How to Motivate People to do Just About Anything: The Law of Reciprocity

The key to motivationg people so you can persuade them to do almost anything!
Seth Kniep
Apr 16, 2018
Today, I want to tell you a story. One day, I went to IHOP with my daughters. When the waiter asked us what we wanted, I said, “I’d like some eggs. What are your options?” He started listing (sunny-side up, over-easy, poached, etc.…) and I asked him if he could explain each type of egg. He explained every type, even explaining how to poach an egg. Then, I said,

“This is actually a test, so I appreciate your explanations. I’m a higher-up in the company and I’m here to test you guys. You’re the waiter we’re going to be watching and evaluating.”

The guy stopped, smiled, and said, “Okay, no problem.” He didn’t stop smiling the rest of the time we were there – and that was the best IHOP service I’ve ever had in my life. 

Why did I do this? I wanted to prove something useful to my daughter, a life tip about treating people well. It’s simple, but invaluable: if you care, you’ll receive care in return.

I showed that waiter I “cared,” in the sense that I was there to evaluate him, and he showed care in return. He knew that I was involved with and invested in his performance, and he wanted to do a better job.

The same is true of customer service on Amazon.

Let me tell you another story.

I ordered a boom for my Yeti microphone, and the seller immediately sent me a message. The seller told me there had been a threading problem on some Yeti microphones, and they weren’t 100% consistent. The seller wanted to let me know that they had received some poor reviews due to the threading issue (which was no fault of the seller’s) but if we had an issue, we could return the boom and receive a full refund.

I was already impressed by this first message. Then, the day my product arrived, the seller sent another message. There was also an insert in the package itself, and they included a discount coupon I could use the next time I bought something from their store.

This seller took a problem that could have negatively impacted their store and turned it into an opportunity to show they cared. They interacted with the customer not once, but three times, showing their care and concern. As a result, I’m going to show that same care with a five-star review.

The Law of Reciprocity

You’ve heard the saying: do unto others as you would have them do unto you. When you care for others, they’ll care in return. That’s reciprocity. If you do something nice for someone and treat them with care, they’re going to reciprocate with that same care and kindness.

When you’re an Amazon seller, you’re selling to people just like you, so you need to treat them like people, not like words on a computer screen. Talk to your customers the same way you would talk to a neighbor or a friend. Show your customers you care, and they’ll reciprocate. You’ll receive care and kindness in return.

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Seth Kniep

Married a pearl. Fathered 4 miracles. Fired his boss. Turned a single dime into $104,857. Today, a self-made millionaire, Seth and his team of 8 badass coaches teach entrepreneurs how to build passive income on Amazon.

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