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Convincing someone to join in

A few days ago I shared part of an email I received – the person was trying to convince me (and others as it was a mass email) to participate in her forums. Her email was unlikely to work, so I thought I’d share some ideas on how to convince someone to participate in something they are reluctant about.

1. Consider why they are reluctant – maybe it is lack of time or they think it is too expensive, or maybe it is just too hard or intimidating. Once you have the reason, or most likely reasons, answer those reasons.

For example, if people aren’t buying your product because they don’t think it has value for money, don’t tell them they are wrong but explain the value – “This product is fully reusable and made from sturdy materials that will last for years” or “This price includes delivery, a 12 month warranty and a spare battery pack.”

2. Point out the advantages for them, not you.

For example, “Did you know posting on forums can help your search engine results?” or “If you have questions, ask them on the forum – we have experts who may be able to help you” or “When you leave this event, you will know how to save hours every month”

3. Show respect and give the person space to say no without loosing face. No one likes being forced into anything or being nagged, and no one appreciates being made to feel stupid or cheap for not participating in something. So invite and then give them room to decide for themselves.

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