These days I have taken up, after a long time, the book by Robert Cialdini: “The weapons of persuasion, how and why we end up saying yes”. And as happens when I reread the great classics, I found new shades.
New points of reflection for those who, like me, deal with online content, and topics ranging from pure and simple writing to SEO copywriting. Without forgetting the macro area of content marketing.
But how does Robert Cialdini influence my work? His book illustrates several rules that can influence audience behavior. Until you convince him and take him in your direction. They are not magic formulas but small attentions that can make the difference when you decide to open a blog A few examples? Here are some points from Robert Cialdini that you need to evaluate.
The Topic Of This Post
- 1 Reciprocity and the theory of the gift
- 2 Focus on commitment and consistency
- 3 Social proof works
- 4 Use authority in your favor
- 5 Never forget sympathy when communicating
- 6 Scarcity and sales: a perfect match
- 7 Robert Cialdini: how do you use the rules of persuasion?
Reciprocity and the theory of the gift
One of the most important passages in the book: when faced with an unexpected and unsolicited gift, people are willing to return the pleasure. Even with something more precious than your gift. Of course, there are no definitive certainties and rules but this is a mechanism that you can observe in everyday life.
We are always well disposed towards those who make an unexpected and useful gift. But, as Marcell Mauss’s gift theory suggests, there is no such thing as a gift. Every kind gesture always requires a counterpart.
A pledge that can be material or immaterial. This scheme can be declined on your blog by dedicating a page to the publication of free content for readers, the famous lead magnet.
Maybe an ebook, a series of free images, a collection of data, or more. In return, you can ask for an email contact, which is crucial for lead generation, or sharing. With a good Digital PR activity, you can even focus on link earning. An essential prerequisite for the success of all this: the quality of the gift.
Focus on commitment and consistency
People tend to be linear with their ideas, values , and established beliefs. They follow a foundation, they love to be consistent because this creates less fatigue and cognitive work. There are mental shortcuts that we want and need to take. This is why we are faced with another persuasive lever.
Micro copywriting lends itself to this purpose. For example, you can activate the meta description to bring out the individual’s need to be consistent with their needs: here is a concrete example.
Do you want to increase blog visits or are you already successful enough? I already know what the answer is, that’s why here I have collected my tips for giving visibility to your content.
As you can see from this text, the reader is asked if he wants to obtain a concrete advantage. And it gives you a solution to get it. Would you be able to confirm the opposite by giving up that particular plus that maybe you were already looking for with particular attention? Difficult to resist, you have to admit it without problems.
The second example concerns the call to action and considers two alternatives: yes, I want this result and I don’t need it because I’m already fine with it. Considering that the strategic benefit would be important, would it be consistent for you to deny the evidence? These techniques work, fear not.
Social proof works
Social proof suggests that people are leaning towards action when they have role models. When they can count on a foothold, an example to follow. And to be exploited to have an informative summary that can help make decisions. How to use this in insurance blogging?
- Celebrity endorsement
- Social counter
- Number of comments
The first example is perfect for a landing page in the pages useful for acquiring a lead. Having the opinions of those who have already tried the product or service is very important for those who have to make a decision. Especially if those who leave their opinion are recognizable, in line with the target
The rating, the stars with average opinions, summarizes this principle with simple elements for the user to decipher. Visual and figures are immediate elements, they avoid the burden of reading. And this Amazon knows it well.
For posts, I suggest two useful elements for social proof: the number of shares and comments in the foreground. These elements allow the reader to move towards two actions that help the content emerge. The greater the number of shares and comments, the more the influence on the audience will be accentuated.
Use authority in your favor
People are, rightly, influenced by authority. That is the ability of a name to convey certain values. If a claim has been left by someone who is recognized as trustworthy and professional in a field it will have more influence than that of a stranger.
This principle can be added to testimonials, so when you choose the opinions for your landing page you will use those of the people who have authority towards the target you want to reach. Or you can define these step-in posts, asking several experts to leave their opinion on the topic.
Never forget sympathy when communicating
Sympathy is understood in its classic meaning, in creating a bond with similar people. Because it is easier to communicate with those who recognize you as an interlocutor with similarities. Use Online Writing to Make Connections: Use a friendly tone of voice, don’t think you should please everyone but only a group of people. Learn more, create reader personas and use a communication capable of creating sympathy.
Scarcity and sales: a perfect match
The public is sensitive to the issue of scarcity. In reality, this lever has always been one of the most used to sell products and services, since the first telesales has suggested that this was: “An offer valid only for today”. But that then came back the same the next day. How to put all this into practice on the blog?
First, the landing pages of events and promotions can get good results by indicating limited periods and places, often inserting real timers that show a countdown. Just like Booking does, which gives a limited time to the offeror shows you how many people are looking at the same room.
But I prefer the scarcity in the title of the post. After respecting the SEO optimizations in the title tag and giving the right information, you can raise these elements to improve the click-through rate and visits by suggesting advantages in terms of optimization of scarce resources. I’m talking about money and time.
Above you can see one example out of many that give a clear indication: people are always looking for solutions to recover scarce assets. And to get the best possible result. Your task? Satisfying this need without selling smoke, Robert Cialdini agrees on this.
Robert Cialdini: how do you use the rules of persuasion?
In reality, to get the best out of these techniques, I must underline two essential points: the study of the target and the underlying honesty. To make the most of these levers you need to know the people in front of you, otherwise, the knowledge of these elements suggested by Robert Cialdini becomes useless.
Just as it is superfluous to use the tricks listed to deceive people. Indeed, in the long run, you risk damaging your name and making yourself not credible in the public eye. Do you want this? I don’t think so, so it’s better to work on the credibility and careful use of these techniques. Do you agree?