Picture of rapport in Michelle Bowden's article on tech talk: mastering the art of presenting technical information

Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly

Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly by Michelle Bowden the best selling author of How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley)

 

If you’d like to fine-tune your ability to influence others, a book I can recommend is Influence; The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini.  Cialdini is really the father of influence. In the realm of social psychology, Robert Cialdini’s principles of influence have become foundational for understanding how people are persuaded and influenced in various situations. He did most of the important research that informs books like mine these days.

 

In this book, Cialdini outlines the key influence patterns that exist in human communication.

 

Once you are aware of Cialdini’s ‘unconscious’ patterns of influence you can use them to increase your persuasive power and reduce the likelihood that you will be manipulated by others.

Reciprocity

The principle of reciprocity revolves around the idea that people feel obligated to return favours or concessions after receiving them.  For example, when a colleague helps you with a project, you may feel compelled to return the favour by assisting them with their tasks in the future. In business, offering a free trial or a sample product can invoke a sense of reciprocity, prompting potential customers to reciprocate by making a purchase.

Giving a gift in Michelle Bowden's article on Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly
Loyalty card in Michelle Bowden's article on Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly

Commitment and Consistency

People have a strong desire to be consistent with their past behaviors, beliefs, and commitments. Once individuals commit to a stance or action, they are more likely to uphold it in order to maintain a self-perception of consistency. An example of this principle in action is seen in marketing strategies that encourage small initial commitments, such as signing up for a newsletter or joining a loyalty program. Once individuals take these initial steps, they are more likely to make larger commitments over time.

Social Proof

Social proof relies on the idea that people look to others’ actions and behaviors to guide their own decisions, especially in uncertain or ambiguous situations. Testimonials, customer reviews, and endorsements are powerful tools that leverage social proof to influence consumer behavior. For instance, displaying customer testimonials on a product page can reassure potential buyers and sway them towards making a purchase by highlighting positive experiences shared by others.

Happy customer in Michelle Bowden's article on Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly
Person of authority in Michelle Bowden's article on Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly

Authority

The principle of authority suggests that people are more likely to comply with requests or directives from figures they perceive as legitimate authorities or experts in a particular domain. This could be a doctor recommending a specific medication or a renowned chef endorsing a kitchen appliance. By positioning individuals as authoritative figures, their recommendations carry more weight and influence.

Liking

People are more inclined to comply with requests from individuals they know, like, or perceive as similar to themselves. Building rapport, finding common ground, and showcasing shared interests are effective strategies to enhance likability and influence. Salespeople often employ this principle by establishing a personal connection with customers, thereby increasing the likelihood of making a sale.

Four friends in rapport in Michelle Bowden's article on Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly
Food run out in Michelle Bowden's article on Mastering Influence: 6 Actionable Tips to Boost Your Impact Instantly

Scarcity

The principle of scarcity capitalises on people’s fear of missing out on valuable opportunities or resources that are limited in availability. Limited-time offers, exclusive deals, and scarcity tactics create a sense of urgency and drive individuals to act swiftly to secure what they perceive as scarce. For example, phrases like “limited stock available” or “offer valid for the next 24 hours only” prompt consumers to make immediate purchasing decisions.

 

As you can see, Robert Cialdini’s influence patterns provide a comprehensive framework for understanding how individuals can effectively persuade and influence others in various contexts. By applying these principles—reciprocity, commitment and consistency, social proof, authority, liking, and scarcity—individuals and organisations can enhance their ability to sway decisions, shape behaviours, and achieve desired outcomes.

Understanding these principles not only empowers marketers and sales professionals to craft more persuasive strategies, it also equips you with valuable insights into how you might be influenced by others in everyday interactions.

MICHELLE BOWDEN IS THE PERSUASIONIST!

Based on thousands of hours of global research, Michelle can show you there is a GAP in the way your people persuade your customers, prospects and decision makers.

Once you fill that gap, it will increase how often they hear the word ‘yes’!

Remember an idea is just an idea until you persuade someone to support it, fund it or endorse it.  SUCCESSFUL companies are made up of PERSUASIVE people.

Book Michelle to speak at your next conference or off-site meeting and give your people a huge laugh while they learn.

1000 Masterclass Extravaganza - the Power of Persuasion Unveiled 2024 - Michelle Bowden, female keynote speaker engages the crowd
Michelle Bowden Presentation Skills Training

©2024 MICHELLE BOWDEN is an authority on persuasive presenting in business. She’s run her Persuasive Presentation Skills Masterclass over 1000 times for more than 13,000 people over the past 25 years and her name is a synonym for ‘presentation skills’ in Australia.

She’s a multi-million-dollar pitch coach to her client list that reads like a who’s who of international business: banking and finance, IT, pharmaceutical, retail, telecommunications plus many more. Michelle is the creator of the Persuasion Smart Profile®, a world-first psychological assessment tool that reports on your persuasive strengths and weaknesses at work, the best-selling internationally published author of How to Present: the ultimate guide to presenting live and online (Wiley) and How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley)

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