Confirmation Bias

This post is sponsored by Northbeam

Imagine this…

A friend from high school messages you on Facebook out of the blue.

You’re excited to hear from her, but it’s been 10 years since you last talked. You’re a little surprised. 

After a few messages back and forth, she reveals her real reason for reaching out: she’s selling some kind of Keto tea.

“I tried everything to lose weight, and nothing worked for me,” she says. “But the keto diet is amazing. I’ve lost 30 pounds already, and these teas make it so much easier!”

While you’re a little annoyed that she only messaged you to try to sell you something, you’re also intrigued.

You click through to your friend’s Facebook profile and scan her photos. She’s lost a ton of weight—you barely recognize her. 

Then you do a quick Google search. You type in, “Why the keto diet is so awesome,” and read the first article listed.

This article reinforces what you’d already hoped to hear—keto works.

You return to Facebook, and there’s a new message from your friend. 

She says, “No pressure, but do you want more info about the keto tea?”

What do you do?

In today’s edition of Why We Buy, we’re taking a look at Confirmation Bias – why we seek out information that confirms what we want to believe.

Let’s get into it…

“Top Marketing Newsletters You Need to Subscribe To”

The Psychology of Confirmation Bias 🧠

Confirmation Bias is the tendency to favour information that confirms our existing beliefs or attitudes.

In short, we often hear what we want to hear.

Our desire to confirm that we’re right is often so strong that even when presented with new information that contradicts our beliefs, we often dismiss it or search for evidence that it’s incorrect.

Social media can exacerbate this problem since algorithms are trained to show us more posts from people who think as we do, which can warp our sense of reality.

Inside Your Buyer’s Mind 🧐

Your buyer wants to be right.

They may not realize it, but they subconsciously seek out information that validates their existing beliefs or supports the choices they already want to make. 

Being right makes buyers feel good about themselves. It feeds their ego, and those feel-good vibes can easily be transferred to individuals or brands that share their beliefs. 

Why should you care about confirmation bias? Because it’s much easier to sell to someone who already believes what you believe than it is to change their mind.

The opposite is also true. 

If adopting your solution requires a prospective buyer to challenge a long-held belief… get ready for pushback. When our beliefs are entwined with our personal identity, changing our minds means changing our identity.

That’s a really hard sell because buyers would rather miss out on potential benefits than admit they were wrong.

How To Apply This 🤑

Alright, so how can we apply this right now to sell more?

Find your believers

People are likely already searching for information that supports their worldview in a way that’s relevant to you.

Find out who your champions are, what they believe, and who they trust for information so you can figure out how to get in front of them sooner.

Dave Asprey has grown a massive following of health enthusiasts. Dave’s followers want to believe they can overcome health challenges that they face with smart interventions.

By partnering with Dave, Mute Snoring bypasses possible objections in their buyer’s minds like “does this REALLY work?” and instead they believe “this must work because Dave uses it.”

Arm buyers with any information they need to help other decision-makers become believers, too (like an easy-to-share video…).

Validate their buying decision

Use facts, data, and success stories to make people feel confident in their buying decision. 

This helps push buyers past their Confirmation Bias with proof you’re not just another snake oil salesman.

Show your buyers they’re making the right decision while they’re actively in the process of purchasing. 

Here’s an in-house example from the cart page of our Clarity Call Cheatsheets:

Testimonials from happy customers validate the buying decision by giving leads insight into what the experience of having this product will feel and look like.

Give naysayers ‘an out’

If you’re trying to convince a prospect to change their worldview, bombarding them with facts rarely helps.

Rather than telling them their current solution or opinion is wrong, show them how the world has changed.

Lots of people are nervous about AI taking their jobs. Many are unconsciously seeking out info that it’s not as powerful or useful as they think.

Dickie Bush “gives an out” with this Twitter thread.

He calls out his original naysaying attitude and shows the thinking process that led him to change his mind.

Now, his audience that also doubted ChatGPT can feel like they have a reason to start believing in it *without* bruising their egos.

The Short of It 💥

People like being right.

Being right makes us feel good about ourselves and, by association, makes us feel good about the brands that reinforce our perspective.

It’s much easier to sell to people who share your worldview than it is to convince them to change their perspective. 

That said, you can help buyers to update their beliefs by giving them an out.

Until next time, happy selling.



Wanna really get inside your buyer’s head?

There are a few ways I can help:

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  3. Book a 1:1 strategy call with Katelyn and get the answers you need to get unstuck and move forward with confidence

Thank you to our featured sponsor

Written By Katelyn

Katelyn Bourgoin is the CEO of Customer Camp, a 4X founder, and a cheese lover. She lives by a simple mantra: whoever gets closer to the customer wins.

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