April 9, 2014
Door in the face – starting with an extreme offer, then with a smaller offer
1. Consistency and reciprocity
After reciprocal concessions:
• Feel manipulated?
• Actually (e.g., Benton et al. 1972):
• Feel more responsible for agreement
• Feel more satisfied
• More likely to follow through
• More likely to agree to future favors
First to make move has upper hand
E.g.: Want your roommate to loan you $50 to go see Justin Bieber?
• First ask for $150!
• Which makes $50 seems smaller?
• Familiar heuristic?
o Anchoring and adjustment
If we anchor at extreme request…
• …moderate seems more appealing
2. Commitment and compliance
Offer low price on car (reason to buy)
Get decision (commitment) to buy
“Let me check w/ manager to finalize…”
“Can’t do it…regular price”
• Still buy!
• Made commitment to buy something
o Original reason (low price) is gone
o Self-generated reasons (commitment) remain
Also bait & switch…?
EX. Super good deal of 2 TVs on discount on Black Friday. Both sold out, so the
manager then recommends another TV with a great price. We are likely to buy
this because of the commitment we already made to buying the first one.
Cialdini et al. (1978) • Called for 7 a.m. psychology study
o Told up front 24% “yes”
o Didn’t tell: 56% “yes”
Then told, given chance to back out…what happened?
• No one did; 95% showed up
Feel pleased with a poor choice!
• Sound like anything?
o Very similar to cognitive dissonance-like process!
Attitudes come to match behavior
Opposite of door-in-the-face, but still works!
First: small request, target complies
Second: larger, real request
• More likely to agree
E.g.: rummage through house study (Freedman & Fraser, 1966)
• First: take phone survey?
o Household products
• 3 days later, second: 2-hour inventory of home?
o Looking through