Note: Influence: Chapter 5-6

(Illustration: Antelope Canyon in Northern Arizona. The reflective surfaces on the canyon walls make it difficult for cameras to get a good exposure. Is there a connection to human psychology? Photo by Daniel Seßler on Unsplash)

This year, I enthusiastically joined the B2B book club organized by Digital Marketing Connect (DMC) to continue expanding my learning field. (The last time I seriously read a marketing book was probably Philip Kotler’s Management Marketing during the remote reading club with Bob in college.)

Recently, Arizona has been a hot keyword due to tsmc’s (then rumored to be lowercase “t”) plans to establish a manufacturing plant there. Coincidentally, the selected book for the first few months of the book club is <Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion> by Dr. Robert B. Cialdini from Arizona State University, published in 1984. It seems to have had a significant influence on the marketing field for more than thirty years and is often cited as a reference in marketing-related materials (but it is also possible that I started looking for related information from this book).


<Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion> is a book that analyzes the six principles of influence on people from a psychological perspective:

  • reciprocity
  • commitment and consistency
  • social proof
  • liking
  • authority
  • scarcity

These six principles make up the main six chapters of the book.

Amazon offers various versions of the book for reading or listening. It is said that the book has sold at least three million copies. As a classic book, it is not expensive and is suitable for impulse buying (hmm).

Book Club

Our book club meets roughly every two weeks and spans across Europe, Asia, and America. The students on the West Coast are very enthusiastic and wake up super early. The whole group is motivated by these classmates who love learning and sharing. Many of the students are a mix of marketing practical experience, psychology background, and interdisciplinary learning. I am a little white rabbit who accidentally stumbled into the digital jungle, oops, I mean, exploring digital marketing for the first time :p

Our book club is well-structured, and each session consists of two main segments: Book Topic and B2B Topic. We also have a One thing I learnt segment for the week and a Topic Evaluator segment referenced from Toastmasters. Although sometimes we accidentally go over time, everyone has a positive reaction, and the more you participate, the more you gain!

Because this book is a professional psychology book written by a prominent psychology professor, it has been very challenging for me to keep up with my engineering-level English. In the first two Book Topics, I did not allocate enough time to read the book, so I could only tell stories based on the pictures during the book club. Later on, during the fourth chapter on Social Proof, I signed up to be the backup speaker for the Book Topic. Although I did not end up presenting (because our teammate A, who has a background in psychology and practical experience, is super strong), I forced myself to start reading from that chapter for those two weeks, and I got hooked. Then I signed up for the all-you-can-read plan for the remaining three chapters XD

Originally, I wanted to finish three chapters in two weeks, but I only completed the following two chapters. (During the same week, I also experienced a live streaming studio for the first time with four AWS architects and AWS Community Heroes. We discussed MVP online together. Thank you for asking questions about the three circles and the vomit comet during the Q&A. I will explain them in another post in the future. (You see, as long as you mention the future, it becomes technical debt ah ah ah (just kidding XDD)))

Chapter 5: LIKING

Reading notes:

Chapter 6: AUTHORITY

Reading notes:

Improve Efficiency

During the two weeks of reading, I also tried to improve reading and note-taking efficiency. I will share more details in the future, but for now, I will record some keywords.

  • As with project management, first determine the scope of reading.
  • As with product definition, first define the purpose of reading.
    • Later, I set two purposes:
      • Understand one or two of the longest and most classic cases from the many examples in the book
      • Find marketing practical cases corresponding to the chapter content
  • With a purpose (direction), start reading.
  • In the reading club sharing presentation, maintain the above two purposes and keep the book’s outline structure (book subtitles), but use pictures or keywords as supplementary content (to quickly skim through).
  • During reading, I referred to the sharing of a British straight-A Youtuber and used a split-screen method on a MacBook or iPad to read and take notes at the same time.
    • The left half shows the reading content. (Later, the displayed text was a bit too small, so I widened the display width of the left split area (am I getting old?!))
    • Take notes on the right half. This time, I used the open-source and cross-platform Joplin app and wrote notes in Markdown format.
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