Cialdini lists the 6 forms of influence that almost all methods come from, they are:
- Commitment and Consistency
- Social Proof
One example is that Turkish carpet sellers would give you a free tour of the city. At the end of it you will probably end up with one or two carpets in reciprocation of their favour.
Another example are the Hare Krishnas that press a flower in your hand to solicit donatiosn. Inevitably you will feel obligated to pay for that flower as reciprocal action.
So what is the antidote? Don't take "favours".
Commitment and Consistency is the factor where once you said yes to a small truth or favour, you will feel obliged to be committed to your "new identity".
This technique was used by Vietcong interrogators to turn American GI's against American. They would try to find some way for the GI to agree to some flaw in the government, this in turn will cause him to start agreeing that the USA is bad and evil.
Because you had agreed to one flaw in the government, the GI then had to be consistent in condemning other things about the USA.
Social Proof is the factor that "if everyone does it, it can't be wrong."
This is the way endorsements work or in the classic Singaporean case, "if there's a long queue for it, it's got to be good."
More subtly, laugh tracks in TV comedies help to induce us to laugh, they give audio and "social" cues to find a joke funny.
One way this technique is used is to plant several people in an audience to clap after a performance, inevitably the rest of the crowd will follow.
Antidote: Be conscious of this. Look around for evidence to the contrary, think rationally.
Liking is the factor, that someone would be influenced if you like him.
For example, if you like something, even if evidence points contrary, you will dismiss them as anomalies or exaggerate strengths.
Authority is the factor that you will obey someone if that person has authority.
Celebrity endoresements lend credence to whatever products they endorse because they seem to have a kind of authority.
In other cases, soldiers may blindly go and follow orders that are morally wrong because "they were just following orders."
Antidote: Ask, "Is this guy really an expert?" and secondly, "How truthful can we expect the expert to be here?"
Scarcity is the trick when you think that the object you want is in limited supply or going to be snapped up quickly.
It forces you to move your hand or bid higher to get the object. It also increases your desire for it.
This is the bait used by certain stores when the say, limited supplies, first 30 customers only, etc.