Humans are afraid of hypocrisy. We want to be consistent with our actions and beliefs.
With every tiny action, we’re telling ourselves a tale of who we are as a person. But consumer psychology experts know this and trick you into spending money.
Marketing psychology calls it the “Foot in the door” technique.
It means if you say yes to a micro-commitment—you’re more likely to respond positively to a more significant commitment.
The foot in the door technique is at the heart of content marketing.
It is the reason why brands are creating high-quality, free content to get you to sign up risk-free.
Here’s how it happens for an online visitor:
1. You come across a website or a social media platform.
2. You get enticed towards a particular freebie or a resource available to download for free.
3. You are okay with this small commitment of exchanging your email ID for a valuable resource.
4. Now, you’ve gone through the resource, and it has proved to be helpful and high quality, so you have a positive brand perception.
5. Now you start getting emails about trying the platform for another micro-commitment of just $1/month as a promotional first-month offer.
6. The only difference? The level of micro-commitment is raised from a free offer to something that makes you reach your wallet. No matter how small the amount is.
7. You try the platform out for a month and get hooked to it, only to realize your first month is about to get over.
8. Now, before the next month starts, you’d have to decide between either leaving your comfort zone of a good product and great price or giving in to a good product with the usual price.
Reminder: None of this is bad. Especially if the product is good and you like it. But you see how a little commitment can make you go a long way?
That one small (& free) commitment led to:
1. Spending a dollar
2. Trying a new platform
3. Building a habit
4. Paying full price.
5. Becoming a lifetime fan
TL;DR Here’s how FITD works:
1. It starts with a small commitment first.
2. It offers risk-free, small steps to get you in on the commitment step-by-step.
3. It asks for a bigger commitment when you are consistent with your behavior and deeply invested.