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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Apr. 28, 2009 at 9:14 am

Why the Action Flick Always Gets Watched First

April 28th, 2009

So I’m at the local Block Buster, holding a typical 3-movie stack:

a serious or respectable drama or film classic, a romance or chick-friendly movie for the wife, and some guilty pleasure action movie or low-brow comedy.

Guess which movie gets watched last or returned unwatched?

You betcha, it’s usually the drama/classic.  Oh the shame!

The thing is, unless I had added the high-brow movie to my “menu,” I’d likely have forgone the guilty pleasure of the action flick and just picked up the…

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FutureNow Post
Wednesday, Apr. 8, 2009 at 7:10 am

Doesn’t Graphic Design/Layout Affect Scanning Patterns?

April 8th, 2009

Jakob Nielsen’s new post regarding how to optimize for online visitor’s F-patterned scanning is a must read.  There’s a lot of sound advice there, many of it confirming or aligning with Future Now recommendations.  Stuff like:

Don’t waste hyperlink words on non-descriptive or generic words.  Make links keyword rich and ensure that customers can predict where the link will take them.  Plan and link for maximum “scent” Use plain language.  In other words, talk to the dog in…

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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Mar. 24, 2009 at 5:13 am

Which of the Three Layers of “Fogg” Are You Stuck In?

March 24th, 2009

Throughout my career as a conversion analyst, I’ve had the opportunity to work with a large variety of clients in a variety of industries, and in very different circumstances. Some may be getting a large amount of traffic, but having a really difficult time converting their visitors due to a lack of branding or a lack of scent on their site. Others might be getting very low traffic, while some others might have a hard time converting early and middle…

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FutureNow Post
Friday, Mar. 20, 2009 at 9:08 am

Personality Secrets of American Idol’s Judges

March 20th, 2009

Is American Idol’s newest judge an attempt to cover all 4 temperaments and create the natural dynamic that comes with that?

According to the American Idol Website:

“We had originally intended for American Idol to have four judges,” said executive producer Cecile Frot-Coutaz. “We’ve seen from our international series that having a fourth judge creates a dynamic that benefits both the contestants and the viewers.”

Of course, this just means they wanted 4 judges, and not necessarily that they wanted the judges to line…

...continue to read "Personality Secrets of American Idol’s Judges"

FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Mar. 10, 2009 at 7:51 am

Are Two Products More Credible Than One?

March 10th, 2009

After my initial post on blog-ified and geographically falsified landing pages, I ran into a few more such pages and they all shared the “2-product combo with a free trial of each” strategy.

So it’s only fair to ask: can you get sophisticated and wary audiences to buy pseudo-snake oil simply by switching from extolling the virtues of a single miracle product to praising the miraculous combination of two semi-wondrous products?  As in this teeth whitening example:

Well, yes, actually.  …

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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2009 at 4:04 pm

Ogilvy-inspired-but-Sleaze-ified Tricks

February 24th, 2009

I guess it was professional curiosity, but I actually clicked one of those facelift-in-a-bottle ads while visiting some blog.  And hell if I wasn’t intrigued by the landing page’s sleaze-bag persuasive techniques.

Take a look at the screen shot I took of the landing page.  What do you think most caught my eye?  Here’s a hint: think layout and bolding.

Straight out of The Ogilvy Playbook

Here are two relevant quotes taken from pages 73 and 90 of Ogilvy on…

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FutureNow Post
Monday, Jan. 19, 2009 at 3:30 pm

Right Now Is Always The Right Time

January 19th, 2009

[A personal story with a business ending]

Over New Year’s, I went on a dance cruise to Mexico — a group of dancers goes on a regular cruise ship and effectively “takes over” the dancing, especially late night — and everyone (including non-dancers) ends up having a great time. We’d planned this trip back in the summer, with my two wacky cabin-mates absolutely insisting that we upgrade to a Junior Suite something-or-other which had a lot more room and a balcony.…

...continue to read "Right Now Is Always The Right Time"

FutureNow Post
Thursday, Jan. 15, 2009 at 3:23 pm

It Ain’t About the Technology

January 15th, 2009

That’s my standard response when asked about Social Media.  That’s not to say technology is unimportant, but that technology never really changes how people behave, think, and feel.  Human nature drives that; technology only changes the constraints previously placed on human preferences.

If you’ve ever shared office space with colleagues you really liked and respected, you’ve already twittered.  You’ve already gotten a “feed” of interesting thoughts, updates, recommendations, etc.

Twitter simply allows you to do that with people in other…

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FutureNow Article
Monday, Dec. 8, 2008

Branding Through Reverse Camouflage

December 8th, 2008

Do you have the courage to say what you’re not?

Most people don’t want to draw that sharp line of distinction, and it’s why their marketing efforts blend into the clutter.

Discernible edges and silhouettes allow us to visually “grip” an object and separate figure from ground.  Eliminate those edges and you’ll effectively camouflage yourself.

In the picture above, notice how the legs present a solid silhouette and are easily identified, while the man’s upper body camouflage breaks up his silhouette and…

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FutureNow Post
Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2008 at 7:46 am

7 Ways to Win Over Reluctant Buyers

November 26th, 2008

“Do I really need that?”

Those are probably the 5 scariest words in website optimization today.  More and more visitors are asking themselves that question and then not buying.

They’re applying a considered purchase mindset to much lower price-points than ever before.  And most websites’ copywriting is coming up short in the face of this new challenge, since most of it was written to describe rather than to intensify desire or persuade.

So with that in mind, here’s a quick and dirty…

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