Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: October 03, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412956253 | Print ISBN: 9781412916707 | Online ISBN: 9781412956253| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Brad J. Sagarin
The foot-in-the-door is an influence technique based on the following idea: If you want someone to do a large favor for you, get him or her to do a small favor first. The power of the foot-in-the-door stems from its ability to start with a small, innocuous request and move on to a large, onerous request. In one of the first scientific tests of the foot-in-thedoor, psychologists Jonathan L. Freedman and Scott C. Fraser began with a very small request: They had a researcher go door to door in the California suburb of Palo Alto and ask homeowners to put a small sign in their windows that said “Be a safe driver.” Why would anyone say no to such an innocuous request? After all, who's against safe driving? Little did these homeowners realize, though, that ...