The Bandwagon Effect

The Bandwagon Effect is a phenomenon whereby the rate of uptake of beliefs, ideas, fads and trends increases the more that they have already been adopted by others. I’ve noticed an extraordinarily high volume of this effect happens when a competitor does something such as launch a product or make an announcement.

The bandwagon effect is characterized by the probability of individual or corporate adoption increasing with respect to the proportion who have already done so. As more people come to believe in something, others also “hop on the bandwagon” regardless of the underlying evidence.

A useful counter-measure is to ask yourself: How much of my decision-making is being influenced by what another person/group/organisation is doing? How much action would I take if they hadn’t done anything first?

For a full list of the most common biases, click here.