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Learning NLP - Basic NLP Persuasion Techniques

Neuro-linguistic Programming is model of communication that provides a basic framework of very powerful persuasion techniques. Learning NLP techniques will help you to be a better communicator and persuader. Here are a couple of very effective ones you can easily work into your personal and professional lives that will dramatically increase your persuasive ability.

1) Make it a point to communicate with people in the same manner that they think.  All of us have a preferred method of processing information. The big three ways we do it are visual, auditory and kinesthetic, or more basically, by sight, sound or touch. An example of each method would be:

Visual – “I can see your point of view.”

Auditory – “I hear what you are saying.”

Kinesthetic – “I feel I have a firm grasp on the subject.”

Notice the differences between the three? We usually perceive information presented in accordance with our preferred method more favorably than the same information presented outside our preferred mode.

To be more persuasive you first need to be more aware of how others are thinking. Once you learn someone’s preferred method of communication simply talk to them using the same reference system. For instance:

“The best part about vacationing in Hawaii is the beautiful sunsets, the view of the mountains and all the rainbows you see after it rains.”

“Yes, I see what you mean.”

With practice this will come naturally to you and you won’t even have to think about it.

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2)  A second powerful persuasion technique is to use a person’s name. We all love to hear the sound of our own name, and when we hear it we tend to look more favorably on the person using it. The trick here is to use a person’s name in a natural manner. When we force the use of someone’s name we appear to be manipulative.

“Bob let me ask you a question. If you find a car here today you like, and Bob, if I can arrange a payment you can afford, are you prepared to buy today Bob?” Sounds manipulative, doesn’t it? (Note the "tie down" close.)

The best way to find out and use someone’s name is to ask them about it. “Do you prefer Bob or Robert?" “Is it okay if I call you Bob?” Then use your awareness of the situation to naturally insert the use of someone’s name into the conversation. The use of a person’s name however, is a very powerful persuasive technique.

3) A third technique is to tell people what to do. Most people want to be told what to do and, if it is done subtly, this is a VERY powerful persuasion tactic. This is the theory behind embedded commands and subliminal communications.

The classic example of this is the salesman who says something like, “By now you must be ready to make a decision today.” Note the “Buy Now” and “Make a decision today” embedded commands.

Pay special attention to the words your customer is using. If they have a habit of using a certain word repeatedly you should start to embed that word into your speech pattern. Like the first technique of matching their sensory method of thinking, this will help you to speak the same unconscious language as they do.

Be flexible in your approach to communication, and remember that the largest part of communication is non-verbal. Along with matching how your customer speaks and thinks, you should match their physical posture as well. This is known as pacing and leading. “Pacing” being the matching part…if your client is crossing his arms then you should cross yours as well, with “leading” being a check as to whether or not you have rapport.

To “lead” all you have to do is, after a period of matching your posture with someone, simply change your posture and see if they follow suit. If they do then you are in rapport. In addition to matching their body posture you can match their facial expression, breathing pattern, voice tempo and emotional state. This process, known as “matching and mirroring”, is an extremely powerful rapport building technique.

These methods are merely an introduction to persuasion tactics. Used consistently they are very powerful. The best way to master these techniques is to study and practice them until it becomes a natural part of who you are.

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