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Robert Cialdini’s Principles of Influence: Basic Concepts. Overriding Principle “Click-Whirr ” or Automatic Responding Mother Turkeys Jewelry at Twice the Price! Fixed Action Patterns at Copy Machine Betting the Shortcut Odds (Heuristics) Capitalizing on Genuine Principles

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robert cialdini s principles of influence basic concepts
Robert Cialdini’s Principles of Influence: Basic Concepts
  • Overriding Principle
    • “Click-Whirr” or Automatic Responding
    • Mother Turkeys
    • Jewelry at Twice the Price!
    • Fixed Action Patterns at Copy Machine
    • Betting the Shortcut Odds (Heuristics)
  • Capitalizing on Genuine Principles
    • We “should” listen to authorities
    • Reciprocation is reasonable
  • Problems if used inappropriately
principle 1 reciprocation
Principle 1 - Reciprocation
  • Reciprocation
    • You scratched my back, I’ll scratch yours
    • Get your free samples!
    • Get a free Trip to Reno!
    • Door-in-the-Face Technique
      • Ask big, get turned down, make concession, then ask small
    • That’s Not All Technique
      • No chance to turn down initial request
principle 2 commitment consistency
Principle 2 – Commitment & Consistency
  • Commitment & Consistency
    • Cognitive Dissonance – Leon Festinger
      • We like our attitudes and behavior to be consistent
      • When they are inconsistent, we feel tension
      • Tension is uncomfortable, and we wish to reduce it
      • We can change behavior or attitude to align the two
    • Foot-in-Door Technique
      • Ask for a small act of compliance, then build on it
    • Low-Ball Technique
      • Make a low offer, then increase it once people are ‘hooked’
principle 3 social proof1
Principle 3 – Social Proof
  • Social Proof
    • Conformity to Norms – Asch and Sherif
    • Laugh Tracks
    • Best Seller Lists
    • Descriptive vs. Injunctive Norms
      • Descriptive Norms: What the majority of others is doing
      • Injunctive Norms: What people “should” do
    • Descriptive Norms and the Environment
      • Littering, Petrified Wood, and Towel Reuse in Hotels

Asch

Experiment

slide6

Sherif’s Autokinetic Study

DAY 1 - Alone

High Variability

7.5 Inches

1/2 Inch

2Inches

slide7

Autokinetic

Phenomenon

1.7 Inches

4 Inches

3 Inches

DAY 2 - Group

Medium Variability

slide8

Autokinetic

Phenomenon

3.5 Inches

DAY 3 - Group

Lower Variability

2 Inches

2.2 Inches

slide9

Autokinetic

Phenomenon

2.3 Inches

DAY 4 - Group

Norm Formed

2 Inches

2.1 Inches

sherif s classic study results
Sherif’s Classic Study: Results

InformationalInfluence

sherif vs asch two types of influence
Sherif vs. Asch: Two Types of Influence
  • Informational Influence
    • Situation is ambiguous
    • Information dependence
    • We conform to “gain information”
    • Sherif Autokinetic Study
  • Normative Influence
    • Situation is clear
    • Outcome dependence
    • We conform to receive rewards or avoid punishment
    • Asch’s Conformity Studies
environmental theft the negative power of descriptive norms
Environmental Theft:The (Negative) Power of Descriptive Norms
  • Message at Petrified Forest National Park(Arizona)
    • Your heritage is being vandalized every day by theft losses of petrified wood of 14 tons a year, mostly a small piece at a time.
    • Conveys the message that “everyone is taking it”
  • Experiment (Cialdini and colleagues; 2003)
    • Marked pieces of petrified wood in park
    • Injunctive Norm Condition (Sign Read):
      • Please don’t remove petrified wood from the Park, in order to preserve the natural state of the Petrified Forest.
    • Descriptive Norm Condition (Sign Read):
      • Many past visitors have removed petrified wood from the Park, changing the natural state of the Petrified Forest.
    • Theft Rates:
      • Injunctive Norm (1.67%) vs. Descriptive Norm (7.92%)
    • Conclusion?
      • When the socially undesirable action is prevalent (lots of theft), PSAs should focus on injunctive (not descriptive) norm
littering more evidence for the power of descriptive norms
Littering:More Evidence for the Power of Descriptive Norms
  • Cialdini, Reno and Kallgren (1990)
  • Subjects find a handbill on their windshield which they can litter
  • Environment is either clean or littered
  • Clean environment conveys descriptive norm that people don’t litter
  • Littered environment conveys descriptive norm that people do litter
  • Subject sees another person (confederate) litter or not
  • Observe whether people litter – Results 
slide15

Recycling Towels in Hotels:Even More Evidence for the Power of Descriptive Norms

Below “Help Save Environment”

Control: HELP SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT. You can show your respect for nature and help save the environment by reusing your towels during your stay

Social Norm: JOIN YOUR FELLOW GUESTS IN HELPING TO SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT. Almost 75% of guests who are asked to participate in our new resource savings program do help by using their towels more than once. You can join your fellow guests in this program to help save the environment by reusing your towels during your stay.

Goldstein, Cialdini, & Griskevicius (2008, J of Consumer Research)

principle 4 liking
Principle 4 – Liking
  • Liking
    • We are more likely to comply with requests from those we like
    • Liking often based on
      • Attractiveness
      • Familiarity
      • Similarity
similarity and compliance what a coincidence
Similarity and ComplianceWhat a Coincidence!
  • Four Experiments on Impact of “Incidental Similarity” on Compliance with Requests for Help
  • Experiment 1
    • Same Birthday; DV = help with a report
  • Experiment 2
    • Same Name; DV = donation to Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
  • Experiment 3:
    • Same Personality (Either Common or Uncommon); DV = help with a report
  • Experiment 4:
    • Same Personality (but here DV = rated attraction to other person)
  • All studies show similarity (especially uncommon similarity) increases compliance with requests for help

Jerry

Burger

principle 5 authority
Principle 5 – Authority
  • Authority
    • We are more likely to comply with requests from authorities
    • Milgram’s Classic Studies on Obedience to Authority

Stanley

Milgram

milgram studies basic set up
Milgram Studies – Basic Set Up

Confederate

Shock Generator

Real Participant

principle 6 scarcity
Principle 6 – Scarcity
  • Scarcity
    • We believe that things that are scare are more valuable
    • More likely to pay more for scarce resources
    • Overlapping appointments for selling cars
    • Excuse me while I take this call
    • One day only at the Bon Marche
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