Logos, Ethos, Pathos, Kairos

Created: April 5, 2023
Updated: August 10, 2023

Logos, Ethos, Pathos, Kairos are the four components of rhetoric. They come from Aristotle and although ancient, are timeless elements of persuasion.

  • Logos - appeal to logic and reason.
  • Ethos - appeal to authority.
  • Kairos - timeliness.
  • Pathos - appeal to emotion and feeling.

An advert or marketing message doesn’t have to be limited to just one of these. An authority figure (ethos) can make an emotional (pathos) plea.

Using rhetorical devices in marketing

Though rhetoric tends to be about spoken persuasion, it doesn’t take a genius to recognize crossovers with B2B tactics

  • Ethos (authority)
    • Gartner Reviews
    • G2Crowd Badges
  • Logos (logic)
    • ROI studies/calculators (does anyone believe those?)
  • Kairos (timeliness)
    • Discount if you sign by end of quarter