Is Robert Cialdini socially influential?

I am currently re-reading Robert Cialdini’s ‘InfluenceThe Psychology of Persuasion’, in which he writes about 6 principles:

  • consistency
  • reciprocation
  • social proof
  • authority
  • liking
  • scarcity

I wonder how the model he describes exists within Social Media. Has it evolved into something else? It just got me thinking how these principles apply now- a-daze and

these are just my thoughts

Consistency

Consistency has 2 facets in Social Media:
Consistency of timing and consistency of content

Consistently posting on time is important but what you post needs to be varied or Random (the problem with that word is it’s popular use to mean something else). This holds true of any relationship: physical, personal, transactional, etc.

If you consistently post the same material, interest in you will wane and your influence with it.  Much the same if what you audibly say becomes predictable people will loose interest and you stand the risk of becoming known as a “Cracked record” – “always going on about …”, “’… blah blah blah …”

If you are posting, daily, weekly, monthly or at any other fixed period of time try not to miss your slot because when blog readers stop reading our blog or page, they tend to not come back.

Reciprocation

Hey! You like me, I like you!
I follow you, you follow me!

People need to be appreciated, even if that means that you just appreciate them for  appreciating you.  In the absence of anything else:

“Thank you” or “Thanks” goes a long way.

This can be difficult when you have lots of followers, but my objective is to respond to every Twitter mention that I get. For me, the optimal way sees to be:
reply personally to ‘one to one’ Tweets and group the ‘multi-Tweep-Tweets’ into groups of 6 tweeters and ‘’Shoutout’ in some way.  To make it easier, I get all my mentions emailed to me.

I do similar things on other networks, wherever I can.

Social proof

Social Proof does not equal Social Troof!

We will always find the evidence to substantiate what we believe, say or think. We make things true.


What the Thinker thinks the Prover proves
~ Robert Anton Wilson


Taking Cialdini’s spin on this, this hasn’t changed. The masses determine what is true and prove it,  even if it isn’t true.

It is born from agreement and masses tend to agree with mass thinking.

With the opportunity to post out to millions of people in one go, then re-posting or re-tweeting what is considered popular can be instantaneous and cascades towards millions more …  Isn’t that what is known “Trending”?

Most of the time this is mass hypnosis

Authority

‘I iz important cos I sez I iz important!

I’ve come across a few of them in my time and the ‘Follow Me or else brigade’ in Twitter prove that one. Not what Cialdini is referring to but close methinks.

The easiest way to get authority is have somebody proclaim you an expert.

Being an Expert is about reputation rather than knowledge and it attracts others. If the person who is attracted then sees no evidence that you are an expert and that you lack knowledge or understanding or experience, they will personally downgrade you but your reputation will still last longer.

Many an incompetent has been deemed an expert and survived – it occurs to me as a Westminster sort of thing Open-mouthed smile

An expert is somebody who says or writes something that somebody else hears or reads and then tells someone else. To the third person, who heard or read what the second person has said, the first person will probably become an expert.

Isn’t that Social proof?

Liking

Now-a-daze, ‘Liking’ is a function, in Social Media. It may mean I like what you have written (emotional) or simply I have read what you have written (function).
‘Likes’ count towards Social Capital scores and Social Capital is a measure of Influence.

Unfortunately using ‘Likes’ as a measure in calculating Social Capital means that scores can be manipulated. For example you can visit someone’s page and like everything  they have posted –this is known as  ‘Like Bombing’.

Coming back to Cialdini’s point, if you express like for someone or something about them, you can achieve positive rapport much more quickly and that is good practice. It is also good practice in Social Media.

People are usually likeable. Find something to like about them.

If you genuinely like what someone has posted then hit the like or favourite buttons. Its good feedback for them and they will like you for it.

The feedback can also help stop somebody becoming a ‘Cracked Record’

Scarcity

Probably more akin to Marketing but also tactical in personal relations. Not being readily available is attractive – isn’t that right, girls?

I don’t think that being unavailable is a good thing in established relationships and that includes your followers or friends in Social Media. But in courtship: ‘Is there any other way ?’


‘Is there any other way ?’
~ Melvin Udall [Jack Nicholson] in ‘As Good As It Gets’


Court prospects, court potential lovers, court supporters, court partners, court Joint Venturers and appreciate everything they do for you

I conclude

This isn’t the truth. Its just my thoughts as  a person who has been called an expert by somebody else. I hope you Like what I wrote and that it does bomb. I’ll like you for it!
If I haven’t been posting to my blog of late, I was probably being Scarce but consistently so Open-mouthed smile

Sources http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0119822/quotes NOT!
Robert Cialdini ‘
Influence – The Psychology of Persuasion’
http://aypee.wordpress.com
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7 thoughts on “Is Robert Cialdini socially influential?

  1. Hi AyPee! Great post – Cialdini’s Influence is tremendously relevant to social because of the scalabilty of interaction. The people that are most successful (I immediately think of Gary Vaynerchuk) have leveraged his principles. It’s also very hard to find a book on social media or marketing that doesn’t reference his work! I’m glad you wrote this post! Cheers!

    • Thanks Jim.
      I have to admit being stuck of late.
      Got into a Caffeinated philosophy session (a la Starbucks) with my Master Marketing mate Jason Jackman yesterday which led onto Cialdini’s principles.

      It occurs to me just how close inspiration is to influence, both of which are sociable ventures (albeit sometimes anti-social) and out flowed thoughts onto paper.

      Keep the Tweet!
      AyPee

  2. I LOVE Robert Cialdini. I’ve read everything he’s ever written, and I keep searching Amazon for a book he promised to write called Power Moments (working title).

    I think his insights are methodical and accurate. And your tie in with SoMe is on the money. THnx for getting me fire up today :-)

    • Thanks Dino
      I appreciate your feedback

      My personal favouritequote on power comes from Louise L Hay: “The Point of Power is always in the present”
      My take: right here, right now, nothing exists other than what we create and that is power in itself.
      Stay Great BE Awesome!

  3. Of course I ripped this topic open in my book Return On Influence, which we got to discuss together in Surrey! A pleasure meeting you! : )

    I think Dr. Cialdini’s work is quite relevant in the offline world– it will stand the test of time — but is much different in the online world. Quite interesting dynamics.

  4. Pingback: Is Robert Cialdini socially influential? | Ethical Impact | Scoop.it

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