Home > Social Influence > The influence of a Smile

The influence of a Smile

I wanted to share an idea I've been thinking about. The idea is this... can the act of smiling can have an impact on your ability to persuade others? The idea is still germinating so don't go too hard on me. ;)

Ok here it goes... when you smile at another person isn't there a natural tendency for the other person to reciprocate with a smile of his/her own?

By smiling back at you doesn't the other person's state of mind shift (subtly) to match his/her physiology? [Try to be mad when your smiling. It's hard.)

Aren't people in positive moods more receptive and open to persuasion than those those in negative moods? [Kids utilize this instinctively.]

So when all is said and done, can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?

Ok, that's all I've got for now. What do you think? - by Slick
Hmmm... interesting idea. - by Jolly Roger
So when all is said and done, can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?
I agree.

There are even studies that show if you smile when you're on the telephone, it makes a big difference in how you are perceived, and your success in the conversation. And, those studies have been proven through experience.

I think that relates to your comment about trying to be mad when you're smiling.
It just doesn't work. :)

Kathleen - by KSA-Mktg
So when all is said and done, can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?
Some great points you bring up, Slick.

"Ok here it goes... when you smile at another person isn't there a natural tendency for the other person to reciprocate with a smile of his/her own?"


Certainly true. I'm a smiler. I smile at everyone who I have eye contact with--I'm talking about strangers at the market, bank..etc--you know--that sort of thing. Originally it was an act of volition on my part--today its automatic and involuntary. But I remain conscious of my tendency because I get smiles back. Bottom line is it's all good.


"..can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?"

It can't hurt your "persuasion" efforts. But I don't believe it will have a direct effect on moving you forward in a selling conversation. To put it in overly simplistic terms, you won't gain a sale by smiling, but you could lose a sale by not smiling. - by Gary Boye
Smiling works!

When comes to state of mind and how to change it, is a very interesting topic and I have studied and practiced it in my own personal and business life.

In the theory of CANI - a variation of Gestalts theories - one must change his/her "state" before any change can be made. So, from a selling point of view, if you smile at your prospect - genuinely of course - and they reciprocate the smile, you in fact have started the process of change - hopefully from a prospect to an actual buyer. - by cs_obd
I like your example Slick. I too believe that a smile can help pave the way to a more favorable environment for persuasion. ;) - by MagicMan
Cool... and I thought I was going to get ripped for sure. :D

I have some other ideas I'm tossing around. I'll try to get one or two posted in the next few days. :) - by Slick
Cool... and I thought I was going to get ripped for sure. :D

:)
Just goes to show you...you just can't go wrong with a smile.:) - by RainMaker
well.. that's true... but be careful... some might misunderstood the way you smile! ;) - by Joanne Lim
I wanted to share an idea I've been thinking about. The idea is this... can the act of smiling can have an impact on your ability to persuade others? The idea is still germinating so don't go too hard on me. ;)

Ok here it goes... when you smile at another person isn't there a natural tendency for the other person to reciprocate with a smile of his/her own?

By smiling back at you doesn't the other person's state of mind shift (subtly) to match his/her physiology? [Try to be mad when your smiling. It's hard.)

Aren't people in positive moods more receptive and open to persuasion than those those in negative moods? [Kids utilize this instinctively.]

So when all is said and done, can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?

Ok, that's all I've got for now. What do you think?
You got that right Slick. :cool: - by SalesGuy
You got that right Slick. :cool:
Once again, we thank you for your support, and now Ed would like to say a few words. [Bartles and Jaymes]. :D - by Slick
I wanted to share an idea I've been thinking about. The idea is this... can the act of smiling can have an impact on your ability to persuade others? The idea is still germinating so don't go too hard on me. ;)

Ok here it goes... when you smile at another person isn't there a natural tendency for the other person to reciprocate with a smile of his/her own?

By smiling back at you doesn't the other person's state of mind shift (subtly) to match his/her physiology? [Try to be mad when your smiling. It's hard.)

Aren't people in positive moods more receptive and open to persuasion than those those in negative moods? [Kids utilize this instinctively.]

So when all is said and done, can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?

Ok, that's all I've got for now. What do you think?
How about a totally different spin on this one. This is my theory. :)

By the act of smiling, you have changed your own state of mind. By smiling you are shifting to a place where you are thinking more positively -- and in doing so, you are now approaching the conversation from a place of goodness--a wanting to help that person keep smiling. So you are more likely to listen better, respond authentically to what that person says to you, and generally have a better chance of building trust that can lead to agreement. So in a sense you have a better chance of persuading because you are coming from a better place to begin with.

(Of course a false smile has the opposite effect. You can't fake a smile any more than you can fake being interested in your prospect's needs.)

All of this stems from the Law of Attraction. I'm sure there are others here that can explain that better...I am a new student of this and just beginning to gain depth in my understanding.

Peace,
Terri Z :D - by Terri Zwierzynski
All of this stems from the Law of Attraction.
You are correct. ;)

So there are 2 great reasons to put on a happy face. :) - by Slick
You are correct. ;)

So there are 2 great reasons to put on a happy face. :)
Having a friendly and helpful attitude and one that is direct and to the point in a way that invites trust and respect is what matters most and produces that internal smile which recognizes trust and respect. Smiling naturally as one does is always part of who we are but artificial smiles can have a negative effect on a person's trust in someone.

Smiling as a tactic is what's in question - not smiling because something makes one smile. - by MitchM
Smiling as a tactic is what's in question - not smiling because something makes one smile.
Smiling is an aewsome "tactic". There is no question about it, it works. :cool: - by Slick
Smiling is an aewsome "tactic". There is no question about it, it works. :cool:
Slick, can you actually pin point a situation when the "smile" used as a tactic worked for you and how you used it? - by MitchM
Slick, can you actually pin point a situation when the "smile" used as a tactic worked for you and how you used it?
I purposely smile at everyone every day. :) - by Slick
I purposely smile at everyone every day. :)
I do too--more so out of habit. Never have thought of it as a tactic. Certainly something can be a way of being rather than a means to an end. - by Gary Boye
I do too--more so out of habit. Never have thought of it as a tactic. Certainly something can be a way of being rather than a means to an end.
I can imagine one of the old Live It's Saturday Night shows having a skit with one of the leads - you pick one or two - in a selling situation doing an exagerated version of the ultimate in tactical selling: mirroring every gesture and sound, smiling from eye ball to eye ball, offering coffee and cookies, flattering the little woman and cute little kids, all of that stuff the real dumb ones still do.

Then come the phone callers - this guy called my "buddy" and wanted me to send money for some fraternal police organization, talked about my family and kids and saftey, when I told him NO he came back with "why not?" and more family stuff when I said NO again he said, "So are you telling me you don't support your local cops?"

The guy was a trip and his tactics - to use a vernacular that's fitting - sucked big time! - by MitchM
[quote=MitchM] ...offering coffee and cookies...
QUOTE]
Mitch, I've got news for you... coffee and cookies will get me every time.

Seriously--I smile at everybody that looks my way. Even Hells Angels. - by Gary Boye
[quote=Gary Boye]
...offering coffee and cookies...
QUOTE]
Mitch, I've got news for you... coffee and cookies will get me every time.

Seriously--I smile at everybody that looks my way. Even Hells Angels.
Me too - the first place I hit at Toyota for an oil change last week was the coffee & cookie waiting room. Hells Angels? Better smile. You're funny, Gary - the kind of funny I like.

But you know the kind of parody I was talking about! The Three Stooges were masters at that - many others. - by MitchM
Smiling is an aewsome "tactic". There is no question about it, it works. :cool:
I agree and so do certain laws of persuasion. ;) - by SalesGuy
But you know the kind of parody I was talking about! The Three Stooges were masters at that - many others.
I liked all four of The Three Stooges. - by Gary Boye
I liked all four of The Three Stooges.
There were four, weren't they - like the Marx brothers, one who wasn't full time in their gig. - by MitchM
I agree and so do certain laws of persuasion. ;)
Thank Heavens for Unthinking Compliance. :D - by Slick
Thank Heavens for Unthinking Compliance. :D
Cialdini again. Good stuff. - by Gary Boye
So when all is said and done, can't the act of smiling have an impact on your ability to persuade others?
Excellent post. Yes, I believe it can. :) - by Milton
By the act of smiling, you have changed your own state of mind... :D
This is my favorite line on this thread. (...the cookies were a close 2nd) - by RainMaker
Very interesting point slick;) You just cant go wrong with a smile. - by Sanddollar
I found this quote today and it reminded me of this thread:

"Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not." -William James - by SalesGuy
I found this quote today and it reminded me of this thread:

"Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not." -William James
My smile is bright and like a child's - with delight and no agenda - it's a smile that attracts rather than produces puzzlement and it causes people to smile too because it's genuine - it's full of teeth and sunshine, moonshine too!

Natural smiles influence and some of the most influencing smiles I've seen have been some of the most subtle yet contained worlds of joy and mystery and hardly would have been recognized as a smile without the context of a conversation or relationship to give them shape.

The shape of a smile isn't always curved up nor is it always with teeth showing but it's always recognized by those who are attracted to them and respond to them when they're genuine. - by MitchM
I found this quote today and it reminded me of this thread:

"Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not." -William James
I love this quote, SalesGuy! It sums it up so well...Thanks! - by Terri Zwierzynski
I love this quote, SalesGuy! It sums it up so well...Thanks!
I like it too. Thanks. :) - by SalesGuy
When you tickle a child and they start laughing, everytime you stop, they will come back again and again until you get tired of the game. Smiling and laughing releases endorphins into the pleasure centers of the brain. It brings along with it a sense of well-being. People that laugh even heal more quickly from physical ailments than sourpusses. The selling process should be fun. A pleasant experience for all involved. Tha's not to say there won't be serious time, you are conducting business, but humor and real smiles or laughter is a tremendous aid in the selling process or in just interacting with others in general. It's harder to say no through giggles. - by klozerking
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