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Influencing as science and the science of SEI

brand reputation management social media Oct 01, 2021

Influencing used to be a game of “talent” – one where “natural geniuses” had some magical ability to get the people around them to action.

Today influencing is a known, scientifically validated process.  It’s a process that we can break down into understandable components and engineered to create engagement – engagement that leads to sales.

Robert Cialdini’s 7 principles of influencing are a powerful toolset for smart Internet marketers, and at the heart of online business success.

Cialdini’s initial 6 principles (outlined in the best selling book INFLUENCE)  are all about building trust and creating liking:

  1. Reciprocation
    When people are given something, they have a built in urge to give back.

  2. Authority
    Who’s in the know has mattered ever since we worked out how to chip flint into spear heads.  Show your authority.

  3. Consistency
    “Something’s changed” was hard-wired into anxiety way back when a rustle in the long grass might be a sabre-tooth tiger.  Present consistently to build trust.

  4. Liking
    You can’t be liked if you can’t be seen.  The idea that humans make decisions with a calculator was a 20th century aberation. Showing up as real and authentic online is SEI gold.

  5. Scarcity
    No one wants to miss out.  And at the other end of the spectrum, there’s prestige in having what others don’t.   Appropriate, strategic scarcity can be an advantage.

  6. Social proof
    Most of the human race, most of the time (around 85%, according to Innovation Theory) make their decisions based on the opinions of those around them – NOT logic.  Social proof for you website visitors from people like them and from people they respect will win you customers.

Later (in his next best seller PRE-SUASION) Cialding added:

  1. Unity 
    Belonging to a community matters – being part of a tribe kept us alive.  Treat your customer base – past and present – as a tribe