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16: Presenting Evidence and Proving Your... > 16: Presenting Evidence and Proving ... - Pg. 176

176 P E R S UAS I V E B U S I N E S S P ROPO S A LS Things our clients say about us. These claims, which typically take the form of quotes, references, and testimonials, are more compel- ling. After all, your clients don't have to say anything at all. The fact that they're willing to do it is somewhat impressive. On the other hand, there's the psychological phenomenon known as "hindsight bias." We're all aware of it, even though we may not know the technical name for it. When people make a choice, they then be- come much more convinced it was the right thing to do and will start recommending it to others, even though they originally weren't that sure about it and even though the actual results may not justify that level of commitment. As a result, our clients and prospects are likely to be a little bit skepti- cal about the things our clients say about us. Their skepticism is bal- anced to some extent by the fact that people think a decision is more sensible when they see others are also making it. Based on experience, we know that we make fewer mistakes when we do what others are also doing. The strongest way to buttress the value of quotes, references, and testimonials is to leverage another psychological principle: the concept of social proof. People are more comfortable listening to and believing what they hear from people who are similar to themselves. As a result, the best proof statements will come from clients who are in the same