3 Principles of Persuasion And How They Affect Sales Communications

sales persuasion

Hi my name’s Nate Bauer. I’m on the board for PMG. Let’s talk about three principles of persuasion and how they affect your sales communication.

Aristotle states there are three principles of persuasion one must adhere to in order to persuade another of an idea. Those principles are ethos, pathos and logos.

Ethos is the individual’s brand. Do you trust this person? Do they have authority in the subject on which they are speaking? And do you like the person and are more or less willing to listen to them?

Pathos is the emotional connection. This is all about how it matters to you personally. Does what they’re saying have any relevancy to your life at all? Do you actually really care about what they have to say?

Then lastly is logos, the logic behind the argument. Does what they’re saying makes sense? Does it follow facts and data? Does it come to a reasonable conclusion?

So, there you have it. Ethos, pathos and logos. You need all three fulfilled in order to persuade someone of an idea. Now, philosophy is great but how can you translate these three different philosophies into actual sales tactics? Well it depends on the context of course, but let’s say you’re building a website and you want to focus on ethos – how do you promote a brand? Well you’ve seen this done in a number of different ways. Whether you’ve seen this and things like “meet our team” pages where you can learn more about individual staff members. And you’ve seen in things like testimonials. Here’s what people are saying about our company. And you’ve seen it in things like partners – here are the all the different businesses we’ve worked with in the past. They trust us, you should trust us as well. All of these things build credibility and ethos.

For pathos, the emotional connection. You’ve seen this mostly done in written content describing the benefits of a product. Benefits including things like, “here’s what your life looks like after you utilize this product. Here’s what you can do with all your save time and here’s what you can buy with all of your saved money”.

And then for logos, the logic behind the argument. You’ve seen this done in things like diagrams describing how a product actually functions. And we’ve also seen it in comparison charts, “here’s why product A is better than product B and the different features between them.

So, there have it, ethos, pathos, logos. Different tactics of achieving all three. Now before I leave you, a little bit of homework for you. Next time you go to the store and decide not to buy something. Consider which one of these the three things was not fulfilled in you. Was it ethnos? Perhaps you didn’t trust the person selling it to you. Was it pathos? Turns out you didn’t actually have any need for the product in the first place. Or was it logos? You didn’t actually think the product could do what they said it could do? Because once all three things are fulfilled, the only thing you have left to negotiate is price.

Thanks for hanging out with me. That’s today’s marketing minute. Little bit more again, but that’s fine. Remember, marketing is battle of perception not product and I will see you at the next event.