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Review: Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions by Guy Kawasaki

Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and ActionsEnchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions by Guy Kawasaki
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Kawasaki shows how to apply the psychology of persuasion, influence, and marketing to business. In addition to his own experience and anecdotes, he borrows heavily from books, studies, and experts. I liked his guidelines for becoming more likable and trustworthy, which are invaluable in both personal and business life.

According to Kawasaki, enchantment is the process of delighting people with a product, service, organization, or idea to achieve voluntary and long-lasting support that’s mutually beneficial. This requires changing people’s hearts, minds, and actions by getting them to internalize your values. When you enchant people, your goal is not to make money from them or get them to do what you want, but to fill them with great delight. You’re going for long-lasting change, not a onetime sale or transaction.

Never one to provide theory without application, Kawasaki gives specific tips for effectively using presentations, email, blogs, and social media to enchant. I noted several points that I’ll use to make OptimWise, my web design business, more enchanting.

I agreed with Kawasaki for most of the book, but disagreed about part of the chapter “How to Enchant Your Boss.” In it, Kawasaki says, “drop everything and do what your boss asks.” I found this advice odd, because he usually advocates being authentic, genuine, and true to yourself, not sinking to political maneuvering.

Forms of reciprocity
Do something with the explicit expectation of receiving something in return. Not enchanting.
Do something as an investment in the future; “paying it forward”. May be enchanting.
Do something for intrinsic reasons. Most likely to be enchanting.

When someone thanks you, don’t say "you’re welcome”, but “I know you’d do the same for me". By this you're telling them that you think they're classy, and that they owe you a favor.

How to write a positioning statement
Short. 10 words max.
Clear. Answer the question, “What do you do?” Focus on your function, not your title.
Different. Use words most people don’t use. Use verbs to explain what you do, not adjectives.

Illustrate the salient point
Take facts and use them to communicate the effect of a decision. Don’t give data, give information to help people make good, fast decisions. For example, miles per gallon versus cost of fuel per year, or gigabytes of storage versus number of songs a device holds.

How to overcome resistance
Provide social proof. Show people that others are embracing your cause.
Create the perception of ubiquity. Make people think everyone is using your product or service.
Create the perception of scarcity (if social proof and ubiquity aren’t feasible). Make people think your product or service is scarce so they think it’s more valuable.

Principles of push technology (presentations, email, Twitter, etc.)
Respond quickly, within 24 hours whenever possible.
Treat everyone equally; don’t focus only on important people.
Provide value.
Give credit.
Limit self-promotion.

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I'm seriously considering retiring this blog. When I started it in 2008, it was a place for me to share thoughts and links on a variety of topics. For at least the last year, however, it's just been a place where I re-post book reviews from Goodreads.

You can see all my book reviews on my Goodreads profile, and subscribe to my Goodreads RSS feed to be notified of new reviews. I also intend to keep blogging about WordPress, web design, and web-related topics on my OptimWise blog, which also has an RSS feed.

Would you miss this blog if I discontinued it? Please leave a comment.