Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion Paperback – Jul 15 1993
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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 markters, 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.
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Top Customer Reviews
Cialdini lists 6 factors that influence our behaviour: consistency, reciprocation, social proof, authority, liking, and scarcity. These explain why we buy what we do, how we vote, how Chinese POW camps worked, why giving people electric shocks or hazing them to join a group makes them value the group more, how to fundraise, why we say we won, referring to a sports team, while they lost, why banning cleaning products containing phosphates increased how effect people believed them to be, and many, many, many other factors.
Influence has been on my list for a while, and I’ve only just gotten around to reading it. I shouldn’t have taken so long: I can’t recommend this book highly enough. It’s the best guide to behavioural economics I’ve read, written when behavioural economics wasn’t much more than a dream in the minds of people like Kahneman, Tversky, and Thaler. It’s fascinating and feels almost comprehensive in its discussion of the factors that influence our behaviour, and provides useful, insightful examples and commentary. My only complaint is that each section ends with a discussion of how to avoid the bias, and it does feel a bit out of date: using modern terminology, he basically just advises us to engage system 2 each time. Still, well worth the read, and definitely a classic.
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.Read more ›
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
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
Most recent customer reviews
Simple and instantly useful for family, friends, sales, children, and your own life. This is one you will read and re-read to gain as much from it as possible.Published 3 months ago by Sean Horsfall
This is a good book that tries to reveal and show you how to acknowledge the automatic responses we have to things we see in our lives. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Lincoln Penner
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