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Exactly what to say – The magic words for influence and impact

“Exactly what to say” is a book written by Phil M Jones. Throughout the author’s studies of people, human relationships and business interactions, he has been amazed by how some people achieve dramatically different results than others with what seem to be the exact same ingredients.

Successful people know exactly what to say, how to say it and how to make it count.

Magic words are sets of words that talk straight to the subconscious brain.

The magic words shared here are tried, tested and proven to deliver results when applied properly.

With this book summary, Phil M. Jones gives you powerful insight into what makes people tick and learn how simple changes you can apply instantly can make your life so much easier.

The advice is aimed at increasing your business success, but every principle discussed is easily transferable into any industry and every area of life, to help you become more persuasive and influential and have a bigger impact in all that you do.

Exactly what to say: I’m Not Sure If It’s for You, But…

To introduce something to just about anybody, at just about any point in time, that is completely rejection-free, use “I’m not sure if it’s for you, but…

Opening a statement with the words, “I’m not sure if it’s for you,” causes the listener’s subconscious brain to hear, “There’s no pressure here.” By suggesting that they may not be interested, you naturally increase their intrigue.

The word “but” negates everything that was said prior, so when you say to somebody, “I’m not sure if it’s for you, but…,” what the little voice inside your listener’s head hears is, “You might want to look at this.”

When you say to somebody, “I’m not sure if it’s for you, but.. .,” the little voice inside your listener’s head hears, “You might want to look at this.”

EXAMPLES

Here are a few examples to help you in your daily routine:

I’m not sure if it’s for you, but would you happen to know someone who is interested in (insert the results of your product or service)?

I’m not sure if it’s for you, but we have plans on Saturday, and you’re welcome to join us.

 

exactly what to say

 

Exactly what to say: Open-Minded

People like to see themselves as open-minded. As you know this crucial fact, you can easily give yourself a fair advantage within your conversations.

When introducing a brand-new idea to a stranger, friend, prospect or team member, using the words, “How open-minded are you?” This will naturally attract people toward the very thing that you’d like them to support. Everybody wants to be open-minded.

EXAMPLES

Here are a few examples of the words in practice:

How open-minded would you be about trying this as an alternative?

Would you be open-minded about giving this a chance?

Exactly what to say: what do you know?

The best way to overcome the “I know best” mentality of many people is to question the knowledge on which the other person’s opinion was founded.

Some people want to argue with you and the conversation quickly becomes a debate. To overcome this kind of conflict, don’t aim at winning the argument. Instead, you must question the knowledge on which the other person’s opinion was founded. It’s exactly what to say.

EXAMPLES

Examples you could use in the real world are…

What do you know about us, our business and the way we do things differently? What do you know about everything that has changed since (insert event)?

What do you know about how things really work here?

People also read:

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How Would You Feel if?

The real world tells us that people will work far harder to avoid a potential loss than they will to achieve a potential gain.

By introducing a future scenario with the words, “How would you feel if…?” you allow the other person to time travel to that moment and imagine the emotions that would be triggered at that point.

EXAMPLES

Examples might be something like…

How would you feel if this decision led to your promotion?

– How would you feel if your competition passed you?

How would you feel if you turned this around?

Creating these conditional future scenarios using the words, “How would you feel if…?” gets people excited about their future and gives them a reason to move either toward the good news or away from the bad news. It’s exactly what to say.

Just imagine

For a decision to come true, you must have first at least imagined yourself doing it.

Creating pictures in the minds of others is done by telling stories. When you hear “Just imagine,” the brain pictures the very scenario you are creating.

EXAMPLES

Just imagine how things will be in six months’ time once you have implemented this.

Just imagine what your boss would say if you missed this opportunity.

When would be a Good Time?

The preface “When would be a good time to…?” prompts the other person to assume that there will be a good time and that no is not an option. It’s exactly what to say.

EXAMPLES

When would be a good time for you to take a proper look at this?

When would be a good time to get started?

When would be a good time to speak next?

Simple swaps

The psychology behind this technique is that it involves turning an open question into a closed one, resulting in you receiving a guaranteed outcome or answer.

A simple change of wording puts you in control. Swap the phrase, “Do you have any questions?” with the improved, “What questions do you have for me?”

A simple change of wording moves this from out of your control to completely in your control. These sets of Magic Words demonstrate how changing a couple of words can make all the difference in the results you get from your conversations.

Sitraka: It also reminds me of an anecdote as I opened a bank account. The person responsible after doing all the paperwork asked me: “How much would you like to deposit?” She didn’t even ask whether I brought money or not but just immediately assumed I would deposit money. This is another example of simple swaps.

You have three options

The words, “As I see it, you have three options,” help the other person through the decision-making process and allow you to appear impartial in doing so.

People hate to feel manipulated and nearly always want to feel like they made the final decision. When someone needs help deciding, using these words can help narrow their gaze, reduce their choices and make it easier for them to pick.

Two types of people

Help people to choose by removing some of the choices and creating easy options.

Asking people to decide for themselves who they are with the Magic Words “two types of people” prompts a near-instant decision. The second someone hears, “There are two types of people in this world,” the little voice in their head immediately wonders which one they are, and they wait with bated breath to hear the choices. It’s exactly what to say.

Examples:

There are two types of people in this world: those who hate themselves, and those who make a little step every day to accept who they are.

There are two types of people in this world: those who resist change in favor of nostalgia and those who move with the times and create a better future.

The options here are clearly stacked in favor of the decision you would like them to pick.

I bet you’re a bit like me

The Magic Words “I bet you’re a bit like me” often result in the other person comfortably agreeing with you. It can help just about anybody agree to just about anything, especially strangers. It’s exactly what to say.

I bet you’re a bit like me: you enjoy working hard now, knowing that it will pay dividends in the future.

I bet you’re a bit like me: you hate watching trashy TV in the evening and would rather work on something beneficial.

If… Then

By creating “if… then” sandwiches, you can position guaranteed outcomes that are very difficult not to believe.

Creating a scenario using the preface “if” and adding a second scenario with the preface “then” means that people are highly likely to believe the outcome.

Examples

If you decide to give this a try, then I promise you won’t be disappointed.

If you put this in your stores, then I am certain your customers will like it.

Don’t Worry

It’s particularly powerful with people who are nervous, apprehensive or show signs of concern.

Say the words, “Don’t worry,” and the tension just pours out of them as they become more relaxed.

“Don’t worry” is particularly useful in high-stress scenarios, when confronted with someone who is panicked—it puts people at ease. It’s exactly what to say.

Examples include…

Don’t worry. You’re bound to be nervous right now.

Don’t worry. I felt just the way you feel right now before I started, and look at me now.

Most people

When you tell people what most people would do, their brain says, “I’m most people, so perhaps that is what I should do too.”

Actually, indecision is the biggest thing that stands in the way of progress, and these words can help jump people out of procrastination in a flash.

Most people put the words “most people” into their daily conversations, and most of those people see an immediate positive effect. It’s exactly what to say.

For example: Most people in your circumstances would grab this opportunity with both hands, knowing that there is almost no risk.

The good news

By prefacing things with, “The good news is…,” you cause people to face forward with optimism and zap any negative energy out of the conversation.

These words provide you with a tool to spin a negative into a positive using a technique called labeling.

It’s exactly what to say. If somebody is questioning their ability to do something, then you can respond with, “Look, the good news is that we have dozens of people who were in exactly the same situation when they first started, and they have gone on to be successful and are here to support you, too.”

What makes you say that?

Success in negotiating is all about maintaining control in a conversation, and the person in control is always the person who is asking the questions.

When facing an objection, the worst thing you could do is to respond with a counterargument and make statements to disprove your counterpart’s opinion. Instead, you can tackle each of these common objections effectively by being inquisitive about them and asking a question in the opposite direction.

The customer says, “I need to speak to somebody else before I make a decision about this.” You say, “What makes you say that?”

The customer says, “Really, I don’t have all the money right now.” You say, “What makes you say that?”

This shift of control now leaves the other person obligated to give an answer and fill in the gaps in their previous statement. It’s exactly what to say.

If I can… will you?

This particularly works when your counterpart pushes back with reasons as to why they cannot do the things you would like them to do.

This same thing appears in our personal lives when people make excuses about why they cannot make it to events or celebrations.

You have the power in these situations to remove the barrier by responding with a powerful question that eliminates the other person’s argument.

For instance, “If I can pick you up and drop you off at home, then will you be able to be ready for seven pm? It’s exactly what to say.

Enough

In every set of circumstances in which you involve yourself in the decision-making process, you have the power to influence the actions of others.

Imagine that you’re in the grocery store. You are deliberating between four and eight apples. If you were being served in that transaction and were asked the direct question, “Would eight apples be enough for you?” your instant response would be “yes,” and the decision would be made.

This use of words drives the recipient to answer the direct question, and “yes” becomes the path of least resistance.

It’s all about making it a lot easier for the other person to reach a little higher than they may have done otherwise.

Integrating this principle into all conversations involving your business can have a huge impact on your results. It’s exactly what to say. Just imagine if every transaction contained one more unit.

 

People also read:

Never split the difference summary

Building a storybrand

Getting to yes summary

Crucial conversations summary