The ancient Greek influence trick

still works today

Last week, I promised to share the secret to attracting ideal customers.

But turns out, it’s 2 secrets:

1. How to be magnetic and capture attention.

2. How to establish trust and cultivate influence.

Even though it seems backwards, we need to talk about #2 before #1.

On the way there, I’m going to share the golden nugget Sam Parr handed me when we first met, the cunning tactic I learned 1 on 1 from a cult leader, and the time I showed up to a college class wearing exactly the same outfit as my instructor (cringe).

Last things first-

It was sophomore year, and I was adrift.

I got kicked out of the Engineering department at the end of freshman year (a story for another day), and had landed in the "Arts and Sciences" department.

With no real focus or goal, I just took classes that sounded fun and started after 9AM.

One semester, I took a bunch of philosophy and psychology.

I had no idea this semester would have a bigger impact on my life than any other.

You see, just like engineering is applied math and science, marketing is applied philosophy and psychology.

These fields of study seek to answer questions like "what drives human action, and why."

Very useful when you’ve got stuff to sell.

One of the earliest pioneers of human thought and behavior was the Greek philosopher, Aristotle.

(About 300 years before the Roman Empire, my dudes.)

One day, we were learning about one of his works called Rhetoric.

It’s all about how to persuade people.

Unfortunately for my rizz, the instructor and I were both wearing white Gap polos and khaki cargo shorts.

Even had on the same color shoes.

Probably New Balance. It was the late ‘90’s.

I was so embarrassed, I crouched low over my notebook and took especially good notes that day.

We learned about Aristotle’s "Three Pillars of Persuasion," which are the essential ingredients to winning an argument, changing someone’s beliefs, or influencing someone’s actions.

Turns out, they are the foundation of all marketing.

Aristotle named the three pillars Ethos, Pathos, and Logos.

Roughly translated:

  • Ethos is the reputation and influence of the speaker (or writer).

  • Pathos is the emotional state of the listener (reader).

  • Logos is the logic used by the speaker/ writer to support their claim (or call to action).

Here's why you should care-

Once you understand these three pillars and how to use them, you can influence and direct human thought and action.

But most people do it all wrong.

They try to use logos (facts and logic) to explain the features of their product or service, and why people should buy it.

The smarter ones know how to manipulate pathos (emotion), increasing the likelihood of a sale.

But the ethos trick I learned from a cult leader years later changed the game for me.

That’s what I want to share with you later this week.

See you then,


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