Le leadership d’opinion dans le commerce équitable : une lecture institutionnaliste
By Bertrandias, Pernin, and Sénéchal
Fair Trade (FT) represents a social and business innovation which, at its stage of development, must rely with interpersonal dissemination to conquer a broader market share. The behaviours of opinion leadership, ie sharing information and influence others, are therefore very important to increase the frequency of choice for FT products. Our communication is concerned with identifying and establishing the profile of FT’s opinion leaders. This article follows two goals. The first is to propose a psychometric tool to facilitate opinion leader identification. The second objective is bound to profile FT’s opinion leaders. Beyond the sociodemographic characteristics, we try to understand whether the conduct of opinion leaders is part of a political or social conscience broader, crossing leader / non-leader with ecological behaviour (consumption of organic products, sensitivity to renewables energies), or altruistic (blood donation), and associations’ membership. Within the class of leaders, different profiles are based on the debates that shape the field of fair trade. Specifically, we seek to determine if there is a difference between opinion leaders according to the confidence they give or not to supermarkets to abide by the principles of FT. We identify three types of leaders. Two of these types can be associated respectively with the main streams within FT: the integrated sector and the labeled sector. We also highlight a third type of leader: individuals whose can play the role of negatives leaders, ie to discourage their entourage to buy fair trade products.