Today, a simple secret to getting more people to do what you ask them to do…

… Whether that’s doing you a simple favor…

… Buying what you’re selling…

… Responding to your marketing promotion…

… Or nearly anything else.

And this runs almost completely counter to what you might expect. In fact, it’s just about the exact opposite of what most marketing and selling gurus will tell you.

Maybe you’ve heard of the principal of reciprocity?

It’s based on the observation that when you do something for somebody, you’ve just created an emotional obligation in them to return the favor.

It’s the idea behind why we offer free reports as a lead generation piece, in the hopes of attracting buyers…

It’s why sales people buy lunch for their prospects…

It’s practically persuasion DOGMA.

And often, it works.

But I’ve seen a whole slew of studies recently that turn this on its head… (And one of the most revered figures in American history agrees…)

In short, if you want someone to do you a favor — and get them to say “yes!”… Ask for them to do you a slightly smaller favor first.

Yep. Don’t ask for just one favor… Ask for two!

That is, if you want to get past the gatekeeper, don’t offer to do them a favor… Ask for them to confirm a couple pieces of information for you, and be grateful… And then ask them to speak with your contact.

If you’re trying to get someone to hire you as a consultant… First ask them to fill out a “fit” questionnaire.

If you’re trying to get someone to buy an expensive product… First ask them to buy a very cheap product in the same line.

(Most of the best marketers I know are now using books as self-liquidating lead generation devices. First, a lead you get who pays shipping to get a free book — or some similar offer — is way better than a free lead. And second, this is a perfect way to use this new finding in persuasion!)

Study after study is coming in that supports this trend. Small favors beget bigger favors. Once someone has done one thing for you, they’re more likely to do another.

"I never do favors for ANYBODY -- but they do favors for ME!  Mwa ha ha ha ha!"

“I never do favors for ANYBODY — but they ALWAYS do favors for ME! Mwa ha ha ha ha!”

As for that figure from American history, it’s none other than Ben Franklin.

Franklin once wrote, “He that has once done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another than he whom you yourself have obliged.”

Wise words, Benny boy.

In fact, this has even been called The Ben Franklin Effect!

A couple other ideas for how to use this…

If you want to increase customer retention or stick rate, and decrease refunds… Ask for a testimonial or a referral during the guarantee period. Once they’ve given a testimonial or referral, how likely do you think it is that your customer will ask for a refund?

Also, ask for a comment on your blog to set up a sale later. So how about it? Why don’t go you scroll down and comment on this post?

Yours for bigger breakthroughs,

Roy Furr

Editor, Breakthrough Marketing Secrets