The Secret to Tricking People Into Believing Lies? Lie, Obviously.

Daniel Levitin

“When it comes to snowing people, one effective technique is to get a whole bunch of verifiable facts right and then add one or two that are untrue.” – Daniel Levitin, Born Dec. 27, 1957.

This is essentially what all sales pitches are. A mix of fact and lies.

If it bothers you to call them lies, think of them as imaginary facts.

Misleading information.

Words we put there specifically to create an impression of a thing or event that doesn’t yet exist.

But this is the process. You take facts. Data. Numbers. Proof. Demonstrations. Verifiable and TRUE.

Then you take your fictions. Manufactured scarcity and urgency. Emotional appeals. Rigged comparisons. Exaggerated contrasts. Envisioned future outcomes. Promises. Guarantees.

You sandwich the fictional parts with the factual parts, and that gives the work of persuasion a structure.

A lattice. A ladder. A track. Something solid for the prospect to grab hold of, and ideally move along the path we’ve constructed, toward the imaginary vision we want them to adopt.

The vision of having their problem solved, their pains eliminated, their pleasures multiplied.

Which is a lie. An untruth. A POTENTIAL only, which we may hope and desire to deliver to the best of our ability. But which is, nonetheless a fantasy of ours. UNTIL we get the prospect to adopt that desire themselves.

We then help translate that desire into action, the action of purchasing.

They get their desired item. We get our money. Everyone is happy.

And PERHAPS the shared vision BECOMES true.

But it doesn’t begin that way. It begins as make believe. Pretend. A fairy tale.

But we don’t want it dismissed as such. And so we have our facts. Our research. Our measurements and numbers and statistics.

We know real world things that we can reference, that they can verify from their own knowledge and experience. We anchor our story in the real world. The one we share with them.

Once they are there, THEN we bring in the magic.

They play together. The facts and the fiction.

You need both to do the job.

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