The Convincing Chameleon: the Impact of Mimicry on Persuasion

Rob Tanner, Duke
Tanya Chartrand, Duke

Title: The Convincing Chameleon: The Impact of Mimicry on Persuasion

Rob Tanner – Duke University

Tanya Chartrand  - Duke University

Rick van Baaren - University of Nijmegen


This paper investigates the effects of mimicry on persuasion in the context
 of consumer product appraisal. We propose that the prosociality induced by
mimicry will lead to enhanced persuasiveness, and thus increased product
preference, in sales-like interactions. Three experiments were conducted to
explore these ideas. Results indicate that mimicry can positively influence
preferences for products presented by one individual to another during, or
directly after, a dyadic interaction.  Of particular interest from a sales
perspective, our results also suggest that this effect may actually be
enhanced when the mimicker is transparently invested in the mimicked
individual’s appraisal of the product.
[ to cite ]:
Rob Tanner and Tanya Chartrand (2006) ,"The Convincing Chameleon: the Impact of Mimicry on Persuasion", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 33, eds. Connie Pechmann and Linda Price, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 409-412.