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The small BIG: Small Changes that Spark Big Influence by [Martin, Steve, Goldstein, Noah, Cialdini, Robert B.]
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Kindle Edition, 28 Aug 2014
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Product Description

At some point today you will have to influence or persuade someone - perhaps ask a colleague a favour, negotiate with a contractor or get your spouse to put out the recycling. In The small BIG, three heavyweights from the world of persuasion science and practice - Steve Martin, Noah Goldstein and Robert Cialdini - describe how, in today's information-overloaded world, it is now the smallest changes that lead to the biggest differences in results.

Offering deceptively simple suggestions and explaining the extensive scientific research behind them, the small BIG presents over fifty small changes - from the little adjustments that make meetings more effective to the costless alteration to correspondence that saved a government millions.

the small BIG is full of surprising, powerful - and above all, tiny - changes that could mean the difference between failure and success.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 804 KB
  • Print Length: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Profile Books; Main edition (28 August 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00KC0H1FA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #41,502 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.4 out of 5 stars 64 reviews
54 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Self-help and self-promo help 7 September 2014
By Jenny Schwartz - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Small BIG: Small Changes that Spark Big Influence is a pretty good book on the topic of ethically persuading people to change their behaviour. Grounded in research and mixing discussion with examples, the book intrigued me enough that I jotted notes and my own ideas as I read. This is pretty rare these days for me, and a sign of how engaged I was.

Running quickly through my notes.

Changing people's environment can change their minds. Context is important.
Focus on similarities - shared identity
You can lock into other people's commitments (and the implication I took from this was that when companies ask us to filling surveys, they're not after feedback, but about the commitment we feel to the firm after we've committed our time via filling in the survey).
A sense of owing your future self can motivate self-change
Procrastination - use short expiration dates
A promise of potential (which has an arousing quality) outshines reality (this I hadn't expected)
When an expert is uncertain, that intrigues us.
We assume important people sit in the centre of a gathering
Power increases and our cortisol (stress hormone) levels decrease when we adopt open, expansive posture.
Just ASK
Focus people on the opportunity cost of not doing what you want them to do.

And the notes go on.

Shortish chapters, engaging style. I got a lot from this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great concept; good execution 30 November 2014
By JD - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this after hearing Martin interviewed on the HBR podcast. And I love the concept - there are many ways to use observations from human behavioral science to direct best practice. Moreover, many of these are easy to implement and have pronounced effects - hence the concept of the "small BIG".

The organization of the book is not its strength. The chapters are really short vignette case studies designed by the authors to be digested in tiny chunks. Really tiny chunks. Unfortunately, this does not allow for serious discussion of the diversity of applications of each observation or the specific limitations of each approach. In one example, British taxpayers (apparently often quite delinquent in prompt tax payments) were reminded that the majority of taxpayers do remit taxes on time, and the effects were real. However, there is less question as to whether this would work in different cultures, under different tax systems, or other related concerns. Will this approach really change the fates of accounts receivable professionals?

That said, some of the lessons are fantastic. As an administrator in medicine, I was fascinating at the approach taken to patient "no-shows", which have a double-whammy effect. First they create situations in which medical professionals are deployed but not reimbursed. Just as importantly, they prevent patients from being seen! If one calls to make an appointment that is booked by a patient who then no-shows, the patient who wishes to come in cannot receive care yet is blocked by a patient who has not used that slot. And in most markets, access is at a premium. I will not give away the authors' intervention, but it is shockingly simple - so shocking that I would like to really see whether it works.

In any case, this book is certainly worth a read, and I would read other books by the same authors. I just wish that they had selected fewer topics on which to delve more deeply rather than to create a well-meaning, but underdeveloped, sampler.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Guidebook for Direct Marketers 17 December 2014
By Walter Spoonbill - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The strength of "The Small BIG' " is also its weakness. Many business books rely on one big idea that would make a compelling article, but after 200 pages of using Amazon-Zappos-flavour-of-the-year organisations, to retrospectively prove a point, irritation overwhelms insight.

"The Small BIG" strength is that it packs 50+ tips into short, sharp chapters. Each one has some neuroscience/behavioural economics/testing to validate it. Many won't cost a cent & are claimed to boost response rates. The 50+ is also the weakness - I read the book a few weeks back, recommended it to a client who relies on direct marketing, yet now, writing this review, cannot remember one specific example.

Perhaps I am suffering from end of year brain-drain (writing this on 17th December) - however I think this book works best as a reference for direct marketers. Some of the best business books adjust thinking. "The Small BIG" modifies actions. In the right hands, it can be a great investment.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for anyone in leadership, business, education, communicator, volunteer efforts, etc. 25 June 2017
By Texasotan - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As the book includes 52 principles, I suggest reading a chapter per week. I just read the book in one week, and that was too fast. I took a lot of notes, because this book is packed with so much valuable persuasion research and practical ideas, and I want to implement as much as possible.
5.0 out of 5 stars Small chapters and simple words - but with a big punch? 3 March 2016
By genericfiller - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book after seeing some of their videos they have on YouTube. I have not been disappointed.

I run a few online affiliate sites, and the ideas in this book have been worth gold. There are 50 chapters each with different research on marketing, psychology, and/or sociology, with the key lesson on how something very small can have a large change in your influence of others.

It's easy to read and well written. A must for anyone in marketing, sales, or anyone who needs to influence others.