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6 ways you can become more persuasive in your life

The book Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, looks like it’s an interesting read.

You can also watch a video overview of how these 6 ways break down:

..but for your convenience, here’s my summary in written bites:

6 ways of scientifically proven, ethical persuasion


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

1. RECIPROCITY: Give first, and give unexpectedly

Waiters and waitresses, and diners, take note!

Receiving a mint at the end of your bill at a restaurant, makes a diner more likely to give 3% more as a tip.

Receiving two mints, jacks their tip up 14% more.

If you give the mint, and then give extra mints after saying: “But for you really nice folks, here are some extra mints“, your tip will be increased by 23%.

2. SCARCITY: Tell them it’s (really) going away

One word: Twinkies.

If you tell someone that something is disappearing, and they buy it like crazy.

I heard a $4 box of them went for something like $100 on eBay.

3. AUTHORITY: Credibility & a uniform goes a long way

People in uniform are more likely to command respect from us, than in civilian garb.

You can also have other people introduce you with a small credible factoid about your skills, which will increase your credibility.

For instance, a secretary saying that for sales, she’ll direct them to someone who has 15 years of experience in sales, makes people 20% more likely to hire them.

4. CONSISTENCY: Small commitments lead to bigger ones

They have to be voluntary and actively participating in small commitments before they are able to agree to bigger ones.

5. LIKING: People give to those who are like them

Everyone prefers people who are like them — similar interests for instance can really help negotiations and having everyone cooperate towards a greater goal.

6. CONSENSUS: Actions and behaviours of others to determine their own

We are a big herd and there is no better example than the stock market.

We look and see other people selling, before we sell all our stocks in a panic and realizing our losses instead of waiting out the rocky period.

What other people do, makes a big difference in what we do.


  • Jane Savers @ Solving The Money Puzzle

    3) Authority credibility and a uniform go a long way.

    My younger coworkers, who are very bright and capable, are often annoyed because my opinion (healthcare) is more highly valued and I tell them it is because I am in my 40s and people want to talk to mature staff and not people they perceive as too young to know anything. The only advantage of age that I can see.

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