Copyright 2003 by Kevin Hogan. Excerpt from The Science of Influence Vol. 20.
I’m going to reveal a few of my most closely held secret methods of determining what people are thinking in the moment, in the next Science of Influence CD and the next couple of CDs in this series. I am going to give you some incredible tools. You will learn one of my favorite models for determining current thought and I am going to give you one of my favorite models for utilizing that specific information in gaining compliance.
Know What They are Thinking
Maybe it’s just me, but I like to know what other people are thinking.
I don’t want to guess.
I want to know.
When you can know, you can determine how to best help that person get what they want in business and in life. Instead of being involved in a long drawn out process, you can get rapid outcomes that are favorable to everyone involved. Ultimately that’s what we all want.
Most people experience massive idiopathic fear when it comes to communication in almost any context. In other words, they feel uncomfortable putting their feelings and thoughts on the table for fear that they will be hurt in some way. When people cloak thoughts and feelings it makes communication incredibly difficult…honesty becomes compromised and everyone gets poor outcomes. You see this in every aspect of life.
When people don’t tell you what they are thinking/feeling, you simply need to discover, calculate, or determine those thoughts in other ways.
Use all the Tools at Your Disposal
You can utilize body language, psychographics, evolutionary psychology, psychobiology, cultural beliefs, religious beliefs, peer pressures, psychological profile and expectancies along with prior behavior to determine almost anyone’s current thoughts with some significant degree of accuracy.
On larger scales you can read groups, cultures, specific demographics, and nations using essentially the same tools.
The more you know about someone or some group, the easier it is to gain compliance. It’s that simple.
It’s true in relationships, it’s true in family and friendships, it’s true in the selling context, it’s true for all aspects of business, it’s true for the therapist and it’s true for nations dealing with other nations. “Intelligence” in the military sense is what separates the men from the boys in every aspect of life.
Knowledge is Power
The ethical use of influence is never more necessary than when you have good intel about your client and customer. Knowledge is potential power and that power can just as easily be used for good as it can be bad. And the line is not always instantly clear…and sometimes the line changes.
Without having excellent intel about your clients and consumers you have little chance of being persuasive beyond random luck. With good intel, you can achieve incredible results in gaining compliance. And, if you think it’s important in business, can you imagine how important it is in personal relationships?
But before we get into utilizing intelligence, I want you to look at some ethical issues that come to rise in acquiring and utilizing intelligence. Influence hinges on good intelligence and more than that, the ethical use of persuasion techniques can be compromised if you aren’t careful. Win/Win or No Deal is more than a slogan, it is a necessary reality to build long term relationships that are mutually beneficial for two people or parties….
The Ethical Use of Persuasion for Good
One of my favorite movies of all time is Meet John Doe. This 1941 black and white movie starred Gary Cooper. The movie was released as nazism and fascism were rapidly spreading in Europe and the movie is in part a response to those who would find fascism an alternative in the United States. The movie was superb and it did it’s job.
A young newspaper reporter (Barbara Stanwyck) about to lose her job concocts a story about a man who is so disgusted with the world that he is going to commit suicide on Christmas Eve. The fictitious note that was “sent” to the newspaper office was signed John Doe. The reporter kept her job but eventually had to find the would be martyr…who existed only in her mind. She interviewed possible role players and ultimately convinced Gary Cooper to be “John Doe” to the public.
Further interviews and press launch a “John Doe” movement across America. Based on principles of being a good neighbor, trust, helping others and making the little guy feel important…ultimately John has to run for President. The unwilling but trapped John does indeed give the speech of a lifetime on the road to a huge audience. Wondering how he can live with himself as a fraud, John seriously contemplates suicide and is only saved by a throng of John Doe fans. One woman’s deception to save her job in wartime turns into a wonderful movement of enormous good. A homeless man’s (Cooper) agreement to play the role of John Doe becomes a massive internal struggle between self and public fraud and greater good of the country…and world.
Two paragraphs do not do the movie justice. It doesn’t do justice to the ethical issues involved and it doesn’t do the subject of persuasion and influence justice. I really want you to rent this two hour movie to challenge every ethical and moral view you hold. I promise you will be glad you did! Off soap box and back to the universal tendencies that make up…John Doe.
Closely Held Secrets Revealed
I would venture to guess that if you take advantage of the information I am about to reveal to you…you will nearly double your response from your sales, adding clients and making successful your influence efforts. Listen, I didn’t say “increase by 10%,” I said “DOUBLE.”
Until you see the movie, here is who “John Doe” is in the 21st century. You are selling your ideas, products and services…and your SELF, to John every day…so you may as well meet him (and his dear friend, Jane Doe).
- In general people aren’t as satisfied as they could be.
- Most people only have a moderate amount of self esteem.
- Two thirds of women and one third of men don’t like the way they look in a mirror.
- Nearly everyone worries and has a deep-seated fear of rejection.
- Almost everyone is afraid to grow old.
- Virtually everyone has a fear of death.
- Almost everyone works to avoid pain and once in pain will do what it takes to get out of pain.
- People don’t have time to be smart shoppers and they don’t comparison shop that much.
- When people get their mind set on something, they want it NOW. (As a rule, people will not delay gratification!)
- Most people still perceive credit cards as not being equal to real money.
- People want to make decisions that will make them look good to OTHERS.
That’s just a thumbnail sketch of a few of John and Jane’s traits. They are universal because we have all evolved from the same gene pool and in some transactions tend to respond similarly in social exchanges. In other words…people are somewhat predictable.
How to Sell to John Doe?
Realizing this, how do we sell to John Doe and how do we market to him? How do we make use of the information used by the largest advertising firms in the world on our shoestring budgets? How do we talk to John and Jane so they listen and comply quickly? How do we know what they are THINKING and FEELING?
Once we know what our prospects’ needs, wants and desires are, we can use this information to prepare a message that firmly impresses upon the mind how we can help them.
We can clearly show our prospects how they will feel better, get out of pain and look like they make great decisions to the people in their peer group.
Here is a good model for you to latch onto and make your own:
The John Doe Model of Selling
- Paint a clear picture for your reader and bring it up real close. It needs to show this: What you presently have, who you presently are, or how you presently feel is not satisfactory.==> You can do, have, or be more and FEEL better!
- Product/idea/service X helps MANY PEOPLE JUST LIKE YOU get that result.
- Try it once. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
- Other people will respect you and like you more for using this product/idea/service.
- IMAGINE your future as you deserve it to be. You can REACH YOUR DREAMS and achieve your goals if you use this product/idea/service.
- This product/idea/service is guaranteed so you can feel secure in making a decision NOW.
- To take advantage of this product/idea/service, call/write now because only Y number of people will be allowed to participate. Here’s all you have to do…
Now, obviously not all market messages use this model or all components of it. But, based on the market research I have done, this model appeals to John Doe. Research reveals that John and Jane DO act NOW when responding to this model!
Now it’s up to you. How can YOU implement this model in your sales or business and WILL you start today or wait until tomorrow?
The Science of Influence is the place to begin. What makes the Science of Influence different from every other program about persuasion? This material is fresh, potent, tested, and has nearly all of what you will discover is new! There is no rehash of past salespeople or scholars.
Science of Influence Master’s Home Study Course (12 CDs)
with Kevin Hogan, Psy.D.
This program is the culmination of years of selling synthesized with the last five years of academic research into compliance gaining, persuasion and influence. You won’t find a program like this, designed for you, anywhere else.