If you’re as fascinated by persuasive people as I am, this post is for you. We’ll explore what sets them apart from the rest of the pack and what they do differently to get what they want.
The art of persuasion is about more than just getting what you want. The best persuaders approach each situation with an understanding of others’ perspectives, needs, and desires.
So, without delay, here are things that highly persuasive individuals do differently:
1) They understand their audience
If you don’t understand the needs and wants of the people you’re talking to, there’s almost no way to persuade them to do something for you.
The most persuasive people take their time to understand the needs, values, and desires of the people they’re trying to persuade.
They adapt their messages and approach to fit the perspectives and concerns of their audience.
2) They choose the right moment
Timing is also incredibly important when you want to convince someone. If someone isn’t in the right headspace to hear your message, all your effort will be in vain.
Persuasive people know this and understand the importance of timing. They choose the right moment to present their ideas or make their requests.
They will consider factors such as their audience’s receptiveness, the situation’s context, and any external influences that may affect the outcome.
3) They craft their arguments
Sometimes simply asking a person a favor will do it. Other times, you’ll need to carefully formulate your requests.
The most persuasive people craft their arguments and proposals in a way that highlights the benefits, addresses potential objections, and appeals to the emotions and logic of their audience.
They simply and effectively focus on the positive outcomes and offer practical solutions.
4) They build trust and credibility
There’s a reason cold calling is the worst for both the seller and the person they’re calling.
Don’t you just hate it when you get a phone call out of the blue from a person you don’t know trying to persuade you into buying something from them you don’t even need?
Persuasive people build trust and credibility by sharing their expertise and providing evidence or examples to support their claims.
They also try to demonstrate consistency in their words and actions and want to be seen as knowledgeable and reliable.
That way, they build a rapport and a connection making it easier to influence you. Plus, this next thing helps too.
5) They offer incentives or rewards
Incentives and rewards are powerful tools for those trying to influence you.
Just think of all the loyalty programs companies shower us with, or sales commissions and workplace bonuses for employees, as well as government tax breaks or rebates, to encourage certain behaviors.
Persuasive people do that on a smaller scale by offering incentives or rewards to motivate others to accept their proposals.
These incentives can be tangible (bonuses, promotions) or intangible (recognition, increased responsibility), providing additional motivation for obedience.
Those of us that are married or in a relationship also know how far incentives can go.
In simple terms, you scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours.
6) They use logic
The next tool in their arsenal is logic. They will use logical reasoning with you by providing facts, data, research findings, or expert opinions to support their arguments.
By presenting compelling evidence, they strengthen their case and increase the chances of convincing you.
By illustrating how a particular course of action will lead to specific results, persuasive people make a bulletproof logical case for their proposal that you’d be foolish to dismiss.
7) They also use storytelling
While logic and rationality are essential, persuasive people also understand the role of emotions in decision-making.
Everyone loves a great story. They help illustrate points in a way that is emotionally engaging.
For that reason, persuasive people will use stories every chance they get to convey their message more interestingly and engagingly.
I, too, try to use personal anecdotes any chance I get as they help readers relate easier to what I’m trying to illustrate.
8) They repeat key points
Repetition of key points is another critical element in the art of persuasion. This technique is based on the concept that hearing something multiple times can lead to better understanding, thereby increasing the message’s persuasiveness.
For instance, your boss might communicate a key point in a meeting, repeat it in a follow-up email, and reinforce it during a team workshop.
They might also use rhetorical or checking-in questions to repeat important points. For instance, they’ll ask, “Does everyone understand the importance of point X?”
9) They use the anchoring technique
Anchoring is a well-known technique you probably used many times without knowing it was a thing.
For instance, let’s say you’re selling a used car and want a higher price. When you start the negotiation, you might mention a higher price than what you actually expect to get.
This higher price becomes the anchor, influencing the buyer’s perception of what they should pay for the car.
Using the anchoring technique is like setting a starting point that influences the rest of the discussion.
It’s like throwing an anchor into the discussion or negotiation, affecting how people think about what’s fair or reasonable.
10) They keep it simple
But above all, they keep things simple. They know that people are more likely to be persuaded by things they understand clearly.
For that reason, they break down complex ideas or information into simpler, understandable pieces.
For example, instead of detailing the complex tech specs of a new smartphone, Apple simply explains how the features of their new iPhone provide a smoother user experience and convenience to the potential buyer.
We also have to differentiate persuasive people from manipulators. That’s why you need to know the warning signs you’re dealing with a manipulator and how to respond.