Three Principles Of Persuasion

Hi, my name is 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 individuals brand. Do you trust this person, do they have authority in the subject on which they’re speaking, and do you like the person and are willing to listen to them.

Pathos is the emotional connection. This is all about how it matters to you personally. Does what their saying have any relevance to your life at all and do you really care about what they have to say.

 Lastly is Logos, the logic behind the argument. Does what they’re saying make sense, does it follow facts and data, and does it come to a reasonable conclusion?

 So there you have it, Ethos, Pathos, and Logos. You need all three in order to persuade someone of an idea. Now, philosophy is great but how can you translate these three different philosophies in actual sales tactics?

 Well, it depends on the context of course, but let’s say you’re building a website and want to focus on Ethos. How do you promote brand? Well, you’ve seen this done in a number of different ways. You’ve seen this in things like Meet Our Team pages where you can learn more about the individual staff members, you’ve seen it in things like testimonials—here’s what people are saying about our company, and you’ve seen it in things like Partners—here’s all the people 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 describe 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 of your saved time and here’s what you can do with all of your saved money.”

 And for Logos, the logic behind the argument, you’ve seen this done in things like diagrams describing how a product actually functions. And you’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 you have it. Ethos, Pathos, and Logos, and different methods 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 three things were not fulfilled in you. Was it Ethos, perhaps you didn’t trust the person selling it to you? Was it pathos, perhaps you didn’t actually have any need the product to begin with? Or was it logos, you didn’t actually think the product could do what they said it could do? Because once all three of these are fulfilled, the only thing you have to negotiate is price.

 Thanks for hanging out with me, that’s today’s marketing minute—a little bit more again but that’s ok. Remember, marketing is a battle of perception, not product! I’ll see you at the next event.