What Are The “A” Factors?

by Jay Deragon on 09/24/2008

The more time I spend engaged in all this social stuff the clearer the “system” becomes. While the “system” evolves and the technology advances the more definitive the fundamentals become. The fundamentals are driven by a simple set of “factors” that drive business and personal adoption. These are what we call the “A” factors and they include:

  • Attention: Traditional media has historically been aimed at getting our attention about a product or service. Through broadcast mediums, both online and off line, messaging, images and interactive methods have been and continue to be used to get our attention. Now through all the social tools and new media everyone and everything is vying to get our attention.
  • Attraction: We are all fundamentally attracted to people and things. The attraction method is aimed at creating media which addresses the issues, the people and the things that attract us based on our affiliation and affinity. Technology has enabled the masses to increase reach. Reaching others with a common attraction to issues of common interest is the art and science of using social technologies effectively. Whether it be ones profile within a social network or the content of ones blog, creating the attraction after we get people’s attention is the game.
  • Affinity: People have affinity to people and things. It is the “affinity” that creates stickiness, conversations and followers. Webster’s defines affinity as 1): an attraction to or liking for something, (2) an attractive force between substances or particles that causes them to enter into and remain in chemical combination (3) likeness based on relationship or causal connection. To accomplish anything in life two or more people gather together based on an affinity to the goal or objective. People have an affinity to certain causes aimed at accomplishing both personal and professional objectives. Businesses create products and services whose affinity is aimed at attracting markets of people and subsequent commerce.

Both individuals and businesses alike create attention, attraction and affinity through conversations. All this social stuff has significantly increased the reach of conversations from one to one to millions at the click of a mouse. Social media is the tool for leveraging the “A” Factors aimed at specific affinities to conversational markets.

The foundational imperative to success in a networked world is learning how to use the “A” Factors to enhance existing relations and build new ones. The new imperative is centric to human relations facilitated by real conversations, not hype or spin. The intersection of technology and human behavior is the new art and science of business and personal accomplishment in emerging new markets that transform our thinking, our beliefs and our knowledge.

How good are you at leveraging the “A” Factors for specific accomplishment? Just remember in order to leverage anything you need a relationship.

Get it? What say you?


Jay Deragon September 25, 2008 at 3:57 pm

Great points. Thanks for the feedback

adrian chan September 25, 2008 at 12:19 pm

May I add to your “A” factors?

The “A” factors add up to the Appeal to Action — attention and attraction are key to engaging the individual’s interest. And anything online is user-centric, so user interest is necessary for involvement.

But to then move beyond the user and become social, we need “C” factors: connection, communication, creation, community. Individual users need to feel like communicating their interest, acting on what attracts them (as you put it) and on what they’re are paying attention to.

The standard marketing appeal culminates in a call to action. The social media marketing appeal culminates in a call to social interaction.


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