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January 6, 2017, 12:35 PM

I have to say, I have had trouble establishing a foothold on this persuasion thing until recently. It started when I reread Joe Vitale’s “Buying Trances”. I never really get anything useful from reading Joe’s stuff, but he referenced a book by Roy Garn called “The Magic Power of Emotional Appeal” that I wanted to read. So I found a copy and bought it. In it, Roy describes the Fatal Four Emotional Appeals: Recognition, Money, Romance and Self-Preservation.

Joe also has the free version of Blair Warren’s “One Sentence Persuasion Course” in the back of his book. The one sentence being:

“People will do anything for those who encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions and help them throw rocks at their enemies.”

Both of these books by themselves didn’t offer me much help. But, one day the idea occurred to me to combine the principles of both books and things started to click.

A little more detail on the Roy Garn book will help explain what I’m trying to get across here. Garn calls people “cows” who are influenced by one of the Fatal Four Emotions. So, a Recognition Cow is one that is motivated by recognition. He also believes that people are influenced more strongly by two of the Fatal Four Emotions. Here is a breakdown of the Fatal Four Emotions as I see them:

Recognition: This person desires to achieve. Sometimes it doesn’t matter what the achievement as long as they get recognition. It could be the have the best dog, have the highest degree, graduated with honors, work for the best company (even though they are at the bottom rung of the ladder), etc. The point is they need to be recognized. You can tell who these people are because their favorite words are I, me, my, we, our. By the way, I am a recognition cow.

Money: This one has two sides, making money and saving money. You can get the attention of a making money cow by showing him a way to make money. In the same way, you can sway a saving money cow by showing them how to save money. In this regard, I go both ways. In effect I am a bi-cow. I like to make money and save money, bigly :D .

Romance: Aside from the obvious appeal for sex and love, the romance cow has two different aspects as well. They are: the future promise and the desire for new experience. These people can be enticed by showing them what the future holds or giving them ideas for a new experience.

Self-Preservation: These people are concerned about safety and health. They can be engaged by showing them potential dangers and how to fix them. They are also concerned about most common health issues and some that aren’t so common.

Roy Garn refers to these Fatal Four Emotional Appeals as PREOCCUPATION BREAKERS.

I have tried to use and create AVATARS and the IDEAL CUSTOMER profiles to get a picture of my audience when writing sales pieces and it did me no good. I couldn’t get on board because it was all just guesswork. You know the deal, “Mary is a 33 year old divorced mother of two in a secretarial job she hates. She lives in a middle class neighborhood and drives a Buick.” I would create the avatar and never think about it again.

With the Fatal Four Emotions I am able to identify which emotional cow will be most likely to buy a particular product (eg: Self-Preservation cow - Security Alarm, Romance cow - Caribbean Cruise, etc). Then, I can apply the one sentence persuasion to the copy.

Mind you, I am still digesting these concepts, but I am going to attempt to illustrate how the Fatal Four Emotional Appeal works with the One Sentence Persuasion using a cars as the product.

Recognition Cow - High-End Luxury vehicles: There are so many luxury car commercials that say nothing about the car. Cadillac’s motto is “Dare Greatly” - Only those who dare, drive the world forward (encouraging their dreams of being in an exclusive club).

Money Cow - Low cost or high efficiency vehicles: Money cows want the most bang for the buck. Some want the most efficient cars, best gas mileage, best longevity others just want the lowest cost period others want both. Encourage their dreams by emphasizing how far they can go on a tank of gas, that these cars last for x years and STILL hold their value. Justify their failures by letting them know that the last car they bought was a lemon coming off the line. Allay their fears by telling them they won’t find a better deal anywhere and if they do you’ll give them the difference in cash. Confirm their suspicions by telling them the dealer they bought their last car from has a history of shady deals.

Romance Cow - Convertible or SUV: Romance cows want adventure. Encourage their dreams by showing them how the vehicle can get that adventure. I sold a convertible on Craigslist in 6 hours for $800 above blue book price by showing the experiences they would have and no details about gas mileage or engine size. Justify their failures by showing them how NOT having the vehicle is keeping them from the life they desire.

Self-Preservation Cow - The safest, most dependable car possible: Self preservation cows don’t want to die in a car crash. Most people don’t, but these folks will pay for the best protection. They may have kids or they may have had a car crash and got injured. Their goal is a car that won’t ever leave them and their family stranded or unprotected. Allay their fears with consumer reports and emphasize all the safety features available. Confirm their suspicions by showing the low safety rating of the most popular cars.

That is just a brief example. As I said, I am still digesting the material and at this point it only serves as a PERSUASION PRIMER.

To be sure there is more to persuasion than this, I just think it is a good place to START. At least it is for me.


Great Gregg. Garn's book was a foundational piece and where I first heard the term Preoccupations in an applied sense, some 35 years ago. Since then, I did what you are doing, looking for applicable situations and expanding the concept.

IF you will revisit the SQ1 and the POP, you'll see a lot of Garn's influence.

I expanded the PREOCCUPATIONS via the Maslow Pyramid and also used both Astrology (12 types) plus a lot of Personality types. I'm happy to see someone has discovered this work, it offers up a good foundation of being AWARE of these "kinds" of preoccupations.

Just be careful you don't lump any given avatar into a group, even though they might match perfectly, I'm a classical Aquarius, but resist being type cast when it comes to someone trying to influence overtly.

Blair's one sentence needs a lot of research, I think the Forbidden Keys to Persuasion gives much better insight into how to APPLY the Fatal Four at a deeper subconscious level, another work which will prove helpful in your studies is

PSYCHOFEEDBACK by PAUL THOMAS who picks up where Max Maltz leaves off and gives a look at the RAS and how it functions.

I'd say you are very close to having a huge BREAKTHROUGH in your studies and a light bulb moment could create great fortune for you. Keep it up.


PS. There are several secret, little read, mostly unknown books which came out in the 50s and early 60s, much of it based on discoveries made about the NAZI research into the brain and mental function.

Thanks Gregg for sharing, I love Garn's book.

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