Principles of Persuasion: A Practical Guide

To understand how to become an effective sales person we begin with the study of human behavior. Behavior and decision-making have unveiled several powerful principles of persuasion. Persuasion is the key to becoming a great sales person. Dr. Robert Cialdini popularized 6 key principles of persuasion in his 1984 book on the subject. These principles provide a roadmap for understanding how people can ethically influence the choices of others. Let’s explore practical ways to apply each of these principles in various contexts:

1. Reciprocity:
To leverage the reciprocity principle, initiate interactions with acts of kindness or favors. In business, offer value upfront, such as free resources or information, without expecting anything in return. This creates a sense of indebtedness and increases the likelihood of receiving positive responses. By genuinely helping others, you lay the foundation for long-lasting relationships and favorable outcomes. Think of the last time you when into a candy store. The sales person said “welcome to our store” and handed you a free sample. You walked out with a 10-pound box and you were only “window shopping”

2. Scarcity:
Creating a sense of scarcity involves highlighting limited availability or exclusive opportunities. In sales, you can emphasize that a product is in limited supply or only available for a limited time. Mortgage rates are a great example as they move daily. This can trigger a fear of missing out, prompting quicker decision-making. However, ensure that the scarcity is genuine; false scarcity can lead to mistrust and damage your credibility. Your time is your most valuable resource. Treat it as such when scheduling your appointment.

3. Authority:
Establish your credibility by positioning yourself as an authority in your field. Share your expertise through content creation, speaking engagements, or published works. When seeking compliance, provide evidence of your knowledge and experience. Additionally, if possible, collaborate with recognized experts or influencers to lend credibility to your message. Many Mortgage professional know the industry inside and out. Highlight the complexities and how you solve the complexity issue. This is a great starting point for customer engagement

4. Consistency:
Begin by obtaining small commitments that align with your ultimate goal. For instance, if you’re trying to encourage someone to adopt a healthy lifestyle, start by asking them to commit to taking a short walk every day. Once individuals commit to a specific behavior, they are more likely to remain consistent with it over time. Reinforce their commitment by providing positive feedback and tracking progress. Build milestones of success into your conversation with customers. Learn to anticipate the next question and know the answer.

5. Liking:
Forge connections by finding common ground and building rapport. In sales or networking, actively listen to others and show genuine interest in their needs and preferences. Highlight shared interests or experiences to establish a sense of similarity. A warm and friendly demeanor can make others more receptive to your ideas. The sale in the mortgage business begins with the Realtor or other referral partner. Not only do you need to possess the other 5 principles listed here but your referral partners will need to like you as a person. Remember that they will be spending 30 days with you in each escrow.

6. Consensus (Social Proof):
Leverage social proof by showcasing the experiences of others. In e-commerce, include customer reviews and ratings to demonstrate that others have benefited from your products or services. Highlight case studies or success stories to illustrate real-world examples. When individuals see that others are engaging positively, they are more likely to follow suit. Do a good job for one agent and they will tell everyone in the office. The best example of this is an item marked as “customers favorite’ on a restaurant menu. Any Item marked as such as chosen by customers of that location will always out sell the rest of the menu.


While applying these principles, it’s essential to maintain ethical considerations:

Transparency: Be open and honest in your communication. Avoid misleading or deceptive tactics.

Empathy: Understand the needs and concerns of the individuals you’re trying to persuade. Tailor your approach to address their specific situation.

Long-Term Relationships: Focus on building enduring relationships rather than aiming for short-term gains. Trust and authenticity are crucial for sustained influence.

In conclusion, understanding and applying these principles of persuasion can enhance your ability to communicate effectively and ethically. By employing these principles in your interactions, you can create win-win scenarios where both parties benefit. Remember that genuine persuasion is about fostering informed decisions and building positive connections, ultimately leading to more harmonious and productive relationships. These are the foundation stones to all your activities.

Help somebody win today!