Aristotle’s three modes of persuasion are ethos, logos, and pathos. They all carry essential weight in the art of persuading someone to do or understand something. The most important mode of persuasion is ethos. Ethos specifically conveys to the audience the elements of trustworthiness, authority, expertise, and relatability about the topic that is being transmitted.

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When someone feels that you are trustworthy, they are more likely to be open to the information you are presenting. It is easier for the audience to believe that you are telling the truth and they will believe in what you say. Being trustworthy also transfers a sense of morality and ethics that lets the audience see that you carry a strong moral character.

Having authority, whether formal or informal, has a lot to do with how well the audience is receiving your information. An example of this would be an education authority figure. A teacher has authority over the students in the classroom, so the students are more inclined to listen and believe the information from the teacher. This can come in many forms, sometimes something as simple as standing on a stage or using a speaker system can help convey authority.

Expertise refers to how well you know and understand the information you are trying to inform others of. This is where your experience, skills, and achievements should be demonstrated. Without expertise and a wide knowledge regarding the topic, no one is inclined to the listen openly to your information, in fear that you don’t understand the subject matter yourself.

Lastly, is relatability. This allows to person persuading the chance to get on the same level as the audience and show that they have some similarities. Whether it is by the same career, personality type, culture, or age group, it allows listeners to be receptive due to sharing commonalities.

Overall, ethos is about getting the audience open enough to have them listen and understand that you are knowledgeable, relatable, and trustworthy regarding the information you want to convey. Ethos is the more important because it relies on honesty as opposed to emotions or logic.