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Truth by Association

 

Techniques General persuasion > Articles on persuasion > Truth by Association

Description | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

To produce a convincing argument that something is true, first associate it with something else that is already accepted as true.

If necessary, spend time developing the unassailable truth of the first truth before associating the second item with it.

Example

We all know that Shakespeare wrote great plays. Wilkins was a a good friend of Shakespeare and wrote several plays which of course are of high quality.

You already have a Ford which you've said has been very reliable, which of course you need. So let's look at some other Fords.

Discussion

The basic equations that prove truth by association are as follows:

A = true;
B is associated with A;
Therefore B = true.

Our brains are associative and easily connect things together. In particular, we assume that if two things are similar in some way, they are likely to be similar in others ways, including abstractions such as reliability and truth.

This principle is used in branding where the attributes of one item are assumed to also be found in another item. In this way we conclude all Volvo cars are strong, Porche's are fast, Toyotas are reliable and so on.

See also

Association principle, Brand management

 

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