Influence the Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B Cialdini, PhD

Influence the Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B Cialdini, PhD




“Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion” was written because the author believed that there is a psychology of compliance. In the introduction Robert Cialdinistates; “I can let in it freely now. All my life I’ve been a patsy. For as long as I can ingemination, I’ve been an easy mark for the pitches of peddlers, fund-raisers, and operators of one sort or another.” Masterfully researched and written over the duration of 35 years, the book explains the psychology of why people say “yes” and how to apply this understanding to everyday life. As consumers, we like to think that we can’t be easily fooled by a salesperson. However, the book proves that we are being “sucked in” everyday to buy things we don’t want or need.

Compliance tactics used in the field of sales, fundraising and advertising, unveiled the six universal principles of ethical persuasion. The book explains the psychological triggers that influence people to comply with requests, and covers how these triggers are used. Use them to become a skilled persuader, or defend yourself against them. Hopefully, the principles will move the reader toward personal change, and act as a driving force for success.

Simple truths

Expensive implies quality Turquoise jewellery, in the peak of tourist season [marked half price] wasn’t selling. The store’s employee then mistakenly marked up the jewellery by doubling the price. Within a week the jewellery completely sold out. If it’s expensive, it has got to be good.

strength of Contrast

If you go into a men’s store the sales people always try to sell you an expensive suit before they sell you the expensive sweater, shirt or tie. The strength of contrast makes the other items appear to be more affordable.

strength of Reason

People are more likely to agree to a request if a reason is given.

The following emotional methods are used to persuade/sell products and sets to consumers. The six psychological influences that direct human behavior include

1. Reciprocation

2. Commitment and Consistency

3. Social Proof

4. Liking

5. Authority

6. shortagen

1. Reciprocity. If the person who’s selling raffle tickets buys you a coffee, you’re more likely to buy raffle tickets from them. The laws of reciprocation prove that the person, after being offered something will feel obligated to buy something already if they are not interested.

2. Commitment. Make a commitment to unprotected to something, once the commitment is made there is a strong desire to keep consistent to it. People like and believe in commitment, their image and reputation is what is at stake. From early on we are taught to always keep our promises. Our ingrained responses will have negative connotations if we fail to keep these commitments.

3. Social Proof. Simply put, the idea that if others do it it’s good. People follow the crowd because they believe in the wisdom of it. Assign responsibility. If you want things done tell someone to do it, otherwise, everyone will just assume that it’s being done.

4. Liking. Attractiveness, similarity, compliments, contact and cooperation can make a person more influential. Most of us say yes to the requests of those we like. The marketing of Tupperware might in addition be called viral marketing. People were more likely to buy the product if they liked the person selling it to them.

5. Authority. When faced with a decision people to take the rule from people with authority. Authority can be real or imaginary; people tend to buy from people who have specialized titles. Other authority figures include celebrity product endorsements or con artists who use expensive cars and tailored suits to sell every kind of product.

6. shortagen. A psychological reaction is attached to this concept; people don’t want to lose. A college student purchased second hand cars, polished them, and advertised them for sale at a distinctly higher price than what he’d paid. His secret weapon? He asked everyone who responded to his ad to arrive at the same time. The first guy to arrive was shown the car and while he was looking another prospective buyer would arrive. Then another. The first guy would be told a line is forming and given a few more minutes to make up his mind. You could imagine the anxiety that built up in the possible buyers’ minds. If the first guy did not buy, the second one almost always did.

Fortunately, Cialdini concludes each chapter with hints on “How to say no.” No matter how intelligent consumers are, they have undoubtedly fallen for many of these techniques used deliberately or accidentally. How many poor business investment decisions, product purchases, or strategic moves have been influenced by non-rational factors? Thank goodness automatic, mindless decisions are now a thing of the past!




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