How to Master Selling on the Internet: The 6 Irrefutable Principles of Persuasion

23 Apr

Competition today is tough! Learn to lock in your customers’ interests.

Persuading your prospects more easily and quickly is necessary to get ahead of your rivals. More importantly, understanding the principle that locks in customers’ interests will help you gain competitive advantage in the face of stiff competition. Your competitors on the other hand can only imitate after you have made huge sales.

Fortunately, some people find it easy to implement these principles without thinking. However, many others struggle endlessly not knowing these fundamental principles.

1. The Principle of Liking

“Make us your friend to influence our decisions”

To make someone your friend, you need to show them that you like them. You need to get more personal with them, and let them relate with your own person also. When people get a hint that you like them and are genuinely interested in them, they’d naturally accept requests from you.

You can achieve this by uncovering your personal stories that they can relate to and offering genuine interest in the problems of individuals.

“In war, it is not men, but the man, that counts”

Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821)

2. The Principle of Reciprocity

“Do for us what you want us to do for you”

People find it easy to repay in kind. That’s why Chelsea Rustrum of Freemania makes huge returns from linking mothers with free services and products.

When you give out a truly high quality newsletter, e-book or report, you are likely to get more sales of your paid products and services. First, it is a proof of your expertise. Secondly, it invokes the natural tendency of people to repay in kind.

An army is like a horse, in that it reflects the temper and the spirit of its rider

Lone Star Preacher, Colonel John W. Thomason, Jr., (1941)

3. Social Proof or Guarantee

“The friend of my friend is my friend”

Your prospects are more likely to trust you immediately they realize that other people (especially their friends) trust you. It is called ‘Peer Influence’.

Facebook has helped businesses to leverage on this principle by allowing their users to become fans of individuals and businesses on clicking ‘like’. Internet businesses quickly leveraged on this principle by allowing people to like a post, website, product or service with just a click of the mouse.

4. The Principle of Scarcity

“I need to focus first on dwindling resources”

You would have noticed a tendency for a rush at deadlines. This is because items appear more valuable as they get unavailable. The human mind naturally prioritizes dwindling resources above those we still have access to.

To leverage on this human tendency, you need to create an impression of scarcity. Your sales or bonanza should always have deadlines.

Secondly, begin to frame your offers in terms of what your prospects stand to lose if they don’t act on the information rather than what they stand to gain. In addition, always provide very exclusive information rather than the widely available data.

Space I can recover. Time, never.

Napoleon Bonaparte (1979 – 1821)

5. The Principle of Professionalism

“I need to know you can do the task or better still, you have done it in the past”

Many people just assume their expertise is obvious. That is very wrong. You need to really let your prospects understand how you do your business and what you have done in the past.  Avoid the risk of appearing like another scammer.

If you need video demonstration, slide shows, reports etc to show your expertise, go ahead and get them. The returns from this little investment can be overwhelming.

Another way to showcase your expertise is by getting interviewed by the press. This has a way of creating a good impression of you.

When opponents are unwilling to fight with you, it is because they think it is contrary to their interests, or because you have misled them into thinking so.

Sun-tzu (4th Century B.C)

6. The Principle of Consistency

“I can be trusted”

You always want to appear trustworthy just like your prospects. Many people abide by their words when they know you and others are counting on them.

Make their commitments appear voluntary, active, and public by documenting them and letting them know you have documented it. One way you can apply this is by sending emails to acknowledge a visit or attempt to buy.

You have probably applied one or more of these principles in the past. What is important now is that you apply the principles together. If you already have some competitors in your niche; just that you know– more competitors are coming.

“He who knows the enemy and himself will never in a hundred battles be at risk”

Sun-tzu (4th  Century B.C.)

Further Reading on Internet Marketing

  1. 5 Internet Business Tips: How to Plan Your Internet Marketing Process
  2. Maximizing Your Social Media Strategies: Advice from Thought Leaders in Internet Marketing
  3. How to Upgrade Your Internet Marketing Strategy to Gain Competitive Advantage Using ‘Strategic Positioning’
  4. 10 Subtle Internet Marketing Tips to Win the Business War in 2011

One Response to “How to Master Selling on the Internet: The 6 Irrefutable Principles of Persuasion”


  1. 9 Tips You Need to Write and Respond to Emails Professionally « Woculus - July 15, 2011

    […] How to Master Selling on the Internet: The 6 Irrefutable Principles of Persuasion […]

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