Jones, E.E., Ingratiation: A Social-Psychological Analysis, 1965, Chapter 2.

This chapter is on the various types of ways people attempt to ingratiate themselves to others. The three major tactics for ingration are other-enhancement, opinion conformity, and self-presentation (with giving gifts and rendering favors a possible fourth).

Complimentary Other-Enhancement
Basically it means flattery. The peson focuses and often exaggerates the positive side, and ignores the negative side, with the goal to communicate the idea that the ingratiator thinks highly of the other person.

This tactic succeeds often because people find it difficult not to like people who think highly of them.

To succeed (even despite internal dislike of the other person), the ingratiator must give his compliments credibility. One way is to make sure the reason for the ingratiation isn't apparent, or the future "favor" needed isn't obvious or relevant at the time of the compliments.

Another tactic is to tell a third person flattering remarks and have them "get back" to the target person. Credibility is established in this process.

One must also make sure the compliments are plausible, yet still more lavish than the target person thinks they deserve. It's best to target a person't perceived weaknesses for flattery. It's the person's doubts about themselves that open them up for flattery.

Another effect, the "posivity effect" states that people tend to like people who seem to approve of them than those who disapprove of them.

One can also complicate the flattery to make it more credible. In a two-sided message strategy, one could mix negative comments (that the target is fully aware of) with flattery at attributes the target is uncertain of. Also comments that put him relatively higher than others on some criteria may be more gratifying. Flattery and ingratiation tend to operate in a hinterland of ambiquity.

Another tactic is to start with more negative comments to create an "approval deprivation", then to follow up with more positive comments (risky but potentially effective).

The "friendly insult" is commonly used by men to suggest admiration. The insult suggests to the target that they have the attention of the person and that they have the strength and good nature to survive the attack.

Conformity in Opinion, Judgement, and Behavior
A second tactic is conforming to the various ways of the target person. The belief is that people like those with apparently similar values. It can range from simple agreement to mimicry. Unlike verbal flattery, mimicry and other complex forms of conformity may be more difficult to develop and sustain, especially when they don't actually conform to your real opinions or behaviors.

Another tactic to ingratiation is to allow the target to "convice" you of their opinion. Various studies show that either consistent conformity or conformity preceded by sufficient resistance are both good strategies at ingratiation. However, it's important not to merely change your opinion each time you hear the target's opinion -- try to state your opinion (which you believe is also theirs) before the target states theirs -- it will seem more sincere.

Another effective method is to disagree on irrelevant topics to establish some personal independence from the target, and then appear to agree or switch to agreement on relevant topics.

Self-Presentation
A third tactic is to present one's own attributes in a manner that the target would approve and like. The successful ingratiator models themself on the targets "ideal".

The ingratiator can either focus on their strengths and virtues, or present themselves in such a way as to increase the strengths and virtues of the target person. For either tactic, credibility remains important. Actions such as humility and modesty can also work. Asking for advice or assistance can also be gratifying to the target.

One can also revel sensitive personal opinions to convey the flattery of implied trust and understanding.

The level of status between the ingratiator and target are important. If the ingratiator is high status, they should stress humility. If they are lower status, they should stress their positive values.

Rendering Favors
It is unclear whether performing favors produces attraction merely implies obligation for reciprocity. However, performing a favor without any real hope of reciprocity may be a very successful strategy.