Manipulative Questions Get Short-Term Results!

by Michael Oliver

Manipulative questions can be very powerful at externally motivating others into action. However, their power is mostly short-term, because they have an inherent weakness: they don't produce long-term results for the majority of distributors and customers. The long-term outcome of asking this type of question to get what you want people to do is usually one of regret.

That's the Achilles’ heel of the conventional selling process of using external motivation. It leads to resentment and is one of the major reasons why rejection, objections and buyer’s remorse come up — not to mention the high attrition rate. It lends credence to the saying. “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.”

Here's how this happens. If you use manipulative questions, whose answers are you likely to receive, those of the person you’re talking with, or your own? Your own, mostly! And while you can make people temporarily motivated to do something, what usually happens after a short while? They stop being motivated. They stop doing what they agreed to do.

Your Reasons or Theirs?

This psychological behavior of regret is called buyer’s remorse. You see evidence of this (in either your downline or your customers) when they don't stay the course or don't stay on the product, and you're constantly having to call them to motivate them. Why does this happen? Because they came on board for the wrong reasons—your reasons, not theirs!

Any form of manipulation, whether you're doing it for you or doing it “for them,” is manipulation nevertheless. People sense this and, if they do enter into an agreement, do so reluctantly.

Companies and advertising agencies put an amazing amount of energy and money towards keeping buyer’s remorse at bay after the sale. For example, take those dazzling advertisements in magazines that advertise expensive cars. They are geared just as much to reassure the purchaser who has already bought the car as they are to attract new buyers. Have you ever noticed being drawn to certain ads after you've made an expensive purchase to reassure yourself that you made the right decision?

Manipulative questions can conflict with the souls of others. People know they are being sucked in, even though they allow it to happen. You might have had manipulative questions used on you. If you have, how did it make you feel? Probably not so good, and you probably don't feel inclined to do this to others!

Manipulative questions will get the answers you want, but will they get the answers you need?

MICHAEL OLIVER is a speaker, trainer and author of How to Sell Network Marketing Without Fear, Anxiety or Losing Your Friends!

Do you like what you've read?

Subscribe to Networking Times and receive a whole professional journal packed with similar insightful and motivational articles. A subscription to Networking Times includes the following benefits:

  • a perfect-bound issue of Networking Times in the mail
  • a FREE E-subscription: access to the latest online issue
  • online access to the entire library of back issues since 2002


Social Media