Maximize Your Influence

Persuasion Vomit (Data Dump)

Many times, when we are trying to be persuasive, we want to highlight all the perks and plusses. It's only natural. Wouldn't helping someone see the potential gains of your product or service be a good thing? Yes, but here is the issue: Your audience will buy for their own reasons and only their reasons. They don't care about why you like the product or service. They don't care how much you know about it—don’t bury them in detail. The more you spout off about features, the more your audience mentally checks out.

When you want to draw attention to the benefits of a product or service, the best thing to do is uncover the features or benefits your audience is looking for first. Why spend precious time and energy highlighting things they don't care about? Let them tell you what they're looking for, and then center your discussion around those few key points. It is critical to remember that most people already know what they want. In fact, your audience's mindset often is looking for reasons not to buy. It is a natural defense mechanism. They're thinking, "How do I make sure I'm not getting myself into something I'll regret? What could go wrong?"

How managers can spark motivation

There is another way spouting and spewing too much information can backfire: You might actually feature something they're not interested in or something they even see as a drawback. Why give them reasons not to buy? Again, let them tell you what they're looking for. After you've discussed what they care about, after they've made the decision to buy, then and only then should you fill in any remaining blanks with other benefits or features. Don't oversell by cluttering or distracting the few most important key points.
Ask yourself the following questions to determine whether or not you ever vomit or data dump:

· Do you interrupt your audience in your eagerness to highlight another point before they have finished?
· Are you worried about making the sale or satisfying a new customer?
· Do you ever lose their eye contact or get a glazed look?
· Does your audience seem overwhelmed or confused?
· Are you concentrating on what you need to say next instead of listening?
· Do their nonverbal signals tell you they are getting ready to run?
· Are you talking about yourself instead of discovering their needs?

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Direct download: Podcast_244_-_How_to_Overcome_Your_Persuasion_Vomit_Data_Dump.mp3
Category:sales -- posted at: 6:30am CDT

 Psychological Power: The Mind Game

Psychological Power is the ability people have to influence you while disguising their true intentions. People who are adept at using Psychological Power seek to alter another individual’s perceptions. Two (the other 10 are on the podcast) of  the most common Psychological Power techniques are outlined below.

# 1: Time Pressure      

People are slow at making decisions because they’re afraid of making mistakes. Negotiators hate to leave deals open-ended too long because the more time passes, the more time their prospects have to think of all the reasons why they should walk away. The reverse is also true: The more quickly you get a commitment out of your prospects, the more likely it is they’ll follow through. Basically, people who utilize this psychological tactic are leveraging the moments when emotion is high and judgment is suspended. It’s the “get ’em energized, seal the deal while they’re still soaring” mentality. It is from this mentality that we get promotions like “This offer only good for next hour” and “This offer won’t last long.”

 I remember once negotiating a contract for the marketing department of a big corporation. I had a million other responsibilities weighing on me, so I felt rushed to hammer out the details of the contract that morning. The person I was negotiating with, on the other hand, was in no hurry whatsoever and had nowhere else to go. We bantered back and forth for six hours and still had not reached a resolution on a contract we were both happy with. My urgency to leave the meeting affected the terms I was finally able to get.

#2: Unpredictability

Sometimes, negotiators try to use unpredictability to throw the other person off. Humans are creatures of habit; we love the familiar and predictable. We love routine. Hence, when something unpredictable happens, we feel out of control. Think of a person you know who has an unpredictable personality. You never quite know if s/he is going to be happy or angry, thankful or resentful, elated or depressed.

 How do you feel when you’re around this person? People sometimes do this on purpose to intimidate your or to feel a sense of control over you. Some negotiators will work through lunch, yell, lose control or be seen tearing down a colleague. These examples will often throw rookie prospects off guard. Be aware of these psychological negotiating tactics that could make you feel intimated or out of control.

 Why Can Some Politicians Lie and Get Away With It?

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Direct download: Podcast_243_-_Dark_and_Dirty_Influence_Techniques.mp3
Category:sales -- posted at: 6:30am CDT

Anger is a secondary emotion. A prospect's anger is usually an indicator that something else is askew and that he needs or wants attention.  When we are angry – we want attention or action now. You can assist in diminishing his anger by determining the key issue he is upset about. It is also often effective to ask for his help, opinions, or advice.

 This will usually diffuse his anger or even change his attitude and demeanor completely. In some circumstances, you may want to use anger to make a certain point or to evoke a certain reaction. However when someone is angry they are more likely to blame someone else. In their mind it is not their fault. When they are sad they will usually blame the situation.

Writing Secrets That Sell

 When people become angry they tend to rely on intuition or an educated guess.  Anger triggers non analytical information processing.   Anger causes us to use mental shortcuts to decide if the argument is right.   

An experiment was done that induced anger. The participants that were angry tended to discriminate between weak and strong persuasive arguments more than those in a neutral mood.  In other words, those that were angry tended to be more influenced by heuristic cues (intuition) than those in a sad or neutral mood.

Direct download: Podcast_242_-_Dealing_With_Angry_People.mp3
Category:sales -- posted at: 6:30am CDT

The Brick Wall of Resistance

Has this ever happened to you? You enter a retail store and you're approached by a sharply dressed persuader. You are interested in buying, but the salesperson is a little aggressive. You get an alarming feeling in the pit of your stomach and then do what many of your customers do to you. You lie! You say, "I'm just looking; I'll come back later," or "It's too expensive," or "I have to talk to my spouse before I decide." What you're really thinking is "I don't like this guy," or "I don't trust her," or "Something didn't feel quite right." In the end, you never go back to this store, you never recommend it, and neither the store owner nor the persuader ever knows why. This is a large brick in the Brick Wall of Resistance.

 This obstacle is truly a silent persuasion killer. Most people will never say anything to you to alert you to the fact they are feeling this way. They are more comfortable lying to you—so they don't hurt your feelings. They walk away and simply never deal with you again. The reason this obstacle is such a killer is because we don't even realize we're doing it. We are offending people and don't even know it. You may think you're just being friendly or enthusiastic, but be careful. While friendliness and enthusiasm are great attributes, if there is even so much as a hint of force, deception, hype, or selling underlying any of it, you've pretty much sunk the deal.

 Audiences are tough. Ever-smarter consumers have built a lot of resistance to the old style of persuading; many people have a brick wall of resistance up before you've even started your presentation. They assume you're going to be the sleazy, manipulative sales guy before you've even had a chance to speak. They are all ready to resist you before you start.

What do you do to overcome this tendency? Your persuasion attempts must be nonthreatening and very natural. Forget loud and flashy. That strategy only encourages resistance. And most definitely forget about high pressure.

Not only does that solidify the wall of resistance in that particular moment, but the wall will increase in size. When people feel they have been pressured, bullied, or coerced into buying or doing something they don't need or want, they are resentful. They will never do business with you again. They will detest you for "tricking," "manipulating," "selling," or "forcing" them. They will bad-mouth you to all of their friends and family—even to people they don't know! You can end up losing not only this one person but, as the grapevine goes, potentially hundreds of others as well.


Great persuaders have cultivated a sixth sense when it comes to the "push and pull" aspect of persuasion. You must encourage without pushing. Entice, but don't ensnare. You have to sense and then predict, based upon knowledge, instinct, experience, and nonverbal cues, what you can do and how your audience will respond. With this sensitivity, which you can learn, there won't be any smacking head first into the brick wall of resistance.

Direct download: Podcast_241_-_How_You_Are_Selling_For_Your_Competition.mp3
Category:sales -- posted at: 6:30am CDT