Persuasion and the art of Social Influencing

The art of persuasion can be traced back to Aristotle and the basics he laid down are true today.

Aristotle

If you want to attract customers through social media you need to cover 3 areas:

Logos

Logos refers to the appeal to logic.
Supplying your customers with information about you and your products helps them evaluate you so ensure you back up your assertions with facts and figures.
Everybody knows 85% of statistics are made up on the spot#1 so ensure you quote reliable sources. These days crowd sourced information such as Wikipedia is generally acceptable unless you author the page you are refering to!

Don’t drown your customer in facts.

It’s rare that anyone makes a decision on facts alone which brings us nicely to….

Ethos

This refers to the trust that your customer feels for you.
The personal charisma of the participants in your social media presence carries significant weight here as does the volume and standing of other customers you can demonstrate.

We all like to feel that others have vetted a supplier before we settle for them as it gives us a sense of comfort and security in our decision. We want to know that others know and accept you as both an expert in what you offer and a trustworthy person or organisation.

Now we have discussed feelings we need to examine the single most important factor the others have been leading to….

Pathos

This refers to an appeal to your customers emotions.

Different people are attracted by different drives – in fact there are thought to be 16 basic drives#2:

Power, independence, curiosity, acceptance, order, saving, honour, idealism, social contact, family, status, vengeance, romance, eating, physical exercise, and tranquillity.

Both logos and ethos work because they allow us to build a sense of confidence in our decision. Being confident in a decision helps you justify and rationalise#3 the decision.

Selling any product or service means deciding which basic drives you consider you will satisfy and aligning your social presence to show the “Social Consumer” how you match that need.

Bottom Line: We make decisions based on what we feel as well as the cold hard facts.

If our head and heart aren’t in the same place we experience “cognitive dissonance” an unpleasant feeling of uncertainty we feel we should resolve before moving forward.


#1 quote from David Mitchell
#2 Steven Reiss PHD – Who Am I – 16 basic desires.
#3 Rationalization in Decision Making

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