What are the principles of brand management

Principles for advertising

Advertising PrinciplesHow to use the 6 principles of persuasion

Robert B. Cialdini is not just anyone. The man is a professor of psychology and marketing at Arizona State University. His work "The Psychology of Persuasion" has been translated into more than 20 languages ​​and has sold millions of copies. Did you notice? Principle three of the art of persuasion according to Professor Cialdini was applied here: The social proof. A contribution by Bernd Röthlingshöfer from Werbepraxis aktuell.

Principle 1: The principle of reciprocity

Those who get something usually feel obliged to give something back. If your favorite Italian gives you a grappa at the end of the meal, you will thank them with a generous tip. And anyone who is allowed to try cherries at the market stall is at least very reluctant not to buy them afterwards.

This is how you can use the principle of reciprocity in your advertising:
  • Make free trial offers.
  • Hand out samples and gifts.
  • Rely on trust, e.g. B. by waiving prepayment.
  • Offer generous guarantees (100 percent satisfaction guarantee).

Principle 2: The principle of commitment

Once people have made up their minds, it is far more difficult to dissuade them. So anyone who has made the decision to buy a new car or to go on holiday will hardly be able to reverse it, even if they are fully entitled to their right of withdrawal.

This is how you can use the principle of liability in your advertising:
  • Integrate order forms into your advertising and marketing measures.
  • Also give requests for information material or appointments to be binding. Text examples: «Please send me your catalog XY.» "Yes, I want to take an appointment for a consultation."
  • Always include a line for your personal signature in printed advertising. This also increases the character of liability.

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Principle 3: The social proof or: What others do will probably be right

Man is a herd animal. We have known this more and more precisely since the triumph of the Internet and social media. People orientate themselves by what the others are doing and they act in the same way. Have you ever felt the uneasiness of being the first to sit down in an empty, unfamiliar restaurant? Isn't the inn with the jam-packed tables the better choice?

Here's how you can use the principle of social proof in your advertising:
  • Show off your top products as bestsellers or best-selling products.
  • Collect and post positive reviews and comments from customers.
  • Use convincing facts like: "80 percent of our customers choose XY."

By the way: Not all social evidence is factual. The book industry constantly presents us with “upcoming bestsellers” and ensures that these prophecies come true. Such alleged bestsellers are printed in large numbers, delivered to bookstores, and the sheer quantity and clever placement on the bestseller tables alone make them into bestsellers.

Principle 4: The sympathy principle or: sympathy decides

Can the nice bank advisor sell you a bad product? Yes he can. Even the look of waitresses and connoisseurs is rarely an attempt at flirtation, but rather a sales tactic.

This is how you can use the principle of sympathy in your advertising:
  • Don't just let the facts speak for themselves, present your company in a personable way.
  • Use photos that arouse positive feelings in the viewer (babies, animals, people, nature).
  • Present pictures of your employees and make sure they have a friendly facial expression - but no passport photos, please - and of course you must obtain the consent of the employees for this.
  • Do not act anonymously, but focus on the boss as a person.
  • Use personal email addresses ([email protected] instead of [email protected]).

Principle 5: The Principle of Authority

People let themselves be convinced by authorities. So anyone who has power and reputation or is considered an expert will more easily convince us of their products or services.

This is how you can use the principle of authority in your advertising:
  • Highlight successes such as awards, prizes, positive test results, etc. in your advertising and marketing measures.
  • Hold lectures or impart your knowledge in workshops and courses.
  • Publish specialist books or specialist articles in magazines.
  • Build your social reputation with a blog.
  • Use work clothing or clothing that sets you apart in a positive way.

Principle 6: The principle of scarcity

Everyone knows that from buying a car. After long negotiations, the color, upholstery, accessories and various extras were negotiated, the binding price offer is now on the table and then it says: “Unfortunately, I can only guarantee you this price until October 1st. We get a new price list from the company. You only have two days to decide. " Nothing speeds up a purchase decision process more than an indication of a short supply. This signals to the customer: If you take too long to make a decision, someone else will snatch the offer from you.

This is how you can use the principle of scarcity in your advertising:
  • Make clear a time limit for your offer and do not set the period too long. The shorter the better. Because the customer then has to make a quick decision. Examples of wording: “Only valid for 3 days”, or: “Offer of the month, decide by October 1st and you will receive a 10 percent discount”.
  • Limit the amount of products offered. Then the customer can consider himself lucky to be one of the few successful bargain hunters. Examples of wording: “While stocks last”, “Only issue one copy per person”, “One-off campaign”, “Only XY items in stock”.


The 6 basic principles of persuasion apply both in sales talks and in advertising communication with your customers. Use at least one or more of these principles to be more persuasive and more successful.

  • Bernd Röthlingshöfer, Werbepraxis aktuell www.xl-copy.de
  • "The psychology of persuasion" by Robert B. Cialdini, Huber Hans publishing house