Science of Persuasion

I always had an interest for persuasion, but like most other people do, for a long time I thought some people had it and some people had it. Well according to this talk it’s not at all, we can learn to be persuasive. And there are special ingredients you probably will need to achieve it.

Most Sales people will know the 6 most powerful rules of persuasion. It’s interesting that most of these principles I’ve encountered many times before in other books, all together or a few of them. This gives me the idea that there must be some kind of truth to these. The book “How to win friends and Influence people” by Dale Carnegie is one of the most popular examples of sales techniques and be a better human being if you’d ask me. All these principles are being recommended by a whole variety of experts in sales. Here we go!

The 6 most powerful persuasive techniques

  1. Reciprocity
  2. Scarcity
  3. Authority
  4. Consistency
  5. Liking
  6. Consensus

Reciprocity

Reciprocity. Roughly defined its getting something back once you’ve given something yourself. Otherwise put it: It’s the obligation you feel whey you receive something. Almost every person has this bias in their system. They can’t do anything about it. The same goes for example a question. A pending question just waits to get answered. A couple of months ago I worked for a sales company and they gave me this insight. If you want to hold people one of the best ways to do it is asking a question or during the talk giving something to them.

There are even numbers on this researched on in a restaurant. An example of this is the waiter that is bringing a gift with the bill, like a mint. This increased the amount of tips with 3%. When there where 2 mints on the platter the tips even increased with 14%. But when the waiter walked away, turned around with another mint saying: “you people can have more than one mint” even increased the tips with 23%.

It’s very interesting to know what these seemingly unimportant behaviours can cause in terms of change.

Scarcity

Scarcity is also a big pillar in sales as well. To summarise it in one phrase would be: “People want more of those things they can have less of.” We see this all the time. I myself see this in the way people I follow try to sell their courses. “you have one day left to register for course x”, “This unique course will teach you what only other people dreamed of having”.

These kinds of phrasing are very compelling for most people and very understandably. I don’t know the main reason I heard correct, but it seems very logical to me. I heard it from Tai Lopez. The reason is that evolutionarily we came from circumstances where we were in a constant state of scarcity. Scarcity of food, of security, almost everything was in scarcity. This is biologically been framed in our hardwiring. This makes it very difficult to say no to things like, sugar and fat for example. Resources we needed to have but was very scarce. Industries like the food industry play this card all the time. Very effective sales tactic that is being used in so many commercials and marketing. You won’t believe.

Authority

This says that people will follow the credible experts. When talking about what they will be willing to do. The Milgram experiment is one of the most popular quoted experiments conducted on this bias.  We listen to people who we think knows more than us in a specific subject. We see this as well in commercials of toothpaste. Providing the right credentials and we follow almost everyone if the deal seems reasonable.

Consistency ( or Commitment)

This comes down on the consistency of our actions and what we said to other people or to ourselves. People tend to want to be consistent, how paradoxical a situation might be. We want to be the person we say we are if not we feel bad about the actions we take. In sales we try to take advantage on this to let a person say yes at a very specific set of questions. Getting them into the “yes-state” is one of the things you do by leading them in a stream of their thoughts that you steer.

So if you want to persuade people to do something for you try to let them to do a very small favor for you first. They are way more likely to comply after doing this.

Liking/Likeableness

This is a very interesting and powerful tool as well and now to come and think of it, I use this actually all the time. The ability to be liked by other people in a sense. One of the most important ones. It’s fairly simple put. People want to give you more if they like you. There are two things to take in account when you want to increase this powerful tool. And I think it’s highly recommended for everyone because this is one of the most genuinely morally good tools you can actually use for yourself.

  1. Similarity
  2. Pay (genuine) compliments

Similarity

If you want to be likeable to the other person, the other person has to see a part of themselves in you. In face-to-face situations you can use body language and the tone of voice to persuade them. The more you act like them the more, oftentimes, will people like you. But again, you have to be genuine in your pursuit. But this also means, provide what people want from you. Don’t say one thing and do the other.

A nice statistic on this is what they’ve done with two groups of sales people. One group got the objective to especially be very careful with the time they had. i.e. Close the deal ASAP. The other group was instructed to try and share and ask for personal stories of people. And wouldn’t you know, the first group got a 55% of people closed, the second group 90% closed. For a large part you could almost say that good Sales is all about making friends.

Pay (genuine) compliments

Pay people compliments this makes people feel good, and when happy, especially when you make them happy, want to do much more for you. A nice phrasing is in place: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel ” And if we assume this is true, it is very important that we make people feel good.

Consensus or Social proof

“People will look to the actions of other to determine their own.” We are herd animals. We tend to follow the herd. You see this very much in trends in fashion for example. People who work in marketing are highly aware of this bias of us and is using this oftentimes in their commercially outputs. Messages in commercials like: 9 out of the 10 people who recommended this is happier/skinnier/has more hair or whatever. And it works.

This video that I once watched as part of a sales training program will let you see what some of these tactics can do.

Conclusion

Not all of these tactics can be put to use by us, or maybe better said, I see some ways working way better than others. So the tactics I will want to use are Scarcity, Authority and Consensus.

Scarcity

The methods of scarcity we can always use. Especially for events, and we did that with the event of the 19th of October, we really press the uniqueness and the pressing of time to get more people to come and it was our biggest event yet.

Authority

Authority is a bit tricky, but since our last course we can see the outcome of our actions and these are definitely positive. This means our courses work. Not necessarily to create businesses, but better peoples lives. The people that joined DL have a higher chance of getting a job, know how hard they can work, we provide them with a network. All these things have benefitted the people that do a course with us. And when you ask these people what they think of DL they are all very grateful that we were there to give the course. This we can use to profile ourselves as authority, especially after so much of experimenting and just doing it and see what happens. We have grown as a business. Every course we know better what tactics work better and implement this in the following course.

Consensus

Consensus. We can show how many people support us and have joined us. At this point this amount is already pretty high, but we can even put it up a notch. We can actually see that during the last three courses Delitelabs has become every time more popular. And I can say from experience that everybody that joined DELITELABS as a participant was very grateful to have given this opportunity, which we can use when we profile ourself when we communicate with the outside world. Especially stories from our participants are now one of our key ways of communicating to the outside world. This is to build more connection with our audience and so far this method has been proven quite solid. See this also in the movie we did for the crowdfunding campaign, the photos on Instagram we put out and the stories we share on our blog.

 

 

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