Balance Sheet close

This technique involves laying out pros and cons of buying a product in a clear and simple manner. This technique helps build rapport, as well as assists the prospective customer in his or her decision process.

Daily Cost Close

This technique involves breaking down the cost of a product, in order to focus on the smaller amounts it would cost per day, per month, etc. rather on the total amount.

Summary Close

Like the title suggests, this technique involves providing a clear summary of good reasons for the prospective to buy the product in question.

Similarity Close

The similarity close involves describing situations where someone similar, or in a similar situation, went ahead and bought the product in question.

Thought Stopping

Though stopping is a simple technique designed to help a person break out of unwanted emotions, or unwanted reactions to certain situations, and gain control. When experiencing an unwanted reaction, one can take control of it by saying “stop!”, and then initiating a more useful response. By practicing this technique repeatedly beforehand and implementing the desired response each time, it will eventually become easy to control your reactions when the given situation arises again.

Aversive Conditioning

Aversive Conditioning involves pairing an unpleasant stimulus with an unwanted behaviour (such as nail-biting, smoking) in order to create an aversion to it.

Verbal-Breathing Synchronization

Verbal-breathing synchronization is a hypnosis technique, where you pace your speech to when the person you are speaking to either inhales or exhales. This creates a steady, rhythmic pace, which is in tune with the subject’s current state. This will aid in establishing rapport, and in making it easier to bring the subject into a state of trance. It does not matter whether you choose to speak on inhalation or exhalation, the effect will be the same.

Validity Testing

Validity testing is a technique where the validity of a patient’s beliefs is tested by questioning whether or not the beliefs are supported by objective evidence.

Ultimatum Close

This technique involves making the customer think there may be missed opportunities by delaying or not making a purchase. This is done by stating that the price is likely to go up, or that the product is likely to sell out quickly.

Truthfulness by Elaboration

This is a technique than can make being honest a little easier. By elaborating on a “polite” answer, a more truthful answer can be given without being negative:

“Do you like the way I _____?”
“Yes, its ok, but it would be even better if you____”

Trial Close

This technique involves testing the customer to see how near he is to a purchase, by saying things like “How does that sound?”, or “Can you see yourself having one of these?”

Treat Close

This technique can be utilized if the customer is unable to give themselves a reason to buy the product, the seller can suggest that it can be a way of treating themselves, as a present, etc.

Selective-deafness Close

This technique involves responding only to what you want to hear, and changing the subject when a customer expresses objections, focusing instead on attributes of the product that make it beneficial to them.

Reversal Close

This technique involves being the opposite of pushy. Backing off and telling the customer that the product might not be what he or she is looking for, may create a feeling of trust, as well as appeal to the fact that people can be attracted to what they cannot have.

Commitment and Consistency

Doing a favour for another can elicit consistency, which is a need for behaviours, statements or beliefs to be consistent with prior acts or statements. So in complying to the request of a favour, the person may conclude that they like the person to whom they did the favour. It can invoke a sense of commitment to reciprocate.

Referral Discount Close

This technique involves offering to give the prospect a discount if he or she is willing to give the names and numbers of a specific number of referrals. This can be done even if the discount could have been given without referrals.

Radical Honesty

Radical honesty is a therapeutic approach whereby the patient is strongly encouraged to attempt to reach an ultimate level of honesty, in steps, in order to simplify relationships with others and life in general.

Levels of telling the truth:

1. Revealing the Facts: Clearing up lies from the past and the false presentation of self being maintained through withholding the truth.

2. Honesty about current thoughts and feelings.

3. Admitting that who you are is not who you have been pretending to be.


Blanton, Brad (2005) Radical Honesty: How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth, SparrowHawk Publications

Puppy Close

This technique involves letting the customer try the product for a short period of time, giving the customer an opportunity to become attached to it. This often ends in a purchase.

Positive Unconditional Regard

Positive unconditional regard refers to showing a genuine and total acceptance for a client in a therapist-client relationship. Such an approach allows the client to feel safe and to be able to speak freely. This concept can also be applied to more everyday settings.

IQ Close

This closing technique involves suggesting to the prospective customer that people who buy the product in question are more intelligent and well informed than other people.


Hakalau is a technique for shifting ones attention from a small focused area to the visual scope in general. This is achieved by sharply focusing all attention on one point in the environment, and gradually letting your focus spread out into the peripheral areas of vision, while still keeping the eyes fixed on the original point.

The technique creates a form of trance, and can be useful when performing any task of a physical nature where total focus is needed (dancing, sports, hunting, driving etc.).

Extinction Procedures or Exposure Treatment

Extinction is the conditioning phenomenon in which a previously learned response to a cue is reduced when the cue is presented in the absence of the previously paired stimulus.

There are several procedures for creating extinction:

Systematic desensitization.
This is a procedure for treating phobias in which the patient is gradually exposed to the phobic object.

Another phobia technique, here the conditioned stimulus is presented alone, repeatedly, and intensely.

Empty Chair Technique

The empty chair technique is a Gestalt Therapy technique where the client engages in a role-played conversation with an imagined person. The patient sits facing an empty chair, and imagines that a family member or some other specific person is sitting there. The patient will talk to the person, either to verbalize things they for some reason would rather not say in real life, or to rehearse future encounters with that person. A real person (or even the patient himself) can also play the role of the individual in the chair.

Emotion Close

This closing technique involves finding out what it is about the product that triggers the prospect’s emotional needs, and getting him or her to act on the basis of these.

Discrimination Training

Discrimination training is a method of training the ability to discriminate between different degrees of tension in a given muscle group. This is done by sessions of tension and relaxation of muscle groups, systematically tensing each group at 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%. This gives the subject the ability to recognize when they are starting to feel tense, and the ability to control the tension.

Conditional Close

If the prospect has a specific objection, he or she can be persuaded into making a purchase by offering a solution which will resolve the objection, or by finding a middle ground.

Companion Close

The companion close involves appealing to the fact that someone accompanying the customer (or someone close to them) might also appreciate the product in question.

Behavior Modification


Behavior modification is a general term referring to altering an individual’s behaviors and reactions to stimuli through positive and negative reinforcement of desired behavior and/or the reduction of undesirable behavior through its “extinction” or punishment.

Cognitive Rehearsal

Cognitive rehearsal is a technique used in therapy where the therapist and patient work together to find ways in which a certain problem can be handled. By “rehearsing” ways of dealing with a particular situation, the patient is then better equipped for when such situations should arise.

Assumptive Close


This technique involves assuming that the prospect has already agreed to the sale, with such statements as “Will that be with cash or credit card?”. The technique is used before the customer has made a decision, in order to push him or her over the line.

Adjournment Close

The adjournment close is a technique that can be useful in cases where the prospect is definitely not ready to make a purchase, but might be at some point. Here, the seller can make an appointment for some later date which is more convenient for the prospect.

1-2-3 Close

The 1-2-3-close is a selling technique where the salesperson highlights three things about a product that are it’s main benefits, giving a simple summary of reasons to buy it.

Yes Set

The yes set is a series of statements or questions designed so that the only reactions or answers will be positive. A succession of these will condition the receiver to react positively to you, making it more likely that they will respond positively to requests, as well as creating general rapport.


Universals are simple questions or statements where the response can only be positive, and can be added to a conversation in order to create an air of agreement.

Here-there Technique

The here-there technique is a hypnosis technique for dissociating from a state of pain, anxiety of discomfort.

The subject observes out loud 3 to 5 things here (in his field of vision).

The subject is instructed to close his eyes and imagine a previous sensory experience where he felt comfort and security, and was free of anxiety or pain. He is then asked to notice 3 to 5 things that he sees there.

The subject then repeats the same here and there procedure with auditory observations, and with kinesthetic sensations.

Swish Pattern

The swish pattern is a technique for changing a habit or compulsion, where the undesired behaviour is “swished out” by a new, more desirable alternative.

1. Identify unwanted behaviour (such as nail-biting, smoking etc.).
2. Identify cue image: what you see in that situation prior to the behaviour. There should be at least some unpleasantness associated with this picture.
3. Create outcome picture: an image of how you would see yourself differently if you had already accomplished the desired change.
4. ‘Swish’ these two pictures. Visualize the cue image. Then gradually swish it out with the new image, several times.
5. Test. Picture the first image. If the swish has been effective, this will be difficult.

Squeezing the Meaning

Squeezing the meaning involves attaching meaning to words by using expressive tonality, in ways that emphasize their meaning. An example is saying “happy”, with a happy, chirpy tonality. Small variations in how a word is expressed can greatly change how the receiver perceives the meaning.


This technique involves pointing towards yourself in conversation as a way of (covertly) pairing yourself with desirable traits.


Re-imprinting is a technique for changing unwanted imprints (strongly held unconscious beliefs), where the subject (either you or someone else) thinks back in time, to the first memory they have of having the belief. The subject then questions the belief, how it came about, what its purpose may have been, thus attempting to understand it it from different perspectives. By creating a new understanding of the belief, it can be changed.

Punctuation Ambiguity

This kind of ambiguity is created by putting two sentences together that end and begin with the same word.

Example: “You always seem to be relaxed [pause] with me [pause] I’m the type of person who can feel at ease anywhere”.


Presuppositions are sentences which (when applied to persuasion) presuppose anything that we do not want the receiver to question. A simple example is: “Do you need more information about the product before you choose it?”.

Pattern Interrupt

A pattern interrupt is anything that breaks the pattern and flow of someone’s behaviour. A pattern interrupt creates a state of suggestibility in the subject, as their mind attempts to make sense of the change.

Pacing and Leading

This technique starts with making statements that are absolutely and verifiably true, creating agreement in the subject (pacing). After pacing, the subject can then more easily be lead in the direction that you wish, due to being primed to agreeing with you.

Negative Commands

Negative commands are commands that utilize our tendency to visualize things or actions, even if presented as a negative. Telling the receiver not to do something, may cause them to do exactly what you instructed them not to do, due to them being forced to envision the act of doing so.


“Do not think of a pink elephant!”.

“Do not study the entire Website, you will end up knowing too much”.

Mirroring and Matching

This technique involves copying another person’s gestures, movements, body language, muscle tensions, expressions, tone of voice, eye movements, blinking, breathing, speech tempo, accent, attitude, level of energy, or other behaviours in order to establish rapport.

More specifically, mirroring is creating a mirror image of someone (for example, when facing the person, moving your right arm when the other person moves their left arm), whilst matching is doing the same as the other person, for example moving your right arm when they move their right arm.

Handshake Induction

The handshake induction is a form of pattern interrupt, where the ingrained automatic pattern of shaking hands is interrupted. The hypnotist’s hand lingers and he alternately releases and applies pressure with his fingers to different parts of the subject’s hand.

Eye-Fixation Induction

This hypnosis technique is carried out as follows:

Take any bright object between the thumb and fore and middle fingers of the left hand; hold it from about eight to fifteen inches from the eyes, at such position above the forehead as may be necessary to produce the greatest possible strain upon the eyes and eyelids, and enable the patient to maintain a steady fixed stare at the object.

The patient must be made to understand that he is to keep the eyes steadily fixed on the object, and the mind riveted on the idea of that one object. It will be observed, that owing to the consensual adjustment of the eyes, the pupils will be at first contracted: they will shortly begin to dilate, and after they have done so to a considerable extent, and have assumed a wavy motion, if the fore and middle fingers of the right hand, extended and a little separated, are carried from the object towards the eyes, most probably the eyelids will close involuntarily, with a vibratory motion. If this is not the case, or the patient allows the eyeballs to move, desire him to begin anew, giving him to understand that he is to allow the eyelids to close when the fingers are again carried towards the eyes, but that the eyeballs must be kept fixed, in the same position, and the mind riveted to the one idea of the object held above the eyes. It will generally be found, that the eyelids close with a vibratory motion, or become spasmodically closed. After ten or fifteen seconds have elapsed, by gently elevating the arms and legs, it will be found that the patient has a disposition to retain them in the situation in which they have been placed, if he is intensely affected.

If this is not the case, in a soft tone of voice desire him to retain the limbs in the extended position, and thus the pulse will speedily become greatly accelerated [i.e., doubled], and the limbs, in process of time, will become quite rigid and involuntarily fixed [i.e., cataleptic]. It will also be found, that all the organs of special sense, excepting sight, including heat and cold, and muscular motion, or resistance, and certain mental faculties, are at first prodigiously exalted, such as happens with regard to the primary effects of opium, wine, and spirits. [The “primary” stage, of sensory excitation.] After a certain point, however, this exaltation of function is followed by a state of depression, far greater than the torpor of natural sleep.


Braid, J. (1843) Neurypnology


This hypnosis technique is carried out as follows:

After assuming a relaxing position:

– Syncronize the opening and closing of your eyes with your breathing, leave your eyes open when inhaling, and allow them to close when exhaling. Find a pleasing, relaxing rhythm.

– When a steady rhythm has been achieved, inhale a colour. It can be any colour at all, as long as it represents the kind of peacefulness and comfort you are looking for.

– Then add a new colour to the process, and let it colour the breath that you are exhaling. Let the colour represent something that you want less of, and breathe it out.


Copying back exact words, sentence structures and tonality of a person, in order to create rapport.

Confusion Induction

The confusion induction involves creating confusion in a subject by telling a complicated story or making a set of complicated statements. This creates a susceptibility to suggestion, as the mind of the subject is attempting to create a meaningful understanding of what is being said. The confusion induction is followed by a command.

Betty Erickson Method

The Betty Erikson Method is a self hypnosis technique, that can be used to put yourself into a state of deep focus and suggestibility. It can be used to feed your own suggestions into your unconscious mind, giving you the ability to effectively change unwanted thoughts or behaviour. The technique is carried out as follows:

Find a quiet place and make yourself comfortable.

Determine the length of time that you intend to spend on the hypnosis session and make a statement to yourself about it.

Then make a statement to yourself about the goal of the self hypnosis session.

Make a final statement to yourself about the state that you want to be in when you have completed the session.

Then turn your attention to whatever is in front of you, and focus on:

– Three things you see, three things you hear, and three things you feel.

– Two things you see, two things you hear, and two things you feel.

– One thing you see, one thing you hear, and one thing you feel.

Close your eyes, and keeping them closed, imagine:

– One thing you see, one thing you hear, and one thing you feel.

– Two things you see, two things you hear, and two things you feel.

– Three things you see, three things you hear, and three things you feel.

The point of seeing and imagining these things is to fully focus the conscious mind, in order to allow the unconscious mind to process and work with the goal which you set for yourself.



Anchoring is a technique that involves deliberately pairing an internal state to an external touch, sound or something the subject can see. Once this association has been set, you can then trigger the internal experience at will, by repeating the stimulus.

Analog Marking

Analog marking is a technique where one gives special identical emphasis to the words of an embedded command within a sentence, in order for the the unconscious mind of the receiver to interpret them as being related to each other. The emphasis can be a certain tone of voice, for instance.

Alternating Conversational Modality

The technique of alternating conversational modality involves speaking to the subject in their dominant sensory modality (which is found by listening to which words they use to describe their own experience), followed by speaking in the words of another sensory modality. This can create a form of pattern-interrupt.

54321 induction

The 54321 induction technique is executed as follows.

Instruct the subject to:

-Assume a comfortable position.

-State (out loud) 5 things he or she sees.
-State 5 sounds he or she hears.
-State 5 sensations that he or see physically feels

-Start again and state 4 things, sounds and sensations, then 3, then 2, then 1.

Then finally, give the subject commands or suggestions.

Creating a Vacuum

This technique involves pausing after receiving a short answer to an open question, so as to deliberately create an awkward vacuum of silence. This will often prompt the person asked to give a more elaborate answer.

Similar Scenario

In order to find out if someone is doing something they do not want you to know about, create a similar scenario and ask them what they think, then observe the reaction.

If the person reacts in a natural, interested manner, then they may not be doing what it is you suspect them of. They may even be flattered that you asked their opinion.

If they act more evasive, then they may be hiding something.


If someone is lying or attempting to hide what it is they actually feel, they may overcompensate. If a reaction is too quick, too clear or too “nice”, or the person seems to be trying hard to create a perfect image, the person may be overcompensating for something.

Eye-accessing Cues

Eye-accessing cues are a reading technique based on the assumption that people have a tendency to move their eyes in a certain direction when thinking in a certain way. NLP suggests that eye accessing cues are habitual for each individual, and may form significant clues as to how a person is processing a piece of information.

A common layout of eye accessing cues:

– Upwards (left/right) — Visual (V) — “I can imagine the big picture”.
– Level (left/right) — Auditory (A) — “Let’s tone down the discussion”
– Down-right — Kinesthetic (K) — “to grasp a concept” or “to gather you’ve understood.”
– Down-left Auditory internal dialogue (Aid) — talking to oneself inside.

Vanishing Negative

The vanishing negative is a subtly ambiguous statement, which can be turned into a “hit” whether or not the statement was correct.


Reader: “You don’t work with children do you..?”
Subject: “Yes.”
Reader: “I sensed that you do.”


Reader: “You don’t work with children do you..?”
Subject: “No, I don’t.”
Reader: “No, I didn’t think you did.”


The shotgunning technique involes putting a general/open statement “out there” in order to get a hit. Examples:

“I’m getting a name, something with the letter J.. Jane.. Janet.. Joan…

Rainbow Ruse

The rainbow ruse is a statement which credits a person with both a personality trait and its opposite, in order to cover the entire range (“rainbow”) of possibilities.

Probative Comments (“Try on” Statements)

Statements designed to elicit responses from the subject, which can then be used to refine the accuracy of subsequent statements made to the subject.


“You have some unfinished business in your personal life, something you need to put behind you.”

“There seem to be some financial issues that are creating tensions in other areas of your life.”


Cold Reading Tradecraft

Peter Pan Predictions

Peter Pan predictions are predictions of the future which are positive, and which will fulfill the subjects needs and wishes. Basically telling the subject what he or she wants to hear.

One-way Verifiable Predictions

One-way verifiable predictions are predictions that can only be verified if they come true.

“An acquaintance will consider telling you something that will have an effect on your relationship with your father ”

Fuzzy Facts

The fuzzy facts technique involves making a statement that seems factual, but which is of an open enough nature that it can be refined based on the subject’s response, so as to become more accurate.

Example: “…and I’m getting an indication of a problem around the chest or abdomen area, it could be sort of here (gestures vaguely towards heart and lungs).”

Fine Flattery

Fine flattery involves crediting the subject with positive personality traits, but in a subtle indirect way, so as not to show that you are obviously trying to flatter them.

Diverted Question

This technique involves weaving a question into the conversation, then deducing a fact about the person, and adding the new fact into the reading. In this way the reader is seemingly coming up with the information “from out of nowhere”.

Barnum Statement


A Barnum statement is a statement describing personality traits, which is general and vague enough that it could apply to anyone, while seeming to be specific to an individual. A well written Barnum statement will seem to the receiver to be an accurate description of them.