The Pulse

The Counterintuitive Way to be More Persuasive

If you’ve ever sold anything, you’re probably familiar with the concept of perceived value – the customer’s perception of a product or service in comparison to a competitor’s. Perceived value dictates what price the public is willing to pay for a service – and it doesn’t always line up with an item or service’s actual value.

The ‘dilution effect’ is the name given to a cognitive quirk that shapes our perceived value of any given set. This is because our minds don’t add together information, but instead they average it. Would you rather buy a smaller dish set with everything in pristine condition, or a larger one with several broken pieces? According to the research, the answer is overwhelmingly the smaller one – even if you’ll get more pieces overall with the larger set, and even at a reduced price.

The same concept can be applied to influencing others.  Adding weaker, less compelling arguments to support your main point can actually reduce the weight of your overall argument!

To learn more, watch The Counterintuitive Way to be More Persuasive by Niro Sivanathan, presented by TED.

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