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The Power of Persuasion: How to Get Clients



Once you start your new VA business, the next step is acquiring clients for your business. This is an ongoing process necessary to maintain your business and reputation, especially as a VA with contract work. We have created this list of tips from Robert Cialdini’s “Influence: The Science Of Persuasion” to help you use the power of persuasion to get clients.


Gave Me a Cookie, Got You a Cookie

If you haven’t seen New Girl yet, you probably don’t understand the title of our first tip (and you’re seriously missing out).

Regardless, the principle is reciprocity, or the exchange of a favour for a favour. In fear of being considered “ungrateful” social norms compel us to respond to a favour, with another favour. Using reciprocity in your business strategy can be done through the use of giveaways or freebies. This encourages people to support your business because they are given something for free, and will feel inclined to return the favour.


No Hypocrisy

In order to save face, people will try their best to avoid being labelled as a hypocrite, or of having no sense of commitment. In order to use this to your advantage, there are a number of things you need to consider:

  • Your sense of commitment as a brand (how consistent you are in your branding and marketing, as well as services/testimonials)

  • Once we have committed to something, we’re more likely to stick to it, either out of guilt, fear or excitement

  • Clients are likely to stay loyal to brands and businesses that have not “steered them wrong”, so if you are trying to chase clients that already have VA, you’ll be less successful than new businesses or people seeking out opportunities

  • Getting people to commit to something small and relatively free of charge can establish a sense of commitment and encourage them to be loyal to you (offering free trials)


The Mean Girls/Guys

Society urges us to “go with the flow” when it comes to trends and aspects of our decision making. Humans have a general fear of going against the grain when in fear of being “on the outs” with social trends. This common phenomenon is known as social proof.

For example, if you are shopping and see two similar stores, but one has a line up to get in, and the other is relatively empty- you’re more likely to want to go to the busier store. We lean on popular trends or things, either for the belief that it is “better” because it’s obviously more popular, or because we are afraid of being looked down upon by groups.


Fake It ‘Till You Make It

Say for instance that you’re a budding social media agency. The best way to showcase your work, and to market your business, is to speak to the masses, and relay your confidence and knowledge through social media. Pointing out your authority on a subject (Instagram marketing, hashtags, etc.) will encourage people to flock to you- even if the information you’re sharing is relatively common knowledge with hints of wisdom.

Using your authority (or appearance of authority) when marketing, is important because it instills a sense of confidence in your work, and tells people that they are investing in knowledge, not just a hobby. Additionally, by showing your credentials or other accomplishments, you give proof of your qualifications which aids in enforcing that authority.


Almost Gone!

Creating a sense of scarcity for your products or services is an age-old practice, but well worth it. It pushes people to take the plunge if they are considering your business, or it intrigues potential customers through the time-stress.

Using market research, figure out your main competitors and find ways that your company differentiates from them. Then you can establish how few businesses like yours exist and why it’s crucial clients invest in your products and/or services.

Another way you can do this is by creating a sense of urgency. Limited-time sales or only having enough room for so many clients at once, is a great way to encourage people that they don’t want to miss out on a possible opportunity.

For questions, please reach out to us using the contact page on our website. Also, make sure you follow TVL on social media for more business tips, travel inspo and lifestyle content!

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