You can certainly influence how someone reacts to something by priming them to see it from a certain perspective. For example suppose I'm speaking to a non-specific Christian and I and I'm going to show them a news article about the latest Catholic kiddy fiddling scandal but before I do I'll prime them to react more negatively than they otherwise would by first discussing the sanctity of innocence and how those in power have a responsibility to use it wisely.
Of course this is by no means reliable, someone who knows me or at least knows of me is likely going to recognize that I'm winding up for the rhetorical one-two punch, in which case it won't have the same effect.
If it is applied properly, then it is effective. The fact that Wikipedia calls it pseudoscientific and further describes the scientific criticism of NLP lacking empirical support is actually a form of NLP. If you're a scientific rationalist requiring empirical evidence, then they anchored your belief to shape your belief around NLP and its effectiveness.
At the same time, I think that it is extremely misrepresented by people who learn techniques but don't understand the underlying psychological principles behind it.
When Derren Brown claims to use it, he's actually just doing old tricks. For example, in his heavy box trick, he claims NLP makes the participants feel the box is heavier. In reality, he's performing the same trick by Robert Houdin using an electro-magnet. You can find Derren brown admitting that he's only doing tricks in interviews.
Think of it this way, if trauma is associated and reflected by a visceral response to hearing a word, then that trauma response is anchored to that word. That is programmed (anchored/conditioned) into your psychology.