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Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say "yes"—and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.

You'll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader—and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.

Some images that appeared in the print edition of this book are unavailable in the electronic edition due to rights reasons.

Topics: Communication, Leadership, and Cognitive Science

Published: HarperCollins on Jun 2, 2009
ISBN: 9780061899874
List price: $10.99
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A Must Read for every thinker.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Good read for many people. read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Robert Cialdini is a professor of psychology at Arizona State University. He takes the line that modern life is fast and complex and we all use shortcuts (ie don`t think) in resolving what to do.This very good book shows how salesmen use these shortcuts to increase sales and it is especially interesting as Cialdini left the campus for 3 years to meet the compliance professionals, the sales operators, fund-raisers, recruiters, advertisers, etc. As he says, "They know what works and what doesn`t; the law of survival of the fittest assures it."On his return he wrote this book, putting what he found under 6 main headings - Reciprocation, Consistency, Social Proof, Liking, Authority and Scarcity.RECIPROCATION - Cialdini meets a boy scout selling $5 tickets to their annual party. He says "No thanks" and the scout counters with "O.K. Well at least buy some of our big chocolate bars, they're only $1." He buys 2 chocolate bars he doesn't want. As he says, "The second request doesn't have to be small; it only has to be smaller than the initial one."CONSISTENCY - What those around us think is true of us is enormously important in determining what we ourselves think is true. New Haven housewives gave much more money to a canvasser from the Multiple Sclerosis Association. He points out that, "Apparently the mere knowledge that someone viewed them as charitable caused these women to make their actions consistent with another's perception of them."SOCIAL PROOF - If you want a 6 year old to do something let him discover another 6 year old doing it. What peer groups are doing is what matters. He quotes Cavett Roberts advice to sales trainees,"Since 95% of people are imitators and only 5% initiators, people are persuaded more by the actions of others than by any proof we can offer." LIKING - The Guiness Book of Records has Joe Girard as the worlds greatest car salesman. He was General Motors best salesman 12 years in a row, selling 5 cars or trucks every day that he went to work. He says that he offers a fair price and someone that they like to buy from (ie. good looking/ good presentation/ flattery/ same as them/ on their side).AUTHORITY - Cialdini meets Vincent the super waiter. This is how he does it: 1) friendly 2) "I'm afraid that (whatever is ordered) is not as good tonight as it usually is. Might I recommend instead the ......." (a cheaper dish) 3) He seems to them to be friendly, knowledgeable, honest and on their side. 4) "Would you like me to suggest a wine to go with your meals" (excellent but costly and always followed by a similar dessert) 5) They say yes = A bigger bill and bigger tip.SCARCITY - Stephen Worchel did a cookie experiment and found that cookies with a few in the jar were rated as more desirable than cookies with plenty in the jar. The testers admitted that they tasted the same. As Cialdini says, " The joy is not in experiencing a scarce commodity but in possessing it. It is important that we do not confuse the two." Hence all the scarcity tactics. So if (a big if) we want to defend ourselves against all this, how do we do it ?He suggests to remember that the scarce cookie didn't taste better. O.K. but it does look as if at some point we need to be aware and think about what is going on ie. use our "adult brain" in Eric Bernes terminology.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Using a wide range of examples, from salesmen to prison interrogators to data gathered in sociology experiments, Cialdini shows various methods used to influence people.He classifies the "influences" into major categories, and provides suggestions about how to deal with them.Unlike some other authors, Cialdini does not take a cynical attitude and conclude that we're all irrational, because we can be influenced. His is a positive and scientific approach. He explains why we might make certain errors and be influenced in certain ways, and shows that there ways to correct our mistakes.Not an earth-shattering book if one has read similar ones (say, about sales-techniques). If one has not, then this is a good place to start.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
A good review of literature in easy to read format. A must for sales and marketing folks looking to dig deeper. However most of the research comes from college students in the USA so it may be more narrow than indicated. Great way to be on the lookout for manipulation as well.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Been wanting to read something by Cialdini for a while, actually ever since I listened to one of his lectures - which was great. A day after I finished it, someone stopped us in the street selling timeshare. The commitment-consistency; contrast & reciprocity techniques were all there in the pitch (...and we didn't buy) [Sep-07:]read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book was recommended to my by a collegue & friend. We are working in the field of online community management.Mr Cialdini shares a lot of stories and thoughts on the subject at hand. Each "technique" is backed by examples and narrated studies (complete with references). In contrast to other books on this subject is seems very well recherched and is, despite the topic, fun to read.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
You're an individual, right? You have your own thoughts, your own opinion, right? Wrong.... Read this book, and you'll know why. An eye-opener about persuasion, business trick and generally about why we say yes when we don't even want...read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say "yes"—and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.You'll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader—and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Author Cialdini began the research that would lead to this book when he got tired of being taken advantage of. He’s not unintelligent, yet he would find himself talked into buying things he didn’t want at all. What was happening? It turns out that there are some basic ways that humans are influenced, and most people follow them without questioning. Some are just the easy way to deal with situations, while some actually create discomfort when one refuses to follow the social conventions. Cialdini breaks it all down into six methods of getting people to do things the way the user wants them to: reciprocation- if someone does something for you, no matter how small, you must then do what they want you to do, hence all those charities that send you return address labels; commitment and consistency-if they can get you to establish yourself as something, say, someone who likes to go out to dinner by asking you about your habits in a survey, then ask you to buy a coupon book for dining out, you are more apt to buy the thing rather than risk the image built in the survey; social proof- if other people think a certain way, so should you- the canned laughter on sitcoms is the most common use of this; liking- this comes into play in ploys like Tupperware parties, where because the person benefiting is your friend you feel you *have* to buy something, it is brought into play by having the seller be someone attractive and dress like and have similar values to you; authority- 9 out of 10 doctors recommend this drug!; and scarcity- hurry, only 10 left! -or limited edition items. We’ve all seen these ploys; we’ve all fallen prey to them. The author gives a few suggestions as to how to prevent yourself from doing so in the future. Basically it comes down to being willing to break social rules, like the one of reciprocity. One must remember to think about every interaction where someone wants something from you, rather than running on auto pilot. It’s an interesting book. Not only does Cialdini have a lot of studies to back up his thesis, but he’s an entertaining writer.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
I learned a lot from this book. I wasn't in the mood to read this book at this time but glad that I did. It sure opened my eyes. Those sales men sure know how to presuade us to do things we might not have normally done. Now that I know their secrets I am going to show them. I am not just a pretty blonde anymore. tee hee.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Required reading for all marketing professionals. The book details the most common approaches to influencing the decisions of others, backed up by the authors time spent infiltrating direct marketing companies and the like. Offers handy hints on how to spot when you're being manipulated and how to handle it.A very enjoyable read, should leave you much more aware of how you're being played next time you're in the market for a used car.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This is a very interesting book to read. I'll definitely want a copy of it on my bookshelf, next to Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World Revisited", also another good on how people's minds can be manipulated.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Human beings use a number of heuristics to simplify our decision-making processes. Unfortunately, these heuristics can be exploited by other people for personal gain. Cialdini describes how people can be influenced to do things contrary to their own best interests by describing a series of psychology experiments that have been conducted by him as well as other psychologists. He also offers some strategies for defence against unwanted influence.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This is a classic. Covering Reciprocity, Commitment and consistency, Social proof, Liking, Authority and Scarcity it is a definitive introduction to how we are influenced. Many of the examples may now seem old hat, but a quick study of tv advertising suggests that they are more relevant not less.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Great information in this book.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
I thought this book was very interesting and informative. I loved the research examples. I thought the parts about how to say no were less important. We are all influenced by various degrees in all our decisions. He made it seem like sometimes salespeople were "bad" people in that they take away our free will. read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Its very interestingread more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Read all reviews

Reviews

A Must Read for every thinker.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Good read for many people.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Robert Cialdini is a professor of psychology at Arizona State University. He takes the line that modern life is fast and complex and we all use shortcuts (ie don`t think) in resolving what to do.This very good book shows how salesmen use these shortcuts to increase sales and it is especially interesting as Cialdini left the campus for 3 years to meet the compliance professionals, the sales operators, fund-raisers, recruiters, advertisers, etc. As he says, "They know what works and what doesn`t; the law of survival of the fittest assures it."On his return he wrote this book, putting what he found under 6 main headings - Reciprocation, Consistency, Social Proof, Liking, Authority and Scarcity.RECIPROCATION - Cialdini meets a boy scout selling $5 tickets to their annual party. He says "No thanks" and the scout counters with "O.K. Well at least buy some of our big chocolate bars, they're only $1." He buys 2 chocolate bars he doesn't want. As he says, "The second request doesn't have to be small; it only has to be smaller than the initial one."CONSISTENCY - What those around us think is true of us is enormously important in determining what we ourselves think is true. New Haven housewives gave much more money to a canvasser from the Multiple Sclerosis Association. He points out that, "Apparently the mere knowledge that someone viewed them as charitable caused these women to make their actions consistent with another's perception of them."SOCIAL PROOF - If you want a 6 year old to do something let him discover another 6 year old doing it. What peer groups are doing is what matters. He quotes Cavett Roberts advice to sales trainees,"Since 95% of people are imitators and only 5% initiators, people are persuaded more by the actions of others than by any proof we can offer." LIKING - The Guiness Book of Records has Joe Girard as the worlds greatest car salesman. He was General Motors best salesman 12 years in a row, selling 5 cars or trucks every day that he went to work. He says that he offers a fair price and someone that they like to buy from (ie. good looking/ good presentation/ flattery/ same as them/ on their side).AUTHORITY - Cialdini meets Vincent the super waiter. This is how he does it: 1) friendly 2) "I'm afraid that (whatever is ordered) is not as good tonight as it usually is. Might I recommend instead the ......." (a cheaper dish) 3) He seems to them to be friendly, knowledgeable, honest and on their side. 4) "Would you like me to suggest a wine to go with your meals" (excellent but costly and always followed by a similar dessert) 5) They say yes = A bigger bill and bigger tip.SCARCITY - Stephen Worchel did a cookie experiment and found that cookies with a few in the jar were rated as more desirable than cookies with plenty in the jar. The testers admitted that they tasted the same. As Cialdini says, " The joy is not in experiencing a scarce commodity but in possessing it. It is important that we do not confuse the two." Hence all the scarcity tactics. So if (a big if) we want to defend ourselves against all this, how do we do it ?He suggests to remember that the scarce cookie didn't taste better. O.K. but it does look as if at some point we need to be aware and think about what is going on ie. use our "adult brain" in Eric Bernes terminology.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Using a wide range of examples, from salesmen to prison interrogators to data gathered in sociology experiments, Cialdini shows various methods used to influence people.He classifies the "influences" into major categories, and provides suggestions about how to deal with them.Unlike some other authors, Cialdini does not take a cynical attitude and conclude that we're all irrational, because we can be influenced. His is a positive and scientific approach. He explains why we might make certain errors and be influenced in certain ways, and shows that there ways to correct our mistakes.Not an earth-shattering book if one has read similar ones (say, about sales-techniques). If one has not, then this is a good place to start.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
A good review of literature in easy to read format. A must for sales and marketing folks looking to dig deeper. However most of the research comes from college students in the USA so it may be more narrow than indicated. Great way to be on the lookout for manipulation as well.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Been wanting to read something by Cialdini for a while, actually ever since I listened to one of his lectures - which was great. A day after I finished it, someone stopped us in the street selling timeshare. The commitment-consistency; contrast & reciprocity techniques were all there in the pitch (...and we didn't buy) [Sep-07:]
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book was recommended to my by a collegue & friend. We are working in the field of online community management.Mr Cialdini shares a lot of stories and thoughts on the subject at hand. Each "technique" is backed by examples and narrated studies (complete with references). In contrast to other books on this subject is seems very well recherched and is, despite the topic, fun to read.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
You're an individual, right? You have your own thoughts, your own opinion, right? Wrong.... Read this book, and you'll know why. An eye-opener about persuasion, business trick and generally about why we say yes when we don't even want...
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say "yes"—and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.You'll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader—and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Author Cialdini began the research that would lead to this book when he got tired of being taken advantage of. He’s not unintelligent, yet he would find himself talked into buying things he didn’t want at all. What was happening? It turns out that there are some basic ways that humans are influenced, and most people follow them without questioning. Some are just the easy way to deal with situations, while some actually create discomfort when one refuses to follow the social conventions. Cialdini breaks it all down into six methods of getting people to do things the way the user wants them to: reciprocation- if someone does something for you, no matter how small, you must then do what they want you to do, hence all those charities that send you return address labels; commitment and consistency-if they can get you to establish yourself as something, say, someone who likes to go out to dinner by asking you about your habits in a survey, then ask you to buy a coupon book for dining out, you are more apt to buy the thing rather than risk the image built in the survey; social proof- if other people think a certain way, so should you- the canned laughter on sitcoms is the most common use of this; liking- this comes into play in ploys like Tupperware parties, where because the person benefiting is your friend you feel you *have* to buy something, it is brought into play by having the seller be someone attractive and dress like and have similar values to you; authority- 9 out of 10 doctors recommend this drug!; and scarcity- hurry, only 10 left! -or limited edition items. We’ve all seen these ploys; we’ve all fallen prey to them. The author gives a few suggestions as to how to prevent yourself from doing so in the future. Basically it comes down to being willing to break social rules, like the one of reciprocity. One must remember to think about every interaction where someone wants something from you, rather than running on auto pilot. It’s an interesting book. Not only does Cialdini have a lot of studies to back up his thesis, but he’s an entertaining writer.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
I learned a lot from this book. I wasn't in the mood to read this book at this time but glad that I did. It sure opened my eyes. Those sales men sure know how to presuade us to do things we might not have normally done. Now that I know their secrets I am going to show them. I am not just a pretty blonde anymore. tee hee.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Required reading for all marketing professionals. The book details the most common approaches to influencing the decisions of others, backed up by the authors time spent infiltrating direct marketing companies and the like. Offers handy hints on how to spot when you're being manipulated and how to handle it.A very enjoyable read, should leave you much more aware of how you're being played next time you're in the market for a used car.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This is a very interesting book to read. I'll definitely want a copy of it on my bookshelf, next to Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World Revisited", also another good on how people's minds can be manipulated.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Human beings use a number of heuristics to simplify our decision-making processes. Unfortunately, these heuristics can be exploited by other people for personal gain. Cialdini describes how people can be influenced to do things contrary to their own best interests by describing a series of psychology experiments that have been conducted by him as well as other psychologists. He also offers some strategies for defence against unwanted influence.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This is a classic. Covering Reciprocity, Commitment and consistency, Social proof, Liking, Authority and Scarcity it is a definitive introduction to how we are influenced. Many of the examples may now seem old hat, but a quick study of tv advertising suggests that they are more relevant not less.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Great information in this book.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
I thought this book was very interesting and informative. I loved the research examples. I thought the parts about how to say no were less important. We are all influenced by various degrees in all our decisions. He made it seem like sometimes salespeople were "bad" people in that they take away our free will.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Its very interesting
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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