How to Increase Your Social Influence

Having your own social circle helps build your self-esteem from the feeling of belonging to a group that shares the same interests. Only a few people don’t go well with a squad. No matter how big or small your group may be, it’s still a whole lot better than going through everything alone. However, it’s not that easy to build your own clique or join an already established one, especially if you are the Introvert type of person. You need to be capable of adapting and conforming to the group’s interests and activities. You also have to be ready to develop some social influence over your peers to make things more interesting for you.

 

Before you can do this, you need to understand how social influence plays a vital role in your life and those around you. Most of the younger generation today is under some sort of influence – From peers, parents, family, school, work or even celebrities. Just by watching television, you can easily adopt to the new trends that are currently being used or practiced by the majority. Although there are some practices that are not that good to follow, there are also a lot that are beneficial to the society. What matters is that you know which trend to follow and which trend to ignore.

The moment your emotions or actions are affected by other people, you are considered under social influence. This isn’t really a bad thing. It’s natural for you to be affected by the people surrounding you. It’s actually a basic thing for humans to conform to other people’s standards and expectations. This is what you call survival. If you stick to your ways and stay stonehearted, then you’ll probably end up being isolated from the rest of the world.

 

The Art of Persuasion

 

There are people who effortlessly practice the art of persuasion. They may not do it intentionally, but these people tend to affect your lives, one way or another. Take for example the celebrities you are idolizing. When you see them campaigning for a certain product, you usually consider buying the same product for the simple reason that your idol supposedly uses it. Even if you don’t really need the product, you will probably buy it because the celebrities you follow said that it’s good. That’s the amount of influence they have on you.

 

On the other hand, there are a lot of people who aren’t skilled enough to influence others. However, there’s really nothing to worry about. There are a lot of techniques that you can learn by yourself in order to have influence on other people. Actually, the main key in influencing the people around you is by using persuasive words and actions. Once you learn how to skillfully use this, you will be able to affect other people’s emotions and point of views, regardless if you are sincere or not.

 

The Power of Persuasion

 

The power of persuasion can be intimidating, at times. It must be used in good faith so that no one will be deceived. Persuasion is the art of affecting other people’s point of view, emotions, actions or beliefs. That’s what actually makes persuasion extremely powerful. It has the ability to alter your emotions and perceptions in almost an instant.

 

Oftentimes, fraudsters take advantage of their persuasion skills. If you aren’t really that careful enough, then you might end up falling for scams and various types of fraud. Usually, scammers target people who can be easily persuaded. So the next time you meet others who try to affect your emotions or change your point of view, think twice whether you should believe them or not.

 

Top 7 Persuasive Techniques

 

There will be times when you want people to follow how you do things. However, this isn’t an easy task. You need to look credible and reliable enough before you can convince others that your way of doing things is better than what they are accustomed to. Most often than not, people learn best through example. In short, you need to let other people see that you’re walking the talk. Otherwise, the people around you will have a hard time believing in everything that you say.

 

Here are some persuasive techniques you can apply in order to have enough social influence:

 

  1. Pick the right timing. If you want to leave an impact on people’s minds and hearts, you have to know that TIMING is everything. Even if you are the most persuasive person in the world, you might not be able to influence others if your timing is off. For example, you can’t tell a grieving person to smile and be happy in an instant. You have to let the feeling of grief pass in order for your skills to work. In marketing, you can’t sell a new car to someone who just lost his home to a huge fire. Know when to exercise your persuasion skills so that your efforts won’t be wasted.

 

  1. Know the right words. Knowing what to say is one of the major keys to persuading people. If you can’t speak effectively, there’s a possibility that the people around you will eventually become disinterested. Also, as much as possible, you must speak in an affirmative manner. Keep in mind that every person already has a lot of things going on, so speaking in a negative manner might provoke them or cause them to lose interest. It would be best if you give them a sense of assurance and a little bit of hope.

 

  1. Let your body do the talking. You should not take this literally. It simply means that you have to couple your words with gestures or facial expressions. This is one of the most effective ways of letting people know that you’re sincere with what you’re saying. You could look too stiff and nervous if you just stand there and blabber all day long. The moment you do that, don’t expect someone to be persuaded by you.

 

  1. Talk confidently, and it helps to talk a bit fast, though not too fast to dilute your main points. Most of the time, fast talkers are regarded as persons with high intellect. This is probably because people think fast talkers are equipped with more knowledge than the normal talkers. They automatically think you have knowledge on everything since you are not afraid to run out of words you say. Also, being confident while talking adds to your credibility. It makes you actually look like someone respectable. More importantly, most people like fast talkers simply because they only have a few minutes to spare.

 

  1. Be consistent. This is another point you have to always remember. Having inconsistencies with your words will make you become unbelievable. You have to make sure that everything you are about to say is consistent with your previous statements. You should also try to match your gestures with your words. If you are expressing great anger towards someone or something, it is okay to do some finger-pointing and do heavy hand gestures.

 

  1. Avoid using “I”. If you want to persuade people, then you have to make them feel like they already belong to your social circle. As much as possible, you should use the collective term “we”, in order to create a feeling of belongingness for your listeners. This is one of the most effective ways of building rapport with your audience. When you use the term “we”, it implies that you are already considering the people to be one with you through conformity.

 

  1. Stay neutral. When discussing with people, you must lay both pros and cons out. This is one of the best ways to earn your audience’s trust. By stating both pros and cons, you will look unbiased and credible – Traits that are looked upon by most people. If you’re discussing a specific argument, then you should state both sides to look as neutral as possible. Let listeners have some time to figure things out themselves. The moment they start reacting to what’s being said, slowly integrate your original idea. This way, they will eventually end up leaning to your side more.

 

Examples of Persuasive Words

 

More than anything else, persuasive words have the greatest impact to many people. You should know which words can grab their attention and keep them interested to listen closely. Use words that will affect your listeners’ emotions and mood. Usually, these words are known as “emotionally charged words” since it causes your listeners’ emotions to shift away from its current state. These kinds of words have the power to change the impact of a statement.

 

Here are some of the most powerful words used to persuade people:

 

  • I’ve heard a rumor…

This is an enticing statement that can captivate your target audience. Many want a daily dose of gossip. Starting off with this phrase can almost always grab the attention of your listeners even in the beginning.

 

  • What do you think will happen if…

This phrase creates a feeling of guilt, which is often used if you desperately want your listeners to do what you say or follow your way of doing things.

 

Learn to use persuasive words in good faith, and only persuade people if you know that your ways will let them live better lives.

Written by Jon Anxin