How to Use Science Friction to Increase Sales. And Email, Too

I read a fascinating article last year, just found back the link.

Here’s the deal: Have you ever wondered why sometimes an object like a sofa or a cupboard seems impossible to move?

When you clearly remember that last year when you put it there, you were perfectly able to shift the object without much trouble?

Things don’t get heavier by themselves, in this universe, so what’s the deal?

How come a piano that last year you could pull away from the wall, now seems glued to the floor?

In a way, because it is glued to the floor.

Science says so.

See, the actual contact surface area of an object is far smaller than the surface as you measure it.

It’s because of something called asperities, and you can’t see them with the naked eye.

Every object, no matter how smooth it may look, has microscopic irregularities.

Little bumps, valleys, scratches.

It’s only the little bumps that are actually in contact with another surface.

That’s why only part of a surface is actually in contact with another surface.

Now here’s where it gets interesting: over time, the pressure of the object causes those asperities to compress.

Minute changes, but the result is that the contact area becomes bigger as the asperities become flatter.

And that creates more resistance.

You come back after a year and you just can’t get it to move.


In business, you can use this principle to get more sales.

The longer and more frequently someone is exposed to you, the higher the ‘friction’ will become.

For example: they say that before a sale happens, there need to be 12 moments of contact (or 9, or 15, depending who you listen to).

Someone needs to see you or hear about you at least 12 times before they’ll buy.

In the relationship you have with a prospect, that means that the friction increases over time. In other words: They’ll be getting to be more keen on buying from you.

Bit by bit. Step by step.

The best possible way to do that is by using email.

Email is personal, it’s where a large part of our life happens.

Email is also high-frequency: people check their email several times a day.

Email is also fairly noise free: on Facebook you compete with far more messages than you do in an inbox.

And of course, email is ‘opt-away’, unlike social media which is ‘scroll away’.

(Email stays there until they deal with it. On Facebook two updates are enough to push yours below the fold).

And when you email people, you do that because they opted in.

That means they gave you permission to talk to them.

They essentially told you: Show me why I want to do business with you.

Using email is the best way to show that.

Just like with these emails I send every day.

So if you want to start reducing asperities and get more sales, start emailing.

If you want to be sure you’re doing it right, hire me.







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Martin helped our co-working space get to full occupancy and $25.000 monthly revenue in less than a year.

~ Antonio Herrezuelo,
Avenida Capital

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