Manipulators never give anything for free. They always have an agenda, an ulterior motive, a vested interest.
Jesus taught against this. He said “freely you have received, freely give”
Flattery is manipulation. Manipulators use flattery to secure your loyalty, fostering the fear of man (people-pleasing). Remember that fear of man brings a snare. It is hard to free oneself from this bondage – by buying into this, we are giving dominance and control over ourselves to the manipulator. Manipulative people are always seeking a personal advantage and an upper hand over their “prey” in their manipulative tactics. Dominance and control is what they want, although often this is very cleverly disguised by them and they may seem extremely sacrificial and altruistic.
we want to believe the best about people and so we very often are blind or willfully ignorant of the fact that some people are malicious like this.