The Emotional Oracle: Predicting Crowd Behavior With Feelings

Leonard Lee, Columbia University, USA
Michel Tuan Pham, Columbia University, USA
Andrew Stephen, INSEAD, France
Predictions of crowd behavior are often associated with careful reasoning and logic. However, what role do emotions play? We examine how reliance on feelings affects the accuracy of such predictions across four studies covering short- and long-range forecasts and three contexts (movies’ box-office revenues, the Dow Jones stock market index, and the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination). We find greater accuracy in feeling-based predictions than those based more on logical reasoning. Using affect helps people to focus less on personal thoughts and preferences and put themselves in the shoes of the crowd to consider how others feel.
[ to cite ]:
Leonard Lee, Michel Tuan Pham, and Andrew Stephen (2010) ,"The Emotional Oracle: Predicting Crowd Behavior With Feelings", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 94-97 .