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FutureNow Post
Friday, Nov. 13, 2009 at 1:00 pm

5 Ways to Court Your Visitor

November 13th, 2009

courtingAttracting visitors to your site is similar to the dating scene and wooing your prospective partner. And, like in courting, there are some hard-fast rules of engagement for attracting your prospect.

1. Look Nice – You want to put your best face forward. Your homepage is often the first thing that your visitor sees when they visit your site, so make sure that it is aesthetically pleasing and easy on the eye. Remember, for a vast majority of sites, the homepage has…

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FutureNow Post
Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2009 at 9:00 am

How Would Sterling Cooper Deal with Digital Natives?

October 28th, 2009

I perused a recent survey conducted in the U.K. about how young adults, a.k.a. “Digital Natives,” feel about the Web.  Like all surveys of this age group and how they interact with technology, it was fascinating.

The survey involved nearly a thousand participants ages 16 to 24, and the good news for us as online marketers was that 75% of respondents said that they “couldn’t live without the Internet.” Wow, that’s a bold statement indicating that the Web will continue to be a…

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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2009 at 4:06 pm

FAQ Page = A Sign Warning Drivers of Potholes

August 18th, 2009

Unanswered QuestionsThink about it: if those questions really are FREQUENTLY ASKED, why the heck isn’t your regular copy answering your visitors’ questions?

Unanswered questions keep visitors from buying/converting — that’s not theory; it’s a fact!

So why, oh why, would you knowingly allow your persuasive copy to ignore a frequently asked question?  Why would you possibly be content with hiding the answers to your prospective customers’ questions in an FAQ page?  Are you trying to weed out all but the most…

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FutureNow Article
Thursday, Jul. 30, 2009

A Copywriter’s Intro to Frame-switching and Nested Storytelling

July 30th, 2009

Here’s the first thing to remember about frame switching as it applies to copywriting:

All copywriting stories are “nested.”

Matryoshka+doll-1In writing copy you inevitably create – at a minimum – one frame of reference: the one between your authorial voice and the reader.

In fact, copywriting teachers often advise aspiring writers to “talk” onto the page as if they’re talking to a best friend, simply because that mental exercise animates that almost invisible frame of reference in the mind of the writer.* Writers who…

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FutureNow Post
Monday, Jul. 13, 2009 at 8:24 am

Can Copy Create (added) Value On Its Own?

July 13th, 2009

ebay_pokemon_cards_bidIf a pack of Pokemon cards cost under $7 new, how much do you think an unopened pack would go for on e-bay?

What if the seller told an amusing story about that particular pack of Pokemon cards in the product description – would you bid more based on that?  Do you think others might?

Sounds silly, but based on a real-life incident, one mother collected $103.50 from the top bid (out of 44 other bids) on her pack of Pokemon…

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FutureNow Post
Thursday, Jul. 9, 2009 at 2:29 pm

Pringles use of Story Appeal

July 9th, 2009

Pringle AdIf you haven’t heard yet, Pringles has received some rather high praise for a humorous and clickable banner ad.  But if you look past the fun-to-click aspect of the ad, you’ll find that the actual invitation to click the ad is rather subtle.

Nothing in the ad itself looks “clickable” – no colored and underlined text, no 3-d lighting effects or button-ish looking objects, etc.

Just a small word bubble from the Pringles guy saying “click.”  And if you scroll…

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FutureNow Post
Monday, Jun. 8, 2009 at 6:29 pm

Visual Scandal, Story Appeal, and Banner Ads

June 8th, 2009

Steve Krug has famously compared Web pages to billboards, meaning that Web visitors are task oriented, and therefore on-the-move.  They click through websites, sizing up any individual page’s content in about as much time as a driver takes to glance up at a billboard, roughly 7 seconds or so.

The difference of course, is that material in the active window is being actively and consciously engaged and evaluated by the Web visitor, who can then slow down and read material…

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FutureNow Post
Thursday, May. 21, 2009 at 10:51 am

What Would Online Retailing Look Like in the Offline World

May 21st, 2009
YouTube Preview Image

In my last post, I made use of a brick and mortar analogy to the current online behavior of some e-commerce Websites, and even recommended the use of those analogies when analyzing online persuasion strategies.

And since at least a few readers responded positively to the idea, I thought I’d share one of Get Elastic’s videos  dramatizing exactly one of those analogies, as well as sharing a link to their whole series.

So welcome to The Crazy, Messed-up World of E-commerce!

And…

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FutureNow Post
Monday, May. 18, 2009 at 2:51 pm

Can Bad Assumptions Lead to “Gorilla Marketing”?

May 18th, 2009

In the offline world, have you ever been chased by retail staff because you opted not to buy something at their store?

Never?

You mean no one has ever blocked the exit and said something like, “Hey, I saw you put that bottle of wine in your cart, why didn’t you buy it?”

It sounds funny until you realize that most online remarketing services offer to do exactly that to your website visitors.  They’ll pester them with e-mails, pop-ups, and phone calls should…

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FutureNow Post
Thursday, Apr. 30, 2009 at 8:21 am

On a Scale From 1 to 5 Surveys Stink. Here’s Why!

April 30th, 2009

You know the kind of surveys I’m talking about, the ones that ask you to rate something on a scale of 1-5, they are called Likert surveys.  I doubt if anyone actually likes them, but I truly loath them.  Here’s why:

The rating system is too clunky. Most people get stuck between 3 and 4, usually with 4 sounding too good and 3 too wishy-washy, meaning that the results are often more indicative of a temporary mood than an honest…

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