The bandwagon effect refers to a psychological attribute in which human beings do or act on something mainly because other individuals around them are doing it. In this phenomenon, they less take into account or regard their personal beliefs and in this case, they, may end up ignoring or overriding them. A wide range of implications are associated with the bandwagon effect. However, the phenomenon is largely seen or exhibited in the consumer behavior of goods and services and most prominently in politics.
There is sufficient evidence that campaigns can be used by the campaigners in shaping the public opinion and influencing them to the ballot. Polls are attributed to a higher and significant effect than most individuals can imagine. In most cases, voters supporting one of the candidates may get dissuaded from voting them once their most preferred candidates are almost loosing. This is normally attributed to the feeling that their votes may be lost or may not essentially make an impact. This aspect is, in the contemporary world, termed as the bandwagon effect.
Effect of the social conformity, typically referred to as the fate of the society, may influence how people in the community think, make decisions and act. Most of the voters are often in the preference of not making informed decisions and choices before they cast their votes but instead make a choice of mimicking or following the decisions and behavior of other voters in the community instead. Behavior and attitude depend on how people view and perceive their counterparts in the society. In instances where a candidate seems to have gathered the majority of support, they are viewed and regarded more positively and are more likely to win votes from the uncommitted voters or supporters. The bandwagon effect is better explained in the sense that no single person likes casting their votes for the losing candidate. Research studies indicate that aspiring leaders leading any polls stand a chance of benefiting from this phenomenon. However, there are controversies on how strong the effect remains.
Kiss, Áron, and Gábor Simonovits. “Identifying The Bandwagon Effect In Two-Round Elections.” Public Choice 160.3-4 (2013): 327-344. Web.