Persuasion Primer

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Some people seem to have a knack for persuading people to do what they want. They just ask and they receive! Persuasion is an art form that can be learnt and this report will cover various ways you can use friendly persuasion to get what you want.

There is a correct way to go about this and of course you don’t want to come off as a jerk!

Arlene Dickinson of Dragons Den fame says this about persuasion:

“Persuasion is an excellent test of character. What you will do and say, how far you’ll go to convince others, reveals a lot about the strength and reliability of your moral compass… Good persuaders are authentic… honest… seeking a win-win… “

Persuasion is used in many different situations including sales pitches, election campaigns, advertising and public service campaigns. When you watch television commercials you are often being urged to stop smoking, drinking and using drugs. These commercials are ways of persuading you to change your habits.

One huge point that we want to make here is that persuasion is totally different to manipulation. Persuasion is gently convincing a person to do something for you. Whereas manipulation uses force or aggression to a certain point to achieve this. You can manipulate a person against their will to do something. This is definitely not what this report is about. If you ever find yourself beginning to force your opinions or ideas onto someone then you have gone way beyond persuasion. So please keep this in mind.


The best way to define the word ‘persuasion’ is changing someone’s behavior in order to get them to think, feel or do as you would like them to. Persuasion falls under the realm of influence. The main difference is that persuasion requires verbal communication while influence does not.

In order for you to successfully persuade someone there are several things you will need to do.

  • Know exactly what it is you want them to do or
  • Know the person – do you know exactly who they are, their likes and dislikes and what their opinions are on certain subjects and
  • What needs does this person have?
  • Place yourself in their shoes and think from their
  • Listen intently to the person and show that you understand what they are saying and where they are coming

When you have all of these things in place you can then start to work on actively persuading them into thinking, feeling or doing as you would like them to.


To do this successfully you need to build a clear path of action by using tools if necessary. These tools would be facts, evidence and stories which you know they can relate to. Plus you always want to have their best interests at heart, in other words, you know what is good for them!

One of your first steps is to find interests that you and the person in question share. Some questions to ask yourself include:

  1. Do they want to form a long lasting friendship with you?
  2. Are they interested in developing a working relationship?
  3. What common goals do you both share?

You will find persuasive measures being used all around you today. The internet, newspapers, radio and television are just examples of mediums being used for persuasive methods, plus these particular tools allow these messages to be spread very rapidly indeed.

Marketing is a billion dollar industry that incorporates persuasive messages. They take time and effort to develop subtle campaigns that persuade you to their way of thinking. The majority of the time you won’t even realize that you are being persuaded into something.

It is said that the average person today in the U.S. is subject to at least 300 messages per day from advertisers, if not more. Some studies have calculated this to be up around the 3,000 mark, depending on where people live.


The best way to use persuasion for your business is to concentrate on who you are as a person. Instead of focusing on how to want people to perceive you. You need to overcome any personal fears and obstacles that may be holding you back. Once you have done this your path will be much clearer as will your persuasive skills.

One of your first steps in business is to build trust with your fellow workers. You need to develop a credible relationship at work so that others will want to automatically follow in your footsteps.

If you are aiming to climb the ladder at work then one of the first things you need to do is to become highly skilled and knowledgeable in your job. This will help you define yourself as an expert in a particular field or area.

To do this successfully you may need to spend the time and effort to educate yourself outside of your working hours. Yes this will take time and could even cost you some money but if it helps you reach your goals then it will be worth it in the end.

When you can successfully demonstrate that you are indeed an expert in your field, people will automatically start to sit up and take notice of you. This in turn leads to you being able to get what you want by using friendly persuasion.

This will take time and practice to achieve and is something which you should focus on every day. Take advantage of training programs to gain experience so that when you discuss this topic people acknowledge your expertise.


You have no doubt heard the expression ‘you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours’. This basically means that if you do something for me I will do something similar for you.

This can be seen in social media today. When you Tweet a message people are more likely to retweet yours if you have done the same for them. If you Like a Facebook Page you expect people to Like yours when you put up a new one.

These are all methods of persuasion and if you include this type of marketing in your business you will create a following effortlessly. With that said your focus should be on retweeting, reposting or Liking fan pages because you actually do like them. Not just because you want the favor returned at some point.

You want to avoid self promotion at all costs and this will not help you achieve your goals. In fact it will do the opposite and make people want to run from you.

In this section we want to cover Social Proof as this is a huge part of getting what you want by being persuasive. Every business owner wants to run a popular blog or send out messages that get retweeted all over the place. The purpose of this is that it reinforces the message that you are an authority online. Who doesn’t want to have tons of followers and fans?

All of this retweeting is called social proof and helps to create your business network. To build a legion of happy followers you need to provide them with content that is worthy and informative. By concentrating on this aspect you will develop a happy army who will automatically follow you.

The next time your content gets retweeted, liked or shared take this as a compliment and keep developing your authority. It only takes a minute to thank people for sharing your content and a quick tweet thank people will be well received.

As you become an authority figure in your business you will find that your income increases substantially. When you get to this point you can send out an email promoting an affiliate product knowing that you will get plenty of sales.

At this point you have built what is known as like, trust and respect from your followers. When you suggest they buy something they will do so without thinking twice just because the recommendation came from you.

To be successfully at persuading others to get what you want in your business you should always keep the following points in mind:

  • Concentrate on providing value
  • Thank and appreciate your followers
  • Make a point of using those social sites that you set up for your business
  • Always have good intentions and be honest
  • Take the time to build a solid relationship with everyone


Whether you are talking with friends, co-workers or in front of a large crowd you always want to speak with authority. If you believe in what you are saying then others will believe in you too.

Use the correct type of language for the situation and always be clear and respectful. Don’t ever insult or blame others either. Always stay professional and do not let any type of feedback upset you. Sometimes this can be difficult but you must resist the temptation to start arguing or becoming forceful with anyone.

This can be seen in this quote by Charles L. Karrass:

“In business, you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.”

If you want to study persuasive speaking then you should study a good speaker. You will want to notice how they use body language to communicate to their audience.

The following are some great tips you can use when speaking with the aim of persuading your audience.

  1. If you are speaking while standing you always want to stand with your feet about shoulder width apart. Concentrate of having your feet planted solidly into the ground and actually try to feel as though your feet are buried under the
  2. If you must walk or move while speaking then do so with a purpose. Walk the length of the stage and direct your focus to the audience. It can help to have visual aids that you walk to in order to point things out to your listeners.
  3. When it comes to gestures you don’t want to over gesture. Moving your hands about like crazy often implies that you are feeling nervous. Remember your goal is to come across confident and strong. Try to gesture with strong movements and only when it adds to the conversation or presentation.
  4. Don’t forget about making use of facial expressions if you look blank and just stare at everyone you won’t convey your message to the audience as well. Allow your emotions and passions to shine
  5. If you are speaking to someone while sitting sit in an upright position and don’t lean or slouch against the back of the chair. Your best position is to lean slightly forwards and maintain a good posture. This will immediately make you look like an authority
  6. Do not for any reason sit and talk with your arms folded or with your hands clasped together. Any type of locked position signals a barrier to your audience. Remember you can still gesture while sitting down and you should do so when
  7. Even when you are talking to someone on the phone or via a webinar you want to ensure that you are using gestures and expressions. People on the other end of the phone can tell how you are feeling just by the tone of your voice.
  8. You may find it easier to be passionate about your topic by wearing headphones. This way you can gesture and improve your voice by adding intensity. Don’t forget to ask questions as this will help you stay connected with your audience and involve them in the discussion.

So far we have focused on body language while you are doing the talking. You also want to get into the habit of noticing the body language of your audience.

Watch to see how the audience is responding to you, are they laughing or clapping their hands or just sitting there expressionless? If you notice your listeners starting to fidget or start checking their cell phones then you know they are not paying attention to you.

When you see this happen you need to change your presentation. It is possible that you have talked for too long or that you haven’t asked them any questions. People love to give feedback so give them the opportunity to do so.

To present a persuasive speech or presentation you always want to include great content this can be both verbal and non verbal. Always stay in tune with your audience and don’t forget to include interaction with them or change up the pace of the presentation as necessary. Use facial expressions and gestures and don’t be afraid to let your passion come through. People love to listen to someone who is passionate about something and this often invites lots of interaction and applause.


When was the last time one of your children tried to get you to go watch the latest movie release, or buy them their favorite cereal? These gestures were their attempts at persuading you to do something that they wanted.

There are actually different methods of persuasion that can be used to get what you want and these include:

  • Creating a need – use the person’s love of something
  • Appealing to something which is popular or trending – social influence
  • Using certain words or phrases – this is often referred to as using loaded words

While you definitely don’t want to start persuading your family to do things they don’t like or want to, you can use persuasive tactics when faced with objections. You could put your new skills into practice when your child doesn’t want to try a new food.

Or you could use your power of persuasion when they put up a fuss about going somewhere new. Start off by simply discovering what their objections are and then dismissing them in a logical manner one by one.


In this section we will get to the heart of the matter and you will learn what it takes to get what you want from other people. One thing to keep in mind is that you won’t get anywhere if you demand people to do something for you. You will get better results when you give people choices.

Everyone wants to be free to make their own choices and if you incorporate this technique you will become a very persuasive person indeed. Let’s look at an example of this method.

How often have you told your child to do something and they immediately put up a fight or resist in any way possible. Now what happens if you give them choices which include using terms and words such as; because you are free, you have the time, it is your decision or choice and other similar phrases.

This could also be used as reverse psychology where you tell the person to do the opposite of what you want. You still get the result you were looking for.

This method was actually used in a test and the results were astounding. After reviewing a series of 42 psychology tests which used around 22,000 people the results showed that when given the choice to make a decision based around the principal that you have the time, the number of people who said yes was double what they had anticipated.

Basically this method allows you to help persuade people to come to the decision which you want by using their own free will. This is a simple and yet highly effective method.


There are six common techniques when it comes to influence:

  1. Liking
  2. Social Proof
  3. Consistency
  4. Scarcity
  5. Authority
  6. Reciprocity

These six techniques can be related to three goals that are basic in all humans.

Goal of Affiliation – being part of a social circle or group. This can include being friends with one particular person or the feeling of belonging to society as a whole. Accepting and knowing that you fit in.

Goal of Accuracy – being concerned about doing things right and meeting your goals and being viewed by others as doing the right thing.

Goal of a Positive Self Concept View Point – this includes having a good self- esteem and maintaining a positive view of yourself.

These goals can be referred to as unconscious motivators as everyone wants to be affiliated with other people. Plus everyone wants to be right and to think highly of themselves.


Don’t you find that you respond to someone who has more passion and emotions? You can really see how they feel and you respond in a similar way. So why not use passion as a method to persuade people?

All you have to do is to increase your intensity when you are talking about any particular topic or subject. Allow your passion to come through. Passion and intensity can often appear in many different ways and one of these is when people suddenly get emotional and start swearing. This may not be the best way to be persuasive but it does attract attention.

You can convey your passion by being loud as well. Sometimes being the loudest person in a group puts you in the position as being seen as the leader or the go to person. Whether or not this may be actually true is to be seen but research shows that having the loudest voice in a discussion does have its benefits.


Your goal may be to ask someone to do you a favor, which is simple enough, but what do you do when they slap you with a resounding NO?

Of course your first reaction may be to just walk away, but if you want to be a successful persuader then you will want to learn how to turn the conversation around.

Your first step is to figure out a way to deal with the objections. One common method is to simply ask the question “Why not?” If the person has no real reason they will often then comply with your request.

If you anticipate a no then you can be sneaky in your approach and there are two ways to go about this.

First ask for a much larger favor than you really want. Then when the person says no, go to the smaller one and ask that one. The person may feel bad about refusing again and will agree to the favor, so you have accomplished your goal of getting what you want.

The second way is to do the exact opposite and ask for a small favor first. When the person agrees to this you can then take it up a notch and ask for the larger favor. The person will often agree a second time without even really thinking twice about it.

There is no scientific research to say why this works but apparently it works extremely well.


Have you ever gone through the experience of changing your own mind about something? This can be a very powerful experience and you may have even surprised yourself. Self persuasion is actually an occurrence which happens more often than you might think.

The best way to get this method to work is to look at the other side of the argument or conversion. This would be in the same way you would ask a young child for a reason when they don’t want to do something.

Let the person give you their view point and listen to what they have to say. This could easily change the other person’s mind and they actually talk themselves into believing what a short time ago they thought was wrong or misrepresented.

Another example of this is to ask someone with a low confidence level to act all confident and tough. Once they start doing this they actually feel more confident and their self esteem grows. This is viewed as role playing and has been used successfully in many situations to help both children and adults deal with stressful situations.


Words are extremely powerful and can be used for both good and bad. In advertising the choice of words is critical and has been shown to produce amazing results. In certain tests two groups of people were tested with the same product. They had a choice to purchase something. The only difference was in the choice of words used to describe the offer.

In 1999 a study was conducted by using a pack of cards. People were given options of purchasing the pack. The first group was given a dollar amount for the cards and approximately 40% of the households asked made the purchase.

In the second test group people were given the amount in pennies accompanied by the words ‘which is a bargain’. The result was that 80% of households purchased the pack of cards.


If you know someone is trying to persuade you to do something there are ways that you can resist the temptation to give in. It is much easier to defend yourself when you are aware of what is happening with the situation.

The following are some things you can use to resist a persuasive person.

  • Always be on the alert for any type of persuasive tactic and use arguments to defend your
  • When you hear the words ‘everyone is doing it’ resist the urge to conform. Being urged to become part of the crowd is not always a good thing. This is very true for teenagers who are being exposed to smoking, drugs and even sexual
  • Ask for a time out so you can really decide if what you are being asked to do is right. Sometimes taking a step backwards for a few minutes allows you to really think about the situation and make the right
  • If you feel your opinion is right use other people who agree with you to help support your point of
  • Resisting temptations can actually make you more resistant. So if you know you are being persuaded to do something that you don’t agree with, stand strong and stick up for
  • Be very careful if you are feeling tired whilst being persuaded. You don’t want to cave in and agree to something just because of the way you feel. This applies to when you are going out shopping for a new car or piece of furniture. Don’t let the sales person persuade you into buying more than you need. If possible tell the person you will come back the next day and make a final
  • If you are not at all interested in what someone is telling you then just don’t listen. This applies to watching TV commercials or even political discussions. These medians can be super persuasive so if you don’t want to hear them turn off your TV


Your body language doesn’t lie to anyone. No matter what you are trying to convey if your body language doesn’t match then people will not respect or listen intently to you.

A great example of a group of people who use body language as a persuasive tool are lawyers. Their closing arguments consist of persuading the jury to side with them and deliver the verdict on their side. If you have ever seen a good lawyer in action you know how passionate they can get. They will gesture with their arms and often slap text books down on a bench to attract attention to a certain point.

By body language we mean how you position your body for example how close do you stand next to someone, do you shake hands with the person and what expression do you have on your face.

Your eyes can give away a lot without you realizing it. Even the way you touch objects or the way you fiddle with your hair or jewelry. All of these things tell other people a lot about you. First impressions count and these are often conveyed by your body language. Plus it is often very difficult to change a first impression once it has been set in someone’s mind.

If you are not getting the results you want from your persuasive efforts then it is time to change things up. One of the first things people recommend is to change your body language.

When you are talking with someone you want to pay attention to what they are doing. If they are talking in a soft voice then you should do the same. If they are not boisterous and outgoing you want to tone things down to match them.

The more someone likes you the easier it will be to get want you want when it comes to persuasion. Not everyone you meet is going to remember everything that you talked about but they will remember how you made them feel. If they were uncomfortable they will remember this the next time they see you. So how do you make people want to meet you again?

This comes down to your body language and your appearance. One of the first things you should do when talking with someone is to make eye contact and shake hands with confidence. If you constantly look away while talking this will come across as avoidance on your part and will not help you get what you are after.

One of the easiest things to do is smile as this relaxes you and everyone around you and puts them at ease. You immediately come across as approachable and friendly.

Dressing for success is important too and this includes wearing the right colors. There is an entire business that deals with helping people choose the right colored clothes. You will be categorized into one of the four seasons; Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter.

Wearing the right colors and dressing for success are so important and there is even research which shows what colors you should wear according to the time of day. This is related to the techniques of Feng Shui which uses energy levels.

People who dress in bright colors are immediately more noticeable than those who dress in dark navy blues, grays and blacks. What you wear will leave a lasting impression on those around you, so don’t overlook this important factor.

As body language is such a huge part of getting what you want with persuasion we want to include a brief overview of the main points in one easy to find section.

  1. Remember to Smile – this one small thing changes your entire personality and makes you very approachable and
  2. When you make contact with someone for the first time try raising your eyebrows – again this makes you more friendly right
  3. Do not cross your arms when talking to someone. This body position is identified as being defensive and makes you seem nervous and uncomfortable.
  4. Make consistent eye contact with your audience – by avoiding eye contact you come across as nervous, uncomfortable and/or uninterested in the conversation.
  5. Avoid wearing too much of any dark color – brighter colors make you look more approachable and helps you to stand out in the
  6. The color of your clothes matters when you are trying to be persuasive so choose colors that suit your natural skin
  7. When talking if you show your palms you are apparently indicating that you have nothing to
  8. Avoid putting your hands in your pockets – while this can be a comfort to some people it actually communicates to the other person that you are not at all comfortable in the present
  9. Never stand with your back to a door when talking and ensure that the other person doesn’t either. So before you start a discussion you should attempt to move into the room and away from any exits. When you don’t see an escape route you will not be


As you can see there is definitely an art to persuasion and in getting what you want. If you are really determined to make this happen you can. These tips in this report will help you achieve your goals and desires.

Of course, nothing happens without work, so you must be prepared to take action and put what you have learnt into practice. Practice makes perfect and it may take a little time until you perfect these techniques.

Remember too, that we are all different, and what works well for one person may not necessarily work as well for someone else. Test out each technique and use those that you feel comfortable with.

In time you will start to see results and become the go to person for your circle of friends and followers. You will stand out among the crowd in any room and you will have the ability to gently persuade people into getting or doing what you want.

All of this is achievable without being forceful and without being a jerk! Have fun with implementing what you have learned and enjoy the results of your efforts!