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Yes! 50 Secrets from the Science of Persuasion Paperback – 8 Nov 2007

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Product details

  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Profile Books; First Thus edition (8 Nov. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846680166
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846680168
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.7 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,998 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


In a world where persuasion is a more and more important part of what governments and organisations have to do, this book is invaluable. (Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive RSA)

You should read this book. You should read it because you'll enjoy it; because it's perfectly pitched for smart businesspeople; because it's easy to dip into while waiting for a colleague or a plane; and because if you don't someone else is going to get one over on you. (Octavius Black Management Today)

YES! is the Freakonomics of social psychology. It's a handbook to the world. (The Times)

The ideas in this book changed my way of looking at the world. This thinking is the real deal. Want to be in on the next big idea? Don't miss out. (Daniel Finkelstein Comment Editor of The Times)

A good read, in the Freakonomics mold. (Evening Standard)

Surprising, provocative, fun. (Tim Harford Author of The Undercover Economist) entertaining guide to 50 tried and tested methods of persuasion. (Esquire)

Fascinating, really. (Jon Ashworth The Business)

Are there any nice little books I could buy as a present that wouldn't insult the recipient's intelligence? Yes. Or rather Yes!. It will help you understand why you're buying Christmas presents when you don't want to and when the people you're buying them for don't want you to either. (Stuart Jeffries Guardian)

If a CEO or head of state was limited to a single advisor mynomination would be Bob Cialdini, the world's most practical socialpsychologist and master of "influence". In this book Cialdini teams up witha gifted young scholar and a seasoned consultant to produce a book filledwith wisdom. Read it and the next time someone asks you to sell snow to the Eskimos or solve global warming you will say "sure, but do you have anything hard I can do? (Richard H. Thaler, co-author of Nudge)

This book ranks in the top 10 business books that I've ever read (Guy Kawasaki, author of The Art of the Start)

Book Description

Practical advice on how to influence people from the experts: Steve Martin, Noah J Goldstein and Amazon bestselling author Robert Cialdini

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Rolf Dobelli TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 17 Sept. 2008
Format: Hardcover
Yes! is an entertaining book - to match the title, it's a blast! Noah J. Goldstein, Steve J. Martin and Robert B. Cialdini provide, as the subtitle indicates, 50 distinct examples, explanations or techniques to help you become more persuasive. They present the general principles of persuasion and discuss an abundance of specific, detailed uses. The authors offer numerous studies (their own and others'), hypothetical situations, and elucidations of what to do and what not to do. They advocate the idea that you can and should test persuasive strategies. They are convincing, and they write wittily and breezily. getAbstract recommends this useful book to anyone engaged in persuasion, including executives, marketers, trainers and salespeople.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 2 Oct. 2008
Format: Paperback
Yes! could have been more appropriately titled as Influence 2 because the book is simply a series of brief examples that illustrate Professor Robert Cialdini's key principles described in his book, Influence (social proof, authority, commitment/consistency, scarcity, reciprocity, and personal liking). If you loved that book and want to dive deeper into its lessons, Yes! is a perfect choice.

If you haven't yet read Influence, I recommend that you read that book before this one. Without Professor's explanations of why these principles work, the case histories in Yes! don't seem so special and interesting. Otherwise, you will probably just see Yes! as a bunch of unrelated stories, many of which don't apply to your marketing challenges. I would expect most people who read Yes! who haven't read Influence to rate Yes! with three stars.

When you do read Influence, be sure to get the latest edition (the fifth edition came out in August 2008). Otherwise, you'll miss out on insights.

I hired Professor Cialdini to speak to one of my research organizations, Share Price Growth 100, a number of years ago and the members rated him very highly for being able to apply the lessons of his research to the financial markets. I was intrigued to see some financial market examples in Yes!

Be more persuasive in getting an ethical point across!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By John M. Ford TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 11 Jun. 2011
Format: Paperback
"Researchers are often on the lookout for ways to apply their scientific knowledge to make existing policies and procedures even more effective." This book uses social science research to suggest fifty ways we can persuade more effectively. It draws on over half a century of the scientific study of persuasion. The authors recommend this research as a more reliable source of effective strategies that our individual experiences or intuitions.

Each of the book's fifty issues is presented in a brief, readable chapter that begins with a question. Here are five of the more interesting questions:

1. What common mistake causes messages to self-destruct? If you mention how many people are doing something bad, you may unintentionally provide "social proof" that this behavior is acceptable.

2. Does fear persuade or does it paralyze? Fear only motivates us to action if we have a clear and effective means of reducing the danger.

3. Start low or start high? Which will make people buy? Lower auction starting prices convince more people to start bidding and this increased participation convinces others to join in. Once someone bids, they keep bidding to avoid losing their investment of time and effort.

4. What can a box of crayons teach us about persuasion? Unusual names ("Kermit Green") that engage us in solving a puzzle make crayon color names easier to remember.

5. When does letting the call go to voicemail cause a hang-up in your influence? People from individualistic cultures value the informational aspect of communication while those from collectivistic cultures value the relationship-building aspect. An "individualist" might offend some of his colleagues by always letting voice mail answer the phone.
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52 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Clive P L Young on 15 April 2008
Format: Paperback
'50 secrets from the science of persuasion'... Well, I'd never heard of `the science of persuasion' before and this is actually a series of short case studies based on social psychology academic papers published over the last decade or so. Each case study is presented as a problem, the experiment and results are described and then a `scientifically proven' solution is suggested. It's an appealing way of covering a broad subject and most of the results are thought-provoking and maybe genuinely useful. The only problem is that these snippets are not structured or ordered in any way so unfortunately fact fatigue sets in after about 30, and by the time you struggle to 50 the science of persuasion began to seem a rather disorganised discipline. An admirable book, but you might have thought `persuasion scientists' would have known a bit better how to determine exactly how much is a `good thing'.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By S. Kukielka on 11 Dec. 2007
Format: Paperback
I have read The Tipping Point and Freakonomics and enjoyed them immensely. Yes! is a similar type of book - really enjoyable and based on what appears to be pretty solid evidence and research. It's practical too. As enjoyable as The Tipping Point and Freakonomics were I was left wondering how I could use the information. Short of impressing people at dinner parties with my new found knowledge of why drug dealers live with their mothers the personal applications of both books are few and far between. Not so with Yes! It is a treasure trove not only of the theory of persuasion but also how to put the theory into practice and become more persuasive (and let's be honest who doesn't want to be more persuasive?). In my humble opinion I think Yes! is highly readable, highly practical and highly recommended.
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