The Choice Factory
By Richard Shotton

#1 Amazon bestseller

Winner of BBH's World Cup of advertising books

Available in six languages


Before you can influence decisions, you need to understand what drives them. In The Choice Factory, Richard Shotton sets out to help you learn. By observing a typical day of decision-making, from trivial food choices to significant work-place moves, he investigates how our behaviour is shaped by psychological shortcuts.


With a clear focus on the marketing potential of knowing what makes us tick, Shotton has drawn on evidence from academia, real-life ad campaigns and his own original research. 


The Choice Factory is written in an entertaining and highly-accessible format, with 25 short chapters, each addressing a cognitive bias and outlining simple ways to apply it to your own marketing challenges.


Supporting his discussion, Shotton adds insights from new interviews with some of the smartest thinkers in advertising, including Rory Sutherland, Lucy Jameson and Mark Earls. From priming to the pratfall effect, charm pricing to the curse of knowledge, the science of behavioural economics has never been easier to apply to marketing. 


The Choice Factory is the an advertising essential.


This book is a Haynes Manual for understanding consumer behaviour. You should buy a copy - and then buy another copy to give to one of the 97% of people in marketing who are too young to remember what a bloody Haynes Manual is. 

- Rory Sutherland, columnist for The Spectator and Executive Creative Director, Ogilvy One

Most books in this area are academic and dry as dust. If you want to know how research and sociology can impact on real life in the real world, Richard's book will show you - using simple words and examples that real people can understand

- Dave Trott, creative director, author of Predatory Thinking and founder of three creative agencies

In a cacophony of overstatement, Richard Shotton possesses a melodious and balanced voice. In this short but powerful tome you can learn about how marketing actually does influence consumers. Or, for the more prosaic among us, how to get people to re-use towels, buy wine when German Oompah music is playing and select a broadband supplier by mentioning Charing Cross Station. The book also mentions me (all too briefly) which I also find enticing.

- Mark Ritson, columnist for Marketing Week and Professor at Melbourne business school

Actionable, memorable and powerful... Shotton has taken the jewels of behavioral economics and made them practical. 

- Seth Godin, author of All Marketers are Liars


Comprehensive, compelling and immensely practical, the Choice Factory brings the building blocks of behaviour change together in one place. 

- Richard Huntington, Chairman & Chief Strategy Officer, Saatchi & Saatchi


A top-class guide for those who want to put BE to work, rather than just illuminate their journey to work. 

- Mark Earls, author of Herd


A guide to your own mind, a roadmap of your blind spots, a toolkit for better advertising. The Choice Factory employs robust behavioural science in an approachable manner to demonstrate how you make and influence decisions. Synthesizing a vast body of research, live experiments and numerous examples, he shows that there is a bias for every occasion and how to use them as tools to craft better communications. 

- Faris Yakob, author of Paid Attention


Richard delivers a wealth of cases proving the efficacy of working with, rather than against, the grain of human nature. This is catnip for the industry

- Phil Barden, author of Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy


Richard Shotton's application of behavioural economics is bang on the button. This book is timely, insightful, fascinating and entertaining. 

- Dominic Mills, ex-editor of Campaign


If you're a marketer, understanding what really makes people tick - as opposed to what they might tell you - is vital. This book takes us on an elegant, witty and digestible tour of the 25 main principles of behavioural science. Richard Shotton has read widely so that you don't have to, but he gives full credit to his many sources should you wish to pursue any of the topics further. This is a delightful and indispensable read for anyone in marketing, particularly those early in their careers. 

- Tess Alps, Chair of Thinkbox, the UK's marketing body for commercial broadcasters


At last someone has written a commonsense, practical guide to using behavioural science to sell things. It is backed by lots of research and working examples drawn from the author's own experience and his encyclopedic knowledge of the industry. In short, this is a classic advertising textbook in the making. 

- Steve Harrison, British copywriter, creative director and author

Website by Tom Shotton