I know (the book) one our team has used extensively is Robert B. Cialdini’s Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. Our Director of Digital Marketing Wes Marsh recommended it to me, and it’s helped immensely since I’ve made the switch from traditional journalism into content marketing. Here’s a bit more about why Wes loves it from Wes’s perspective:
One of the most important marketing books I’ve come across isn’t a marketing book at all. Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion classifies as a psychology book, but I firmly believe it should be standard reading for all marketers. It gives readers an insight into the psychological triggers that drive most human behaviors — and thus helps marketers unlock their target audiences. Understanding those triggers give marketers the opportunity to create unique buying experiences and brand interactions.
Robert B. Cialdini presents the most powerful principles that drive human behavior: reciprocity, liking, authority, social proof, commitment/consistency, and scarcity. Not only does Cialdini offer various scenarios in which we experience these principles each day, he also gives defenses to them. These tips can easily be applied by a savvy marketer to both reach a target audience and also understand their potential hesitations with your product (without manipulating them, of course). Just think of the small phrases we use in marketing every day that drive people to act through these basic principles: ‘sale ends this week’ (scarcity), ‘Only 5 tickets left’ (scarcity), Social Proof – testimonials, using brand icons.