Central to understanding persuasion is the concept of neutrality. The laws of persuasion are neither good nor evil.They simply exist. Just as nuclear energy can be used to create electricity or an atomic bomb, persuasion can be usedto create unity or to force compliance. Whether the outcome is good or bad depends on the person using the lawsand how that person applies the techniques of persuasion. Some people desire to win at any cost, using any availabletactics including misusing the laws of persuasion. These individuals are willing to use guilt, violence, intimidation,temptation, bribery, and blackmail to get the desired result.

However, when used properly, persuasion is our best friend. Through persuasion we create peace agreements,promote fund-raising efforts, and convince motorists to buckle up. Persuasion is the means by which the coach of anunderdog team inspires players to win. It is also the method employed by the Health Service to convince people tohave regular mammograms and prostate examinations, by managers to increase employee performance and morale,and by hostage negotiators to convince criminals to free their captives.


The art of persuading and influencing others always requires an audience, whether it is a single person, a small groupof ten, or a much larger assembly of listeners. This component is constant, so it is critical to know how to adaptquickly to your audience’s needs, wants, fears, and desires. Knowing how to research and read your audience willhelp you determine which tools or techniques will be the most effective in any given situation.

Using the wrongtechniques and tools, on the other hand, will automatically create barriers between you and your audience, which inturn will diminish your potential to persuade them. When you effectively integrate the principles and laws of persuasionwith the characteristics of influence, power, and motivation, your audience will always be friendly, and desirableresults will be the outcome.

Commitment is the highest ideal of ‘Maximum Influence’ because its impact is the most permanent and far-reaching.Your reputation as one possessing integrity, honor, trust, and respect will continuously inspire commitment fromeveryone you seek to persuade.

Getting people to do what you want and, at the same time, to enjoy it is not an accident or coincidence. You must usetechniques based on the proven laws of persuasion and influence to achieve such results. As you master thesetechniques, you will experience predictable control and influence over others.

Professional negotiators, sales professionals, and upper management professionals around the world use these laws. They are the same principles that help thousands of people gain control of their lives and their financial futures.


Have you ever tried the same approach with a customer that your boss uses on you and had it fail miserably?Becoming a ‘Master Persuader’ requires more than mimicking other persuaders. You must not only fully understand thewide variety of persuasive techniques available, but you must also be ready to use the techniques best suited for anygiven situation. Acquiring this level of skill demands a commitment to watch, analyze, study, and apply the concepts ofMaximum Influence.

Human nature is as varied as the colors of the rainbow. Human actions and thoughts are never perfectly predictablebecause each of us has different emotions, attitudes, beliefs, personalities, and traits. A beginner’s tendency is to findone persuasive technique that works and stick with that. Unfortunately, you cannot use the same persuasion tool oneveryone. Depending on the situation and the techniques you use, people will agree with you, refuse to listen, or beindifferent to your efforts. The Master Persuader has many tools and can therefore adapt and customize them to suitany situation or personality.

Do you want short-term temporary results or long-term permanent results? Effective persuasion has lasting impact,but it requires dedicated study and long-term commitment on the part of the persuader.


Mortensen in the book“Maximum Influence”explores and categorizes the twelve essential Laws of Persuasion. These laws form the basis of the art andscience of persuasion and influence. Adherence to these laws can help you understand and gain control of anysituation involving persuasion.

Our minds are programmed with automatic persuasion triggers. Most of us experiencepersuasive situations without realizing or thinking about it. Master Persuaders know what these triggers are and howto utilize them to their advantage. Understanding the Laws of Persuasion helps us become aware of how we areinfluenced without having conscious knowledge of it.

Learning to influence and persuade takes time, skill, and experience. What most people donot realize is that wealready instinctively use many of these laws in our daily communications. The same Laws of Persuasion that weunknowingly use every day are the very same ones Master Persuaders use deliberately, consciously, and consistently.

‘Master Persuaders’ make persuasion a habit. Think about how conscientious you were when you first started driving.Now, after years of practice, driving a car doesnot require as much thought or focus. Master Persuaders understandthe rules of persuasion and practice them constantly. They can apply the techniques subconsciously, without eventhinking about them. For them, the application of persuasion has become second nature.


According to Mortensen, there are two paths to persuasion: the conscious and the subconscious. Both paths can persuade others to your wayof thinking, but each path uses a very different means of processing information.

In the consciouspath, both you and your audience make an active or conscious attempt to understand, define, andprocess an argument. A person who is interested in your persuasive attempts will be highly motivated to listen. Assuch, she will also be able to consciously evaluate your message by carefully weighing the pros and cons of theevidence you present.

On the subconsciouspath, the listener spends little or no time processing the information. This approach results inthose automatic triggers. These knee-jerk reactions happen when you follow your intuitionor use a mental shortcut. Your mind reaches a decision without doing any logical processing. These subconsciousdecisions are largely driven by instinct and emotion. Individuals who spend lots of time on the subconscious path doso because they lack the time, motivation, desire, or ability to really listen to your message. They are not really involvedin the subject. They use their instinct or emotions instead of their intellect. Passive processing and automatic decisiontriggers rule their decision making.

The key is knowing when to use which method. Successful application of the laws and techniques requires that you become skilled at quickly identifying which ones will be the most effective in which situations.

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