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How sensitive are you to advertisements, advertisements and convincing sales stories? You don’t see it, but we are influenced by all kinds of things in our daily lives.

You probably know the trucks of, for example, hotel chains and with texts such as: “one room available now” and “a lot of benefits”. Another example is a commercial in which a dentist with a white coat recommends a whitening toothpaste. We are tempted in many more other ways to make purchases.

You would rather not be influenced, because you want to be in control of what you do or buy. From the point of view of entrepreneurs, it is very interesting to use influencing. This allows you to tempt your target group to buy your product (s) or use your service (s). In 2001, professor of psychology Robert Cialdini published six scientifically supported seduction techniques. I discuss these six principles with you and give a number of examples.



Social evidence has to do with the opinions and experiences of others. â€œIf everyone does it, then it must be good.” When your friends do or have done something that you are not yet doing, then social pressure is exerted on you. Social pressure is one of the best ways to convince your visitors. More than 70% of people are influenced by the opinions and experiences of friends or acquaintances.

Think about it, you probably went to eat at a restaurant because friends or family recommended it.

You can use social evidence as follows:

  • Reviews, many good reviews give the impression that a product or service must be good.
  • Numbers, for example a figure for your product or service, the number of people who have already purchased your service or the number of products sold.
  • Percentages, for example a high percentage of successful students or perhaps a percentage of satisfied customers.

Authority has to do with expertise. As an entrepreneur you want your target group to see you as an expert. You want to be so expert that others will never question your communication.

The aforementioned example of the dentist and the whitening toothpaste is based on this authority principle. In his white coat, the dentist looks like an expert and the product must be good. Is this still true when the toothpaste is recommended by a teenager? This probably affects you much less.

You can use authority as follows:

  • The mention of quality marks, awards and research results. For example, the best retail chain in the Netherlands.
  • Videos or quotes from experts help you with your position as an expert. We use this principle ourselves because Facebook recommends our training.

Scarcity has to do with the fear of losing something or being late for something. I already mentioned it in the example above of They use this principle in several areas. “Now only one room available.” “The last room was booked 2 hours ago.” Scarcity is also used by webshops such as and In physical stores, all products are never on the shelf. You buy pants earlier when there is only one in your size and you really like it.

You can use scarcity as follows:

  • Specify limited availability, for example 1 seat available.
  • A temporary offer, for example this is the last day or only valid today.
  • Use the auction principle. Because more people bid along, the urge to want to win becomes greater. For example,
  • Make the product exclusive. When a product is temporarily or more difficult to obtain, they seem more valuable. Watch this out, it can also be counterproductive.

Commitment and consistency has to do with keeping your promise (towards yourself). Whoever says A will also say B. When you are on the beach and the person next to you asks you to watch his things while he is away for a while you will do this because you have made this appointment. 95% of people adhere to this agreement.

You can use commitment and consistency as follows:

  • The foot-in-the-door technique. Have your target audience say yes to a small request before you make a larger request. For example, first have a page follow before you ask to receive the newsletter.
  • Low-ball technology. You first ask for commitment from the other person and then change the deal / agreement. I am not a fan of this technique myself.

Sympathy has to do with appreciation. People have more sympathy for people we know than for people or companies they don’t know. In addition, whether or not we like the other person plays a major role. We prefer to say ‘yes’ to people we like. Finally, we have more sympathy for: people with a good appearance, people who look like us and people who give compliments.

You can use sympathy as follows:

  • Reviews and positive experiences (from famous people) create more sympathy for your company.
  • Make sure your campaign is shared via share buttons.
  • Use your ‘about us’ page to create more sympathy.
  • Develop content in which the visitor recognizes himself. Use photos that visitors can identify with.
  • Regular contact under pleasant circumstances creates sympathy.
  • Give compliments.

Reciprocity has to do with giving something back, a consideration. When you get something from someone else, you tend to give something back. A friend treats you to lunch, you feel obliged to thank him or her by giving something back.

You can use reciprocity as follows:

  • Give away a free product
  • Provide a free service
  • Receive a discount

By giving away free products, offering a free service or offering a discount, everyone will feel obliged to give something back to you.

These six principles are great tools to use in your campaign. Of course they don’t give a full guarantee that you will have more customers, but they can give buyers a push in the right direction.

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