Persuasive Game Changer for Online Shopping

Posted by on Sep 7, 2016 in ComLead, Integrated Marketing Communication

Whether we are conscious of it or not, we use and are exposed to persuasive tactics every day. We may use persuasion at work when trying to convince others to go with a certain idea or persuasion may be used on us when a family member wants help moving and offers free dinner as a reward. But persuasion is not always so easily recognized and companies are starting to use these tactics in clever ways.

For those who have been online shopping, you may be familiar with the pop-up ads that ask for your email address in exchange for some nominal discount on your purchase.  If you decide not to give an email you just click the “No Thanks” button. These ads are already quite persuasive since most people view giving an email address a small cost in exchange for 25% off of their awesome new online finds. However, companies have started increasing their persuasive edge with the addition of some new language.

While shopping online last week I noticed a change in these ads. The “No thanks” option now included the words “I would prefer to pay full price.” According to the Consistency Theory, when people do not behave in a way that is consistent with their beliefs, attitudes, values, etc. it causes cognitive dissonance which can lead to feelings of anxiety. I don’t think there are many people who would enjoy paying full price when they have the opportunity for a discount. Therefore, clicking the “No Thanks, I prefer to Pay Full Price” button would increase cognitive dissonance and  levels of discomfort for customers. In order to avoid these negative feelings customers would instead choose to simply give their email, or at least this is the

Persuasion tactics can be so powerful that even though I was aware of the tactic I still had trouble clicking the “No Thanks” button. Afterwards I found myself rationalizing why I didn’t pick it just to make myself feel better. Persuasion is all around us and it’s important for us to be able to identify these tactics in our everyday lives so that we can make well-informed decisions.

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