Episode 132: Robert Cialdini on Persuasive Marketing in Times of Uncertainty and Amplifying and Activating Influence Strategies
Dr. Robert Cialdini has codified the art and science of persuasion strategies at a cognitive level.
In understanding how our brains work, and what behavior can be created using a series of rules that motivate us to act, Bob has given marketers, sales people and leaders the structural frame to become more effective... more effective at selling product, ideas, causes.
Find out not only what the six principles of persuasion are, but how to amplify and activate them. Learn the most common mistakes marketers make when employing these principles. And get a glimpse into which of the principles should be given the highest focus in times of uncertainty.
Bob compares his procedures to NLP, noting the similarities. He explains how you can win over your rivals by inconveniencing them... and attributes the idea to Ben Franklin. He also teaches us exactly what to say to avoid bungling a critical "moment of power." And share the one word that can increase your persuasiveness by 50%!
Tune in to meet the keynote speaker at Affiliate Summit West 2010 and the author of the marketing bible, "Influence: Science & Practice" and his best-seller "YES! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive."
Susan Bratton: Welcome to DishyMix. I’m your host, Susan Bratton, and on today’s show you’re going to get to meet Dr. Robert Cialdini. If you haven’t heard of Dr. Robert Cialdini, who I will now call Bob, you are going to be glad that you are going to get to know him today for one reason: if you’re a marketer, if you’re a sales person, if you’re a CEO, if you’re a manager, most of your success hinges on your powers of persuasion, your ability to influence others to support you in accomplishing the things that you want to accomplish, whether that’s selling your widgets, getting a promotion, or just living the life that you want. And Bob Cialdini has written some definitive books in this category. His first book is called Influence: Science and Practice. It’s about the psychology of persuasion, and he took that recently to new levels with another book called YES!: 50 Scientifically Proven Ways To Be Persuasive. He’s the keynote speaker at the upcoming Affiliate Summit. I’m planning to attend that event, and I can’t wait to talk to Bob Cialdini now to whet your appetite for what he’ll be doing at Affiliate Summit and his groundbreaking work in understanding how our brains work and how we’re motivated in influence. So lets get him on the show. Welcome Bob.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Well I’m glad to be with you and your audience, Susan.
Susan Bratton: Thank you so much. I’m looking forward to meeting at Affiliate Summit. We’ll go to Vegas and have some fun. But lets just do a level-set Bob; I love the strategy that you, or the way that you call our brain patterns the ‘click and were’. I think it’s a great introduction into the concept of what you talk about with persuasion strategy. Will you share how that all works for you?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Well I think it has to do with the fact that we live in what is unquestionably the most stimulus saturated information overloaded environment that’s ever existed on the planet. And as a consequence we need shortcuts to handle shortcuts to handle all of the density and the pace of this information, this change and challenge that we’re confronted with on a daily basis. And so we look for those rules of thumb, those, what are called, heuristics in the trade of cognitive science, that give us ways to make good decisions without having to fully consider all of the array of pros and cons and detail that normally is required for making a good decision. So a shortcut might be expensive equals good. If it’s expensive chances are it’s of high quality; therefore I can judge the quality of something simply by taking a look at its price. So people can respond in those kinds of shortcut ways and normally be right.
Susan Bratton: So how different are your principles? You have many principles of persuasion. I mean if you just read the book Influence, you can probably tease 15 out of that, and you wrote a book that had 50. There are a lot of these brain patterns that we use as shortcuts. How different is this group of persuasion principles than NLP and what I think about – you know, you say likeability, we call that potentially mirroring, you know. They seem similar.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Well mirroring is actually a tactic. It’s a way to achieve likeability. Likeability would be the principle that you can achieve in a variety of ways through a variety of tactics. You can tell people that you like their, what they’re wearing. You can give them a compliment. You can tell them that you and they are similar in some ways. You can mirror and match just as NLP suggests. So there are a variety of tactics that all conspire to produce a higher-level principle of influence that will work in a wide variety of instances. So when I try to identify what I thought were the six universal principles, it wasn’t the particular practices or procedures that would lead to yes and consent; although those are certainly included in everything that I talk about ‘cause you do need to think about the procedures. But above the procedures are principles, categories of procedures that all produce yes because they all implicate a particular concept like likeability.
Susan Bratton: So is it different than NLP or an outshoot of NLP or what?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: It certainly is different from NLP in a couple of ways and similar in some other ways because what I think NLP does is to also give you some lessons and some counsel about how to go about producing a scent, producing movement in your direction. And I’m actually a fan of NLP’s approach in this regard. But there are a couple of differences in what I offer. One is we ground our lessons and approaches in scientifically conducted research studies where we can identify those things that make the most difference, that are the most powerful. NLP seems to argue from a standpoint of logic. They’ll begin with some premises and then derive the lessons that they teach from those, from those premises in kind of a logical way. What we do in the behavioral sciences is not trust our premises from the same degree. We’re going to test to see if indeed the logic that we applied actually holds.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, I notice over and over again you’re examples are derivative of research projects that have been out in the marketplace.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right.
Susan Bratton: Well this is a perfect time to have you highlight the six principles of persuasion as a level-set. And these are listed in 43,000 blogs all over the Internet, so it’s readily available information if you want to go deeper… Well first you should definitely buy Bob’s books, but if you also want to look at it immediately and you don’t have a Kindle yet, you can find it on blogs. But go through the six principles of persuasion with us, will you?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Sure, and I think this hooks into the earlier point that you were making about shortcuts that people are using these days to decide without having to consider the whole range of information that’s available to them and even relevant to their decision. They just don’t have the time, they don’t have the capacity, they don’t have the wherewithal to do it anymore. So they need their shortcuts. And here are, for me, the six principles that form the major shortcuts that people use to decide when to say yes to an offer or proposal or a recommendation. The first is reciprocation, the principle of reciprocation, which states that people give back to you the kind of treatment that they’ve received from you. It puts you in a very powerful position - if you go first and give benefit, give advantage, people want to give back to you as a consequence, and then you get a very powerful mutually beneficial exchange. The second is scarcity. People will try to cease the opportunities you offer them that are rare or that are dwindling in availability. So for example, last year we saw a couple of consumer products – the Wii console and the iPhone – that produced lines of people in sleeping bags around the corner of shops waiting for them to open so they could barge in and deplete the stores of these two products. Now these are good products, but that’s not why those people were in sleeping bags in November. It’s because they were not widely available, that they were in limited supply, and scarcity confers value on the very same set of merits. Now people will say to me, “Well what if I don’t have a scarce product? What if my product is abundant?” The answer is “What about your product is scarce? What feature, what aspect of it is unique or uncommon?” Bring that to the surface and people will start listening to the rest of what you have to say like never before.
Susan Bratton: Can you give us an example of that?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Of scarcity?
Susan Bratton: No, of a product that is in abundance, but you figured out a feature or an aspect of it that might be scarce. What’s a good example?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Well for example, real estate brokers do it all the time when they will call you on the phone and say, “This is, you know, that… You were looking in that neighborhood; this is the last home with a great east/west view so you’ll get a lot of sun into the… This is the last one left.” So if…
Susan Bratton: Got it.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: a unique feature, then even though there may be a lot of homes available in that neighborhood, the one with the unique feature is the one that’s going to get people to pick up their ears and get in the car and drive over to see.
Susan Bratton: Okay.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Third principle, universal principle of influence, is authority. Now I want make a distinction here; it’s not being in authority that I’m talking about. It’s being an authority, someone who is perceived as an expert, all right. People will be most persuaded by you when they see you as having knowledge and credibility on a topic. So the implication is that we have to make people aware of our genuine credentials and background and experience and know-how in a particular arena before we ever try to influence them. Be surprised how that sounds simple, but how often potential influencers, marketers fail to communicate that vital information. Even when it’s absolutely true and entitled to use it, they fail to do it before they launch into their marketing or sales approach. The fourth principle is commitment. People will feel a need to comply with your request if it is consistent with what they have publicly committed themselves to in your presence, or in some kind of public way. So the more we can get people to take a stand, to go on record, to go on to our site and make a commitment to something, the more willing they will be to act consistently with that commitment in the future, even if what they’re being requested to do is much larger than the first small step they’ve already taken. Fifth principle is one we’ve already aluded to, liking. People prefer to say yes to your request to the degree that they know and like you; there’s no surprise there. But here’s where scientific research can help. There are three simple things that we can do to increase the repertoire that people feel with us, again, before we ever try to influence them. The first is to identify genuine similarities, commonalities that exist between us. The second is to give genuine compliments, real praise to people where they deserve it. And the third is to identify opportunities for cooperative goals, that we are working together toward mutual purposes. If we can locate, identify and then bring to the surface any of those three things, the more the better, we establish a repertoire, a feeling of liking that allows all the others of these principles to work better than before. And then the following are the final principles, is consensus. People will be likely to say yes to your request if you give them evidence that people just like them have been saying yes to it. People don’t want to be out liars. They don’t want to lose the wisdom that comes from knowing what others just like them have decided to do in a situation. That’s why the power of the crowd is so important.
Susan Bratton: And is that also where testimonials fall into this, the social proof?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: You’re exactly right about this. This is where testimonials come in. So the more testimonials we have that we can provide and the more similar the voices who are providing those testimonials are to our target market, the more effective our message will be.
Susan Bratton: Let me ask another question on testimonials. More people are moving from written testimonials to video testimonials, especially in the information product marketing, landing pages, things like that. What, if anything, can we do with a video testimonial that we can’t do with a written testimonial but makes it even more persuasive, makes it even more of a consensus style possibility?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Yeah, I think the thing to do is to recognize who your market is likely. And then have testimonials where people not only say things that are complimentary, but look like the individuals, dress like, have the same demographics, have the same age range as the individuals who are your target market. Those should be the testimonials that are prioritized in your list. They should be the first ones that people come to.
Susan Bratton: Makes a lot of sense. Anything else with video that we can do that would be a good leverage point?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Well I think that what for me video does is to make manifest the commonalities and the similarities between the individual who’s providing the testimonial and the target market.
Susan Bratton: I want to go to a break, and when we come back I want to talk to you about some things that you haven’t written a lot or talked a lot about except in your workshops. You do keynotes, you do workshops and you’ve recently talked about something called amplifiers and activators. And I’m hoping, would you be willing to share one little morsel of something that is usually reserved for your workshop customers?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Certainly.
Susan Bratton: That’d be great. Thank you for doing that. We’re going to go to a break. I want to let you know that you can find Bob’s work at his website, influenceatwork.com. And of course you can find his books at all the usual places. So lets go to a break and come back and hear more about some of the things we can learn with regard to sales negotiation, how to win over your rivals by inconveniencing them, and some more about persuasion principles as applied to copywriting. Stay tuned and we’ll be right back.
Susan Bratton: We’re back. I’m your host, Susan Bratton, and we’re with Dr. Robert Cialdini. Bob, thanks so much for this; this has been great so far, and I appreciate you divulging a little bit of some things that you do just to your workshop customers. Tell us more about this idea of amplifiers and activators.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Good, happy to do that Susan, because it’s the case that people know these six principles when I talk about them. They say, “Oh yeah, I understand that people want to be consistent with their commitments. I understand that people prefer to say yes to those they know and like. I understand that people want to follow the lead of knowledgeable experts, and so on. So what’s new about this?” Well what people don’t understand is how you first of all activate these principles so they start working on your behalf. And then secondly, once you’ve got them activated, how you amplify them so that you optimize and maximize their input, their intact. Let me give you an example from the principle of reciprocation and a little study that was done not long ago by my own research team. And it has to do with something that’s very popular now in marketing called Cause Related Marketing, where a manufacturer or a corporate entity will say, “If you will purchase some of our products, if you will employ our services, we will make a donation to a good cause.” Maybe it’s the Olympics or the Special Olympics or something like that. It’s very popular now. In fact, it has now outstripped the amount of expenditure on sports sponsorships by advertisers. It turns out that while that works it’s missing something crucial about the reciprocation process. Remember what we said about the rule for reciprocation? People want to give back to you what you have given to them. Well the cause related marketers have forgotten how to activate the principle of reciprocation. They’re saying “If you do this for me, then I will do something for you.” They’re missing the point. You have to go first as a marketer, as a sales person, as a manufacturer, as a merchandiser, in order to get people to feel obligated to give back to you. So what we have found is that we’re significantly more successful if instead of saying “If you will do this, if you will purchase some of our products, then we will give a donation to a good cause”, if we say “We have already given a donation to this cause, will you join us in this effort”, we get about 28 percent more compliance.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, it’s the nuance. It’s going to happen anyway; it’s the order in which you state it.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Exactly right. And this is what people think they know but they don’t know. They don’t know the depth of the concept of reciprocation. It has to be done right, it just can’t be done willy nilly. Now one more thing to say about it… So you have to activate it by going first. Now here’s the key to amplifying it, and it has to do with the fact that we can amplify the desire of people to give back to us if what we give to them is personalized to their needs, to their circumstances, to their situation at the moment. It’s not something we give generally, but it – and to everybody in a generic sense – it’s something we’re giving to them personally. If we can do that, if we can craft what we provide by knowing what it is that this individual is especially needful of or especially happy with, the kind of obligation they feel, the kind of gratitude they feel to us, the kind of motivation to give to us is at its highest registers as a consequence. I’ll give you a quick example: there’s one hotel in the world that I recommend more than any that I have ever visited – The Mandarin Oriental in Hong Kong. And the reason I recommend it is that one day I was giving a program in Hong Kong. I had a very nice room, a suite there, and you know, when you go to a five star hotel like that there’s a drawer with stationary in it and sometimes it’ll be high quality linen stationary with the hotels name embossed in gold letters at the top if you wanted to use it to write back to your friends. Well I wanted to write a note to somebody. I went to the drawer, I opened up the envelope with the stationary in it and I found my name embossed in gold letters at the top of each sheet of paper, my name. It was….
Susan Bratton: I don’t think that was a mistake either. There wasn’t another…
Dr. Robert Cialdini: No…
Susan Bratton: Bob Cialdini here before you got there. Now Tom Smith, maybe…
Dr. Robert Cialdini: The people who were their best customers, the people who were staying in their suites, they personalized this gift. It wasn’t for their purposes, it wasn’t a marketing device, it wasn’t advertising, promote their hotel. It was for me. Susan, I have never stopped recommending that hotel to anyone who goes to Hong Kong because they amplified the rule of reciprocity.
Susan Bratton: Another 20,000 people have just heard about the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: So that’s what I’m going to ask that we do.
Susan Bratton: Mm hmm.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: When we think about thinking giving to people… When we go into a room and look around where we want to be influential, if we say to ourselves, “Hmm” – the wrong thing to say is “Hmm, how can help me here?” The right thing to say is “Whom can I help here?”
Susan Bratton: Mmm.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: And then “How can I help that person by giving him or her something that is personalized to that individuals particular circumstances, situation, business conditions at the moment?” If we do that that person will stand ready to give back to us at the highest possible level.
Susan Bratton: Nice. So personalized reciprocation…
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right. So first we give first, and then we make it personal.
Susan Bratton: Nice. All right, we’ll have to think about how we can do that with our products.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Yeah.
Susan Bratton: That’s a stumper for some of us. There was a funny little thing, I think it might’ve been in one of your workshops or someplace, where you were going to answer this question – I was hoping you were going to answer this now. How can you win over your rivals by inconveniencing them?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: It has to do with something that Ben Franklin gave as advice for how to, if you would turn a rival into a friend, an enemy into a compatriot, he said, “Ask them to lend you a book.” What? This seems to go against the rule for reciprocity, which would say “Give them a book”, right. But if they really don’t like you they’re not going to want that book. But if you ask them to lend you a book that you know they have, they’re going to do it. They’re going to say, “All right, I’ll lend you this book. There’s no harm in me lending this book.” But as soon as they’ve done it, they have to say to themselves, “Wait a minute, I just lent a book to Ben. I guess I’m, I guess I don’t think he’s such a bad guy after all.” And then when you’ve returned that book – here’s where the rule of reciprocity comes in – you say, “Here’s that book back. I really enjoyed it. Maybe we can talk about it sometime”, and now you’ve got the opportunity for liking by virtue of similarity. But then you say, “And here’s a book I think you would like”, and now you’ve begun a fruitful exchange with someone who was a dead end in the past, who you never got any kind of response from, where there never was an opportunity for a mutually beneficial cooperation or collaboration. So begin in this odd way that Ben Franklin suggested, ask for something from them – something that will inconvenience them a little bit – and make them think, “Well wait a minute, why would I go out of my way to help this individual? I guess Susan isn’t such a bad person after all in my eyes.” And when you come back with something to give to them, now you’ve got the basis for an interaction that was never possible before.
Susan Bratton: Hmm. It’s funny too; I notice in my industry that there are different clusters of likeminded people and there are some small groups in our industry who are extremely cooperative. I’ll give you an example. I’m in a syndicate, an email, I’m on an email list of a group of competitors who all help each other write their copy, position their products, promote each others products. They’re all basically selling, in the grand scheme of the universe, the same thing to the world…
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Yup.
Susan Bratton: and they all work together to grow the pie. Very interesting. I have another question for you. This is another one I saw in one of your workshop descriptions. What one word can increase your persuasiveness by 50 percent?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: The word ‘because’.
Susan Bratton: Oh, I thought it might be ‘or’ or ‘and’. Okay, tell me about ‘because’.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: It’s the word ‘because’; it’s the case that people need reasons for what they do. They, if you simply…
Susan Bratton: Right, I read about this. Yeah. Okay.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: So there was that great study at Harvard University, somebody came up to people in a line waiting to use the copier…
Susan Bratton: Yeah.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: And if she said, “Can I use the copier because I’m in a hurry?”, well 94 percent of the people agreed to do it, of course; there as a good reason there. If she came up to them and said, “Can I use the copier?” only 63 percent – or “jump ahead of you in line to use the copier” – only 63 percent of them did. So not so surprising there. But here’s the interesting thing: if she came up to them and said, “Can I use the copier because I need to make copies” – which is no reason at all, I mean that’s obvious – now 93 percent were willing to do it. It wasn’t the reason; it was the word ‘because’ that signaled here comes a reason…
Susan Bratton: Yeah, it was a shortcut.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: It was a shortcut.
Susan Bratton: Mm hmm.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: And people responded. So…
Susan Bratton: Because, because, because, because, because… You know, that…
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Of the wonderful things he does.
Susan Bratton: Exactly, making copies. I love it. Thank you for singing along, Bob. Where our time is rapidly going away. I want to talk about affiliate marketers, direct marketers, information product marketers, the people who really use persuasion and wordsmithing at a deep level. Long copy pages, you know, websites full of articles and content. What is it that you think… You see all those things out there; you see them using scarcity, the rule of reciprocation, you see them using contrast – “It could cost this much, but we’re going to give it to you for this much” – you know, the contrast pricing. Small builds, you know. “Get the e-book and we’ll upsell you to the continuity program.”
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right, right.
Susan Bratton: Testimonials, social proof; they’re using everything in your books. And you’re going to go speak to an audience of mavens for persuasion copywriting…
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right.
Susan Bratton: at Affiliate Summit. What are they doing? Where do you see their big mistakes and where do you see opportunity left on the table? Where is it instead of ‘click were’, where is it ‘click away’? What are we doing wrong?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: This is really the basic point of moving from knowledge to implication…
Susan Bratton: Yeah.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: and applications of that knowledge. And I see two mistakes; one is failing to take into account what that lesson that we’ve been talking about throughout today’s interview, making the principle go first. It has to go first. You have to cultivate the earth before you can plant your seeds. It doesn’t matter how good your argument are, is, how good that seed is. If you haven’t cultivated the ground first, if you haven’t prepared it by ensuring that there’s liking there, ensuring that there’s a perception of authority that’s invested in you, of expertise, assuring that there’s credibility, assuring that people see that this is consistent with something that they’re committed to and so on – if you haven’t done that, those seeds are going to fall on stony ground; they’re just not going to pay attention properly to what you have to say. So so much of what happens in those, on those websites and in those content laden messages is a occurring at the wrong time. The timing is wrong. You’ve got to get the principles of influence in place first before you are likely to make the merits of your argument sing. That’s one….
Susan Bratton: So unless I get a hard cell, too hard a cell, try to manipulate you too early.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Yeah.
Susan Bratton: Uh huh.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Yeah. To just bang down the door with all this information before people are willing to be receptive to the information. The second is not adjusting to the times, not recognizing what the conditions are that people are working under right now. This is something that I will be talking about at the Affiliate Summit, persuasion under conditions of uncertainty. We are now in an economic environment that is unfamiliar, unsure, uncertain, volatile, you just can’t predict it, it’s hard to know what’s going on, and our customers are feeling that uncertainty and there’s a tendency to freeze when they are unsure. It’s hard to get them off the fence when they’re just unsure of what they should be doing. As a consequence, I’m going to talk about the three principles of influence of the six that gain special traction and special power for those who use them when people are uncertain. So not just to use a blunder bus, all six of these principles equally. No. Under conditions of uncertainty there are three of these principles that are especially potent. They are the scarcity principle, the authority principle and the consensus or social proof principle. Those three principles reduce uncertainty in people when they are used correctly and allow people to get off the fence and move in our direction.
Susan Bratton: Well I hope you’re going to explain how specifically we can use them right.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: That is definitely the plan.
Susan Bratton: Good. You know what I’ll do then? I’ll blog the results of that so that I can hear your presentation and I’ll blog the implementation piece of it as a carryon to this episode.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Terrific!
Susan Bratton: Perfect! So… Gosh, I just want to get at a couple of other quick little questions. One of the things that you said was – you posed another question – how do you avoid bundling critical moments of power, and this was more, you know, you work with marketers but you work with sales people, you work with leaders, you work with CEO’s, and this was more, I think it has more to do with on the sales side of things. There’s this moment of power and often we undermine ourselves, we’ve gotten people to a certain point and then we take a wrong action and kind of blow up the ground we’ve taken.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right. I’ll give you an example that has to do with the rule for reciprocity for instance. There is a moment of power that we are afforded as soon as someone has said “Thank you.” What do you do with the moment after “Thank you”?
Susan Bratton: Well you don’t act like a sandbagger, I can tell you that from reading your work. You come in strong.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: That’s right. You don’t say, “Hey, and now you owe me one sister.” Right.
Susan Bratton: Exactly.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: What you say is “I was glad to do it because I know if the situation were ever reversed, you’d do the same for me.”
Susan Bratton: Nice.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: You reach into the future…
Susan Bratton: Future pacing.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, with that moment. You don’t try to develop the yes in that moment. You frame that moment so it empowers a future moment when you do need that persons help.
Susan Bratton: “Hey, it was my pleasure. Anytime, if it were me in the future and the tables were turned, I know you’d do the same for me.”
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Exactly. And there’s one other thing that you can say, and that is “Of course. It’s what partners do.”
Susan Bratton: Ah. So you’ve moved them into a new position with you of being a partner.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: And then add the addendum “for one another” - “It’s what partners do for one another” – so you’re not just characterizing yourself as a vessel of resources that you’re pouring into somebody else’s tank. No. “It’s what partners do for one another.”
Susan Bratton: Very nice! You’re setting up the inherent reciprocity.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Exactly right.
Susan Bratton: So resources; you gave me the perfect segway to end the show. As much as I don’t want to end the show, I just want to keep going… It’s been such a delight to have an opportunity to read your book and then talk to you about it. And I’ll tell you, I actually went through, I had the older book – I had Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. I didn’t buy Science and Practice; I want to see how you’ve updated it.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: It’s an updated version about 15 or 20 percent.
Susan Bratton: Yeah. Well I’ll take it because I actually have gone through my sales copy, and I’ve looked at all of the different principles. And I kind of, what I realized was I was kind of using a lot of them just in general, and it enabled me to get I think much tighter. Now I wonder how I’m doing amplifying and activating them. That’ll be, to say I’m going to go back with that new filter and look at what I’m doing. But you have a bible, you’ve written a real bible. But what other resources are there? Who do you read when you’re thinking about behavioral sciences and the, you know, cognitive sciences – brain behavior, patterns, NLP – what are you reading?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: I’m reading some new books in what is called behavioral economics. The taking behavioral science and applying it to economic decision-making. There are two books that I would recommend. The first is called Nudge by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein. The second is called Predictably Irrational…
Susan Bratton: Yeah, Dan Ariely, right?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Dan Ariely.
Susan Bratton: Mm hmm.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: And there’s a third book that is flying under the radar but that I really like; it’s called Made To Stick…
Susan Bratton: Yeah.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Heath and Heath.
Susan Bratton: Yup. That’s the telling a story.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right.
Susan Bratton: You have to tell a story, you have to paint a picture.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: How you do so that the idea sticks.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, it’s an ideamean.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: It has durability and persistence.
Susan Bratton: Now I just ordered a book – I don’t have it here in the studio, my studio is just a small room with a mic and a chair – but it’s called Spent, and it’s another one of those behavioral economics books. Have you heard of it?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Yes.
Susan Bratton: Have you read it?
Dr. Robert Cialdini: I haven’t read it yet.
Susan Bratton: Okay. ‘Cause I might add that to this list, Spent and Nudge. Only if not because they’re both single word titles.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Right.
Susan Bratton: Might be a good one too. Well great. Those are terrific. I really appreciate that, and I would encourage you to do some blogging about the things you keep reading and the good books that you like, ‘cause I have been all over your blog and that’s one of the things I don’t see on there that would be really helpful for us.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: You’re right about that.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, we follow you and we want to know what you’re following.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: You’re right about that. That’s a good suggestion.
Susan Bratton: Free blog post idea, everybody can use that. I love it. Bob, thank you so much for coming on DishyMix. I’m really appreciative of everything you’ve relayed and I’m looking greatly forward to getting more insight and blogging about your Affiliate Summit keynote.
Dr. Robert Cialdini: Well great. I’m looking forward to that summit and I enjoyed our interaction thoroughly.
Susan Bratton: Thank you so much. All right, well you go to meet Dr. Robert Cialdini, author of Influence: Science and Practice and his other book Yes: 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive. I guess I’d start out saying ‘because’. I’m your host, Susan Bratton. Have a great day, and I will look forward to connecting with you next week. Bye-bye.