What the Shareholders Don't Know
Let's be honest - Martians have some stupid sayings. Things like, "Green
Is As Green Does" or "It's A Long Canal That Has No Water" or "Red
Sky At Night, Red Sky Every Night." What I really like about you guys is
that your sayings make sense. It's just that sometimes you don't use them in
Now that things seem to be turning around for the dot.coms after that
horrible investment fiasco, folks are often tempted to say, "Leave Well
Enough Alone," figuring "If It Ain't Broken, Don't Fix It."
and receive a
"Increasing Conversion Rates One Step At
a wonderful site! You know how to put the powerful academic
principles of marketing and sales into practical language. A
great asset for getting past the current day hype in
Professor Allen Weiss,
"GrokDotCom is a practical and "refreshingly irreverent" free newsletter that gives you
solid ideas you can use right away to increase sales, subscriptions, opt-ins, registrations,
sweepstakes entries and phone inquiries."
"A novel newsletter which uses humor, color and frequent exclamation marks to provide sound
commonsense advice on how to improve your online sales."
Keeping The Key
"Thanks, I've already doubled my number of leads."
Good advice, under certain circumstances. Thing is, there's a world of
difference between things "not being broken" and running at peak efficiency.
If you were to read all the self-congratulatory nonsense that is published by
Internet marketers and industry executives, then you might think the industry
has turned a corner and brighter days are in the offing. Growth in consumer
acceptance does wonders to cover up simple neglect. But for how long? What
these guys forget is "A Stitch In Time Saves Nine." If you aren't
reaching for your needle and thread, then you're doomed to repeat dot.com
history. Online, the stitch that saves you time is attention to the persuasive
architecture of your Web site.
Folks are beginning to focus attention on ebusiness profits and expenses,
which is great, but 95% of companies surveyed indicate their top marketing
priority is to direct better qualified traffic to their Web sites. Huh? So
they won't buy, either? Isn't that "Putting The Cart Before The Horse,"
which ends up being "Penny Wise And Pound Foolish?" Understand that it's
not the visitor's job to adapt to your Web site, but your job to design a Web
site that successfully persuades your visitors and meets their needs. "If
The Mountain Won't Come to Mohammed, Then Mohammed Must Go To The Mountain. "
From a more scientific study
"Q: What is your company's primary interactive marketing business
A: 23% - Don't know.
Q: Channels for which US marketers have no measurement tools in place?
A: E-mail 60%, Online excluding email 56%."
It really is true: "A Fool And His Money Are Soon Parted!" Tell
me. How do you test, measure and optimize Web sites that have been built
without clear business objectives? How do you even know what's happening if you
don't measure it? Some companies have tried increasing their conversion rates
by redesigning, by employing usability testing, and by actively testing their
merchandizing mix. But really, far too few are scientifically testing the
variables that affect conversion. Every hyperlink, pixel, and word either
enhances or detracts from a website's ability to convert. Wouldn't it make
sense to know how to make it work better?
The nature of the Internet is that, with few exceptions, no visitor is forced
to do business on your website. "You Can Lead A Horse To Water But You Can't
Make It Drink. However, it makes more sense to persuade it rather than
simply hope! On the Internet if the visitor is not voluntarily participating
from click to click you're "Up The Creek Without A Paddle." Every
hyperlink should be part of a well thought out persuasive script that adapts to
the visitors' experience and expectations of relevance. Designing or redesigning
a website with
persuasive architecture is the antidote to the expensive habit of buying
better qualified traffic.
Let me ask you this: would you want to stand up and tell your shareholders
that "What They Don't Know Won’t Hurt Them?" Frankly, I don't want to
be around when they wise up to the fact that all the data and skills to create
websites are available, and folks aren't using them. When they figure out
that the myopia of expertise, the miscommunication of objectives and the
ignorance of their managers is costing them a bundle, when they discover it's
less expensive and more effective to design for conversion than to keep chasing
after new and expensive prospects, it's probably a good idea to stand far away
from the fan.
Or as we say on Mars, "A Purple-Crested Bloobulgubbler In The Hand Is
Something You Can Really Do Without."
What secret do the Search Engines
use that can easily
increase your conversion rates?
The answer is in the book
Persuasive Online Copywriting available from Amazon.
Whether you are the marketer responsible for the bottom line
or the writer creating the copy, Persuasive Online
Copywriting provides the tools you need to get
Would you like to spend two intense days in New York
Advanced Topics in Increasing
Online Conversion Rates?
On 11/20-11/21 Bryan and Jeff Eisenberg will be presenting the first
advanced course offered by the
Interactive Marketing Academy. In this hands-on
workshop you will learn the factors affecting
conversion and how to identify, measure, test and
optimize over 2,000 individual evaluation points
that reveal an incredibly detailed picture of the
relative strengths and weaknesses of your online
Wizards of Web in 2002 is scheduled for December 3-5. In three mind-expanding days, Bryan, Jeffrey and
the Roy H Williams, the Wizard of Ads, himself will
tear apart everything you think you know about how
things work online and bring the pieces back
together and share the principles of persuasion
that affect your online prospects.
Integrating the principles of AIDAS, third
dimensional realities, usability, consumer
psychology, and communications neurology you'll
discover how to utilize the Internet's advantages
and limitations to improve your online strategy's
effectiveness. This workshop will help you "grok"
(gain an intimate understanding) of effective
conversion of your visitors into sales, leads, or
subscriptions, whatever the goals for your prospects.
Choosing the Right Color Palette
Every now and again, I blush to admit, I come across an idea so splendidly
brilliant in its application of common sense that I wish I'd thought of it.
Except in this case, I learned of the idea through a dude named Joe Gillespie.1
Just as words speak volumes, so do colors. They communicate meaning; they
trigger emotional associations and evocative memories; they persuade and
discourage. You folks actually have different physiologic responses to different
colors! And 46% of you determine how credible a site is based on the overall
appeal of the visual design.2
It makes sense, then, that when you shape the impact of your online message,
you want to give some serious thought to the color palette you choose. And you
want to introduce the issue of color at the right time in the development
So here are some Grok color suggestions and a totally cool idea I wish I
could claim as my own!
When the folks here at Future Now work through the storyboard stage in the
development of a Web site's persuasive architecture, they begin by ignoring
color. Everything is rendered in grayscale.
The emotive power of color can often confuse persuasive design issues of
shape, size, placement and importance. So save the color-question for later.
Ninety-nine times out of a hundred, if you create a strong design in black and
white, you've got a design that will come alive with the careful application of
color. Nail the layout, then turn to the emotionally charged issue of color
(this'll probably save you a few design confrontations along the way, and may
even spare you having to scrap a good layout cursed with the wrong colors!).
So when you're ready to start picking the colors, how do you go about it? How
do you put together a scheme that's harmonious, pleasing, offers you the
opportunity to provide visual contrast and communicates something of the
character of your business?
Lots of folks turn to the color wheel, and pick colors based on two-, three-
and even four-color schemes. Oddly, Renoir did not do it this way. Neither did
Constable, Turner nor any other of the great masters. They got their inspiration
much the same way Joe Gillespie suggests you get yours:
"Unless you spend many hours mixing paints and trying out their various
effects and nuances, speaking with colours can be like talking in a foreign
language. Yet, walk in a garden and look around you. Nature doesn't make
mistakes with colour. No matter how vivid or subtle, they always seem to
work together ... if you take the colour juxtapositions and their
proportions from nature, you won't go far wrong."
Assemble a collection of nature pictures with subject matter or colors that
you feel represent you and what you do. When you've selected an image with a
color range that feels most appropriate, scan it into your computer, then, using
the eye-dropper tool in your image program, pick out your palette by going for
the most prominent colors.
You don't want dozens of colors, just a dominant one with variations in shade
and a few contrasting colors. Joe shows
some examples of this .
"Any palette produced like this can't help but be harmonious. It can be
as bright or as subtle as the subject requires but will virtually guarantee
a successful colour scheme. For best results, try to keep close to the
original relative proportions of colours too."
You may not wind up with a "Mona Lisa," but you'll certainly create a
masterpiece that enhances your persuasive architecture.
Web Page Design for Designers
2 Stanford Web Credibility Research