People would rather be part of something they perceive to be succeeding as opposed to something they think is failing. True on many levels.
However, as was pointed out on my Facebook status when I posted the above sentiment, people enjoy rooting for the underdog. As TC says, "There's a strong attraction to the underdog in the American psyche."
But I'd argue that in the long run, people still want to stand with the winners. If an underdog consistently fails to overcome its underdog status and become a winner, it loses credibility. Eventually, people move on. Or, they stick with their one-time underdog that has made the transformation.
In addition, strong enough trust in a principle or cause can trump the perceived negativity in being associated with a minority opinion, business, or what have you. Which is probably why I support several causes and opinions that have only minority following in the USA.
Except . . . these causes/principles I support, while unpopular to a majority of americans, happen to be held by people I respect far more than a mass of people I don't know. Which means that I'm still part of something I perceive as successful; I'm not an outlier in my own self-selected peer group of belief.
Anyway, this is all a very longwinded way of saying: don't be negative. If you're negative all the time, people will eventually begin keeping their distance. If you own a small business, talk about your successes, not your anxieties and challenges in keeping revenue coming through the door. If you tweet or update your Facebook status a lot, keep the content generally positive or humorous.
This way, when you actually do have some sad news or melancholy thoughts to relate, your friends, followers, or customers will sit up and take note. When you have actual constructive criticism to offer, people will take you seriously. When your small business needs that tiny one-time pop, you'll get results. And so on.