Jonah Berger is a renowned expert on word of mouth, influence, consumer behavior, and how products, ideas, and behaviors are shared and disseminated. Professor Berger analyzes the impact of digital and traditional marketing, as well as social media, on consumer behavior and product demand. He specializes in using sophisticated quantitative tools, such as natural language processing and automated content analysis, to gain behavioral insights from textual data. Professor Berger has also conducted hundreds of surveys, in both academic research and consulting matters. He has been retained as an expert witness and testified in multiple depositions and at trial.
In his research, Professor Berger assesses how text in online reviews, customer service calls, press releases, marketing communications, and other interactions can be used to gain insights about the impact of marketing. He has also studied what makes certain online content go viral, the effects of negative publicity, and how assortment size influences brand perceptions and choice.
Professor Berger is the author of bestselling books on consumer behavior, including Magic Words: What to Say to Get Your Way (2023); The Catalyst: How to Change Anyone’s Mind (2020); Invisible Influence: The Hidden Forces That Shape Behavior (2016); and Contagious: Why Things Catch On (2013). Amazon cited Contagious among its Best Business Books of the Year.
Professor Berger has published over fifty articles in leading academic journals, including the Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Consumer Research. His coauthored article “What Makes Online Content Go Viral?” won Sage’s 2023 10-Year Impact Award, which recognizes articles with lasting influence in the decade since their publication. The Journal of Marketing Research also honored this article with its William F. O’Dell Award, for significant, long-term contribution to marketing theory, methodology, and/or practice.
The American Management Association named Professor Berger one of the top thirty leaders in business. He has consulted to major tech firms, global retailers, and leading nonprofit organizations.
Professor Berger has served on the editorial boards of Marketing Science and the Journal of Consumer Psychology, among others. In the mainstream media, the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine’s “Year in Ideas,” and Harvard Business Review have covered his research.
At the Wharton School, Professor Berger has received multiple awards for excellence in research and teaching. He has taught courses on consumer behavior and marketing management; his course on viral marketing ranks among the most in-demand on Wharton Online.
Before joining the Wharton School, Professor Berger held visiting academic appointments at Cornell NYC Tech, Cornell University, and Fuqua School of Business, Duke University.