Social networking potential

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Social networking potential (SNP) is a numeric coefficient, derived through algorithms[which?] to represent both the size of an individual's social network and their ability to influence that network. A close synonym is the Alpha User, a person with a high SNP.

SNP coefficients have two primary functions:

  1. the classification of individuals based on their social networking potential, and
  2. the weighting of respondents in quantitative marketing research studies.

By calculating the SNP of respondents and by targeting High SNP respondents, the strength and relevance of quantitative marketing research used to drive viral marketing strategies is enhanced.

Variables used to calculate an individual's SNP include but are not limited to: participation in Social Networking activities, group memberships, leadership roles, recognition, publication/editing/contributing to non-electronic media, publication/editing/contributing to electronic media (websites, blogs), and frequency of past distribution of information within their network.[1] The acronym "SNP" and some of the first algorithms developed to quantify an individual's social networking potential were described in the white paper "Advertising Research is Changing" (Gerstley, 2003) See Viral Marketing.[2]

The first book[citation needed] to discuss the commercial use of Alpha Users among mobile telecoms audiences was 3G Marketing by Ahonen, Kasper and Melkko in 2004. The first book to discuss Alpha Users more generally in the context of social marketing intelligence was Communities Dominate Brands by Ahonen & Moore in 2005. In 2012, Nicola Greco (UCL) presents at TEDx the Social Networking Potential as a parallelism to the potential energy that users generate and companies should use, stating that "SNP is the new asset that every company should aim to have".[3]


Ahonen & Moore: Communities Dominate Brands, futuretext, 2005


  1. ^ "7 Expert Tips For Twitter Users - FameMax". FameMax. 
  2. ^ (Hrsg.), Sara Rosengren (2013). The Changing Roles of Advertising. Wiesbaden: Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden GmbH. ISBN 9783658023645. Retrieved 22 October 2015. 
  3. ^ "technology" "Watch "TEDxMilano - Nicola Greco - on math and social network" Video at TEDxTalks". TEDxTalks.