When to Use What Principles
Aristotle advocated applying a mix of influential techniques. Getting the mix right is an art. Without it, users will feel bored, manipulated, or pressured. Indeed, getting the mix wrong will make your results worse than if you use no techniques.13
The right mix of principles depends largely on the context. So, let’s map these principles to context—the phases of clout (Figure 4.31).
Figure 4.31: A guide to using rhetorical principles to achieve clout.
In the first two phases, influencing people’s attitude is critical, so rely on principles that establish your credibility, likability, and trustworthiness. As you enter the third phase, use principles that influence people’s actions.
A basic example is that Grasshopper emphasizes its credibility through showing awards, quotes, and a guarantee on its Features page. However, on the Sign Up page, Grasshopper does not include content about credibility. Instead, the page focuses on guiding people to subscribe (Figure 4.32).
Figure 4.32: Grasshopper uses different rhetorical principles at different times to support attitude and action.
For ideas to plan the right mix of principles for specific situations, see Chapter 6.