Whether you're an author, a blogger, or a butcher you need to gain influence to have people consume your product. Even if you're just a nine-to-fiver with no ambition, you'll have no social life if you don't somehow gain a bit of influence.

Sonia Simone has a blog called Remarkable Communication and in a guest post on copyblogger she compares the old-school approach of gaining attention and influence to throwing a harpoon at people. Very messy method and, if you're not a blogger or book writer doing promotion, you'll need to translate her language from copywriting to your area of desire.

If you're that nine-to-fiver, Simone's words, "hammers the reader with red headlines, yellow highlighting, and aggressive copy" might translate into "alarms the potential friend with over-blown promises and lurid tales". That might get a part-time drinking buddy but won't build a lasting bond...

Then, she compares that method with the longer-term weaving of a net of relationships--interactions that last longer, mean more, and give you an attractiveness that exudes influence.

It's fascinating to me that two basic methods of gaining influence--a gory, intrusive one and another that builds magnetic trust--can be applied in nearly all areas of life. Hmmm... Have we got a basic principle by the tail??

If you need to explore this whole influence thing in more detail, Check out the HubSpot sponsored Influencer Project. They've gotten 60 very influential people and given each of them one minute to give advice. There's a link to get an audio version and its transcript but Jeanne Hopkins was kind enough to also offer a list of the ideas in outline form.

So, even if you don't have a book you want sell; even if you don't have a blog needing a wider audience; even if you don't have choice cuts of meat and no buyers; even if you're just a meek nine-to-fiver who'd like some friends, check out those articles. I made sure the links open a new page for you so you can read the posts then flip back here and tell us what helped the most :-)