A recent review of more than 20 academic papers on social contagion, published in the book Consumer Insights: Findings From Behavioral Research, shows that consumers are heavily influenced not only by word of mouth – which we all know by now — but also by merely observing the behaviors of others, even if no communication takes place.In your outreach in 2012, make sure that you keep this in mind. Here are some ideas on how to apply these findings:1. Include social sharing links in all of your outreach to encourage word of mouth2. Include a quote from a donor about why they support you on your home page3. Have beneficiaries write your acknowledgements to encourage work of mouth4. Have donors or volunteers write your next appeal, with details on why they support youRemember, you are rarely as effective a messenger as your supporters are.