Ways To Increase Your Powers Of Persuasion

The six ways of increasing your influence – from Robert Cialdini's classic book Influence: The Power Of Persuasion.


People have a natural sense of “fairness” – if I receive something from someone, I should repay them in some capacity. This makes it harder for people to say “no” to a request after they have already received something of value.

For example, the American Disabled Veterans organization sends out mailers asking for donations. They conducted a test: one group of mailers were sent with a simple form letter, while others included a form letter along with a small gift – such as personalized address labels. The result? A 100% increase in donations.


People don’t like to break commitments. This is not just true with legal contracts or large, binding commitments; the motivational force is strong for all levels.

For example, a restaurant owner in Chicago was concerned because many people made reservations but didn’t actually show up, so he made a simple change. He instructed his receptionists to stop saying, "Please call if you change your plans" and to start saying, Will you call us if you change your plans?" The no-show rate dropped more than 60% within two months.


This is simply another word for “brand.” Companies like Starbucks make large margins because they have built “authority” as a


Authority is valuable because it conveys the perception of expertise. If you have achieved certain things, or have certain skills/abilities that others don’t have, you can charge a substantial premium for your time.

One expert at building authority is Ramit Sethi, author of the best selling I Will Teach You To Be Rich. He leveraged his Stanford education, entrepreneurial background, and NYC selling author status to launch the Earn1k course. Although this course is expensive, he has no problem getting a lot of costumers because his expertise is perceived to be very valuable.

Social Proof.

Most people are followers. If they see a trend, they are much more likely to jump onboard.

This is why good testimonials are so important. If people have seen that other customers are endorsing what they’ve bought, they are more likely to buy themselves.


Have you ever seen the “only 2 more hours to buy!” icons online? This is the power of the scarcity tactic – people are more likely to take action when they perceive that an opportunity might go away.

This is the power of the Daily Deal business model. Companies like GroupOn make billions of dollars by creating a short-term opportunity, which dramatically increases sales.


This is an obvious one – people are more likely to say yes when they already like somebody.

However, it manifests itself in non-obvious ways. For example, my good friend Brian Crane runs a website called LuckyGunner, which is targeted at the hunter equipment niche. The site features an attractive blond named Heidi who is the “face and voice” of the LuckyGunner brand. The men visiting the site love Heidi, and thus they are much more likely to buy.


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