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Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion [Paperback]

Robert B Cialdini
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (156 customer reviews)

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Book Description

July 15 1993
Some people just won't take no for an answer. In Influence, Dr. Robert Cialdini explains the six psychological principles that drive our powerful impulse to comply to the pressures of others and shows how we can defend ourselves against manipulation (or put the principles to work in our own interest).

Influence guarantees two things: Readers will never say yes again when they really mean no, and they'll be more persuasive than ever before.

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From Amazon

Arguably the best book ever on what is increasingly becoming the science of persuasion. Whether you're a mere consumer or someone weaving the web of persuasion to urge others to buy or vote for your product, this is an essential book for understanding the psychological foundations of marketing. Recommended.


For marketers, this book is among the most important books written in the last ten years. (Journal of Mariketing Research)

Influence should be required reading for all business majors. (Journal of Retailing)

This book will strike chords deep in the hearts and psyches of all of us. (Best Sellers Magazine)

The material in Cialdini’s Influence is a proverbial gold mine. (Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
I GOT A PHONE CALL ONE DAY FROM A FRIEND WHO HAD RECENTLY opened an Indian jewelry store in Arizona. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and eye-opening book. Buy and Read it! Nov. 7 2003
What are the factors that cause one person to say yes to another person? Which techniques most effectively use these factors to bring about such compliance?
Prof. Cialdini found six such techniques: Reciprocation, Commitment, Social Proof, Liking, Authority and Scarcity. Author explains why they work, and how to say no to peddlers that want to exploit you using them.
The book is well written, the style is simple, there's ample use of appropriate anecdotes so you can better remember what's most important.
The six techniques are discussed "in terms of their function in the society and in terms of how their enormous force can be commissioned by a compliance professional who deftly incorporates them into requests for purchases, donations, concessions, votes..."; yes, 'votes', so I believe it's an important reason for you, citizen, to learn those six tricks, in your own interest! They exploit our 'automatic behavior patterns' (three pages to explain this, don't worry!), and they make us terribly vulnerable to anyone who does know how they work.
I'll break down how Prof. Cialdini examines the rules, I'll use rule number one, "Reciprocation" as an example.
1 - Definition of the rule: "The rule says that we should try to repay, in kind, what another person has provided us."
2 - Rationale (why it works and why we, as humans, always stick to it): The development of this behaviour "meant that one person could give something (for example, food, energy, care) to another with confidence that it was not being lost.(...) Sophisticated and coordinated systems of aid, gift giving, defense, and trade became possible, bringing immense benefit to the societies that possessed them.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very good and enjoyable read Nov. 1 2003
There are only a few books that after reading, you will really find them useful and understandable, and Influence is one of them. (The others are 7 Habbits of Highly Effective People, Good to Great). The book is full of research studies that can back up the six 'weapons' of influence, while at the same time is written in a style enjoyable and easy-to-remember. Recommend to all people, no matter you are a salesman, marketer, manager, or even parents.....everyone.
Note that there is another book called Influence (4th Ed) by the same author. The name is a little bit different (also different ISBN) but they are the SAME book with revised photos and foreword only. I thought they were 2 differents ones.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic April 23 2010
Great book, great research, well written - it is a must own for any compliance professional. If your in sales and you have not read this book buy it now, you will not go wrong. I first tried to avoid buying this book simply because there are so many summaries online, and a lecture by the author on the topic of Influence. However, after I bought this book I was pleased to read all the research put into it. You will enjoy this book!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars are you getting tricked into buying something? March 9 2004
Why do you buy the things you do? This book shows you the ruthless tactics that marketers use to get you to buy their products. It was a real eye opener.
For example: I used to think that the toys stores were out of stock of their best toys during December, because of huge demand. Now I realize that they are doing this on purpose. Why? Because they know the kids won't forget about this toy and they will come back in January to buy it when they get it "back in stock". Meanwhile during the holiday season their parents have to buy them "something" so they make even more money. So when you see them advertising a new toy in November know that they won't have it in by December because they want to trick you.
Read about many more tricks they are using on you and how you can overcome them by reading this great book.
Zev Saftlas, Author of Motivation That Works: How to Get Motivated and Stay Motivated
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent! Highly recommended. Feb. 28 2004
This book is primarily about how marketers and sales professional manipulate our minds for their benefits. The topics covered are extensive, including contrast principle, mimic tricks of photuris/blenny, rule for reciprocation, reciprocal concessions (rejection then retreat technique), consistency (willingness to believe in the correctness of a difficult choice, once made), foot in the door technique, committing power of public/written statements, manipulation and exploitation of customers' self image, principle of social proof (draw of the crowd vs pluralistic ignorance when people feel most uncertain and unfamiliar), effect of repeated contact on liking (condition dependent), application of common goals for conflict solving, good cop/bad cop ploy, conditioning and association, the strength of authority pressure, scarcity principle (limited freedom to something makes it more desirable), Romeo and Juliet effect, etc etc. What makes it so outstanding from it's kind is that 1) it's so well written with many vivid examples and few jargons that most readers with no or little psychology background can enjoy it much. 2)In the end of each chapter there's a section named "how to say no", something you seldom find in other psychology book. That's certainly a plus coz knowledge without application amounts to nothing.
In a word, a page turner and a must read particulary for everything in the city jungle.
Remarks: I like the opening adages of some chapters much. To quote some:
Chapter 3 Committment and Consistency: It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end. Da Vinci

Chapter 4 Influence: Where all think alike, no one thinks very much. Lippmann

Chapter 5 Liking: The main work of a trial attorney is to make a jury like his client. Darrow

Chapter 7: The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost. G.K. Chesterton
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good book.
Published 11 days ago by Guangtao Cai
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I wish I had read this BEFORE I was sold my new car.
Published 2 months ago by R Cross
5.0 out of 5 stars Know more about ourselves
This book helps us to know more about ourselves.
Published 2 months ago by Steven Choi
5.0 out of 5 stars Mind Opener
It's amazing how Dr. Cialdini has documented our psychology in so clear and vivid manner. Enjoyed every bit of it.
Published 3 months ago by Paul Cheema
5.0 out of 5 stars Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
An excellent book by a knowledgeable author.

After reading it, I discovered that Dr. Cialdini is a famous person in his field and found references to his works in other... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Alexander
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply amazing
My eyes have been opened and my mind had been blown to pieces reading this book. You learn so much and realize how many of these tactics have been used on you without you even... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Alex Garcia
4.0 out of 5 stars Extended Basics
Provides some useful tools/insights into things that influence us. The influences extrapolated in this book can easily be summarized onto 1 page making them easy to remember or... Read more
Published 7 months ago by kris canadic
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good read
This book was a good read. Written pretty formally (which I like), with references to studies from the scientific literature, as well as examples that we can relate to, or that we... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Adoemon
5.0 out of 5 stars No review's amazing
I would say the next step up from books by Dale Carnegie, Cialdini uses modern examples to showcase the "short-cuts" of every day human interactions in short, well... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Michael
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good book
learn a lot from this book, about psychology and human behavior. Which is really impressive. Highly recommended this book. Especially who like psychology.
Published 12 months ago by kezhigong
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