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The master of persuasion: Interview with BJ Fogg

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How do you use persuasion to change others’ behavior — or your own?

2 days ago, I held a live Q&A with my mentor, Stanford psychologist BJ Fogg. He’s the father of the field of Captology — Computers As Persuasive Technologies — and he taught me most of what I learned in psychology and persuasion early on.

It was a fascinating call.

We covered material on:

  • Classic psychology studies on behavioral change and persuasion
  • Theoretical concepts from academia as well as applied techniques we’ve developed — and tested — ourselves
  • Rich examples of how humans behave irrationally — and how to use this to ethically influence others
  • Using persuasion techniques to get a dream job
  • Live Q&A with readers on how to motivate themselves, how to stay focused on an idea, our favorite psychology books, and more

My new technology system limited the number of concurrent listeners to 1,001, and we had 1,001 the entire time.

I thought I’d share some of the comments from people who attended:


Here are some of the other areas we covered:

  • How a classic persuasion technique increased persuasion from 17% to 76%
  • How “self-persuasion” increased persuasion 3% to 32% — on a major behavior
  • The psychology of “baby steps”
  • Why “motivation” is overrated (ever say, “I just can’t get the motivation to work out / work on this project”?)
  • Using behavior to change attitude (read that again…it’s opposite of what most people think)
  • Why we’re certain we’d leave a dangerous smoke-filled room…but why a simple intervention reduced that number from 75% leaving the room…to only 10% (and how you can protect against negative social influence)
  • Why “educating others” with more information is overrated
  • Persuasive triggers that work better than information alone
  • BJ’s tip on having your clients fall in love with you
  • A killer technique when doing group presentations
  • What the best salespeople and extroverts have in common — and how to systematically study it and adopt it
  • The difference between deep academic studies and pop psychology (and the value in both)
  • Our respective favorite books on psychology, influence, and persuasion

I’ve put together the full 1-hour recording for you, along with a transcript and recommended book list.

This is free to readers of “I Will Teach You To Be Rich” — but if you find it useful, as others have, all I ask is that you do two things.

1. Treat it like something you spent $1,000 on. Use it. Implement it. Don’t just listen to it and then move on with your life. There are dozens of profoundly useful and applicable techniques that you can use to kickstart a project, get out of a rut, improve your health, make more money, improve your relationships, excel at work, and challenge your beliefs about behavioral change.

2. Tell 3 friends about it. Every one of your friends has an area of their lives where effective persuasion techniques could help them excel. I kept it free so you could spread the ideas that BJ and I talk about. In a profound way, you have the chance to help your friends accomplish more. What could be more powerful than that?

Again, I invested thousands of dollars and 16 hours of work to put this webcast together. And it’s yours free, because I know that by investing in you now, you’ll be back to invest in my work — whether my free material or my premium courses.

You can get the recording of BJ Fogg and me, Ramit Sethi, here:

Enter your details to receive the recording:

100% privacy. No games, no B.S., no spam.

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by pok rap, jslade and Reader, Stephani. Stephani said: The master of persuasion: Interview with BJ Fogg: How do you use persuasion to change others’ behavior — or your… […]

  2. Ramit,

    I want to sign up, but the form doesn’t show up on this page *or* the linked page at /blog/hustle/week2/ !

    What’s a guy to do?

  3. I did. I also tried it in IE, which has no addons. It’s not there.

  4. Thanks, Ramit. I’ve met BJ several times through the Lab and I’m pleased he is sharing his knowledge in this way.

    When are you going to post the link for those of us who already subscribed? I missed the live broadcast caring for my newborn!

  5. Checked my email and there it is. Looking forward to listening to it today. Thanks, Ramit:)

  6. Danny Rosenhaus Link to this comment

    “Treat it like something you spent $1,000 on.” I love this quote. I wonder if that is why people don’t listen to free advice like they do advice that was paid for. If it is simply because advice you spent money on seems better than advice you got for free, plenty of people are missing out.

  7. I had no bones about you not opening the interview up to people who could not attend live (I wasn’t there). With that said, I just listened to it now and it was so rich I’m almost overwhelmed. So many good takeaways but the two that I am going to use now are “small requests beget larger ones” (it’s all about baby steps) and the importance of becoming an expert in something extremely focused. I don’t know what my dream job is, but that’s how I’m going to find it.

  8. kathryn meistrell Link to this comment

    would love to arm myself with techniques of psychology to feel more confident

  9. Completely unrelated to this posting, but I had a table last night at Kastel in Trump Soho and could’ve sworn I saw you walk right past it… true or false?

  10. I have been reading articles and have been watching videos which say that human behavior and reaction are more product of the environment rather than personal belief and motivation. these would be very helpful especially for people in sales, marketing and advertising.