All businesses need to motivate customers to do something, whether that’s buying a product or a service. Does manipulative advertising work? What are the most common strategies of manipulative advertising? If you’re a buyer, how do you spot them? If you’re a seller, should you use them? We’ll cover the six most common manipulative advertising tactics. We’ll look at their pros and cons and discuss whether they actually work, or if there’s a more effective way to advertise.
How do consumers make purchasing decisions? As a buyer, are you aware of your decision-making process when you decide to buy something? As a seller, how can you exploit the psychology of how consumers make buying decisions? We’ll cover how consumers make buying decisions and why, in order to sell your product, you need to connect with buyers at the gut level. Learn why buying decisions aren’t always rational.
What is Paul Ekman’s FACS (facial action coding system)? What can it teach you about how transparent our emotions really are? Can you read someone’s feelings on her face? We’ll cover how Paul Ekman’s FACS system works and why you shouldn’t always judge people’s feelings or intentions by their facial expressions.
Why do we make assumptions about people, especially strangers? What are the consequences of the assumptions we make? Can we retrain ourselves and our interactions with strangers? We’ll cover Malcolm Gladwell’s theory about why we make assumptions about people, from his book Talking to Strangers. As we’ll see, it’s not hard to correct this tendency.
The primary reason that most people can’t immediately detect a lie is that human beings default to assuming truth in others. Is it possible to learn how to detect a lie? We’ll cover the reasons it’s difficult to know how to detect a lie, and we’ll look at why you’ve evolved to assume the best in people.
Do you know how to tell when someone is lying? Do you think you’re good at it? What does science tell us about our ability to accurately tell when someone is lying? Science says we’re not very good at how to tell when someone is lying. Learn when you’re better at it, and what red herrings throw you off course.
What are the effects of stress on memory? Are the effects severe? Long term? Stress affecting memory is a huge problem in everyday life, and a particular problem for people who need to obtain crucial information under stressful circumstances, such as interrogators. We’ll look at the effects of stress on memory in the military to understand how stress might also affect us in less acutely stressful environments.
What is Truth-Default Theory? Why do we tend to assume the best in people, and is this evolutionarily beneficial? Truth-Default Theory is the theory that when a stranger is lying, human beings default to assuming truth in others. We want to believe that what others tell us is true, and we’ll default to truth unless, or until, our doubts can’t be explained or rationalized. We’ll cover the primary reason that most people cannot immediately identify a lie, and how the Truth-Default Theory may actually be an evolutionary advantage.
What is coupling theory? How do some of our most unconscious behaviors impact others? Coupling theory is the idea that some behaviors are “coupled”–a behavior is linked to a specific context. A person’s behavior is affected by his personal history and environment. We’ll cover the coupling theory as it relates to suicide rates and also discuss how context impacts behavior more generally.
What are enhanced interrogation techniques? On what kinds of subjects are they used? Are they effective? Enhanced interrogation techniques are techniques including walling, sleep deprivation, and waterboarding. They’re often used in the fight against terrorism. Learn why enhanced interrogation techniques may be counterproductive, leading to misleading or false confessions.