The Final Four of the Seven Levels of Influence
In episode 69 of Your Law Firm is a Business, we covered the first three levels of influence from Robert Cialdini’s book “Influence:” reciprocity, liking, and social proof. In episode 83, we finished off with the final four.
Influence has a lot to do with sales, but it goes much further than that. We use the power of persuasion throughout our day-to-day lives, sometimes without even realizing it. The seven levels of influence will overall help you to achieve more yeses and help more than just yourself.
Learn more about the final four levels below, and don’t forget to listen to episode 69 for a breakdown of the first three!
- Authority – This is the tendency to obey legitimate authorities, and it comes from systemic socialization from the time we are little to believe that obeying authority is the right thing to do, so now we use it as a decision-making shortcut. This can be especially useful when talking to potential new clients, displaying titles in the office, wearing suits to consultations, and even the physical status symbols that people see in the office.
- Scarcity – People give more value to something that they believe is less available. It’s commonly seen in marketing and the purchase of consumer products or “collectibles.” This works with information, too. The more access is restricted, like a banned book or insider information, the more we want access to it. This applies to a law firm because a client may feel like they’re running out of time or will lose custody of their kids. However, the more information you give them will decrease the level of scarcity they feel.
- Commitment & Consistency – Consistency is valued in our society, and it makes decisions easier because we don’t have to re-evaluate each new situation – we can stick with the decision we made last time since it worked out then. If we make an initial commitment, even a relatively small one, there is a good chance that we’ll make it again, especially if it was made actively, publicly, effortfully, and viewed as internally motivated, meaning we think it was our idea.
- Unity – Similar to the liking level, we want to say “yes” to someone we consider one of us. We use the experiences and decisions of other group members to guide our own decisions. So the goal is to define the group we are a part of in a beneficial way. If you, as an attorney, have been in your client’s shoes before, for example, in a car crash or had a loved one die without a will, sharing this with your clients will likely positively influence them.
If you want to learn more about the seven levels of influence, check out https://www.nextlevel.legal/episode/lfn083.