jonah and Katy Milkman (2012), “What Makes Online Content Viral?” Journal of Marketing Research, 49 (2), 192-205. •Berger, Jonah and Raghuram Iyengar (2013), “Communication Channels and Word of Mouth: How the Medium Shapes the Message,” Journal of Consumer Research, October. •Zoey Chen and Jonah Berger (2013), “When, Why, and How Controversy Causes Conversation,” Journal of Consumer Research, October. •Berger, Jonah, Eric Bradlow, Alex Braunstein, and Yao Zhang (2012), “From Karen to Katie: Using Baby names to Study Cultural Evolution” Psychological Science, 23 (10), 1067-1073. •Sela, Aner and Jonah Berger (2012), “Decision Quicksand: How Trivial Choice Suck Us In” Journal of Consumer Research, 39(2), 360-370. •Berger, Jonah and Eric Schwartz (2011), “What Drives Immediate and Ongoing Word of Mouth?” Journal of Marketing Research, October, 869-880. •Berger, Jonah and Devin Pope (2011), “Can Losing Lead to Winning?” Management Science, 57(5), 817-827. •Berger, Jonah, Alan T. Sorensen, and Scott J. Rasmussen (2010), “Positive Effects of Negative Publicity: When Negative Reviews Increase Sales,” Marketing Science, 29(5), 815-827. •Berger, Jonah and Gael Le Mens (2009), “How Adoption Speed Affects the Abandonment of Cultural Tastes,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106, 8146-8150. •Berger, Jonah, Marc Meredith, and S. Christian Wheeler (2008), “Contextual Priming: Where People Vote Affects How They Vote,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105 (26), 8846-8849. •Berger, Jonah and Gráinne M. Fitzsimons (2008), “Dogs on the Street, Pumas on Your Feet: How Cues in the Environment Influence Product Evaluation and Choice,” Journal of Marketing Research, 45(1), 1-14. •Berger, Jonah and Chip Heath (2007), “Where Consumers Diverge from Others: Identity-Signaling and Product Domains,” Journal of Consumer Research, 34(2), 121-134.


Berger has been recognized for both his teaching and research with awards including:


  1. ^ Clark, Dorie. "How to Create Viral Content". Forbes. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 
  2. ^ Sacks, Danielle. ""Fifty Percent Of 'The Tipping Point' Is Wrong." Jonah Berger Shows You Which Half". Fast Company. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 
  3. ^ a b Anderson, Kare. "The Secret Behind Why Things Catch On". Forbes. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 
  4. ^ "Jonah Berger - Marketing Department". University of Pennsylvania - Wharton School. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 
  5. ^ Berger, Jonah. "Jonah Berger". Jonah Berger. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 

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