Archive Page 2

Q) How do you design a great sign up page? (Answer: B=mat)

I chanced this article yesterday: Why burying sign up buttons helps get more sign ups

Once you get over the salacious blog-post title (like I did; why would you want to bury/hide things from users? that just sounds evil), Dimitri made the point that a call to action alone isn’t enough to get sign ups: 

> Content is what helps them understand your product a little better and to potentially take the next step…

But what is good content that will improve conversion? How do we create good content? What must good content have? 

I got my answer this morning when I read through Stephen P. Anderson’s Seductive Interaction Design; and the answer is: B = mat

Stephen sited the Fogg Behaviour Model by Dr. BJ Fogg

> “My Behavior Model shows that three elements must converge at the same moment for a behavior to occur: Motivation, Ability, and Trigger…

> …A person has to have some level of motivation. They have to have the ability to do the behaviour. And then they have to be triggered to do the behaviour. Those three things have to happen at the same time. If any element is missing, then the behaviour won’t happen.”

>…When a behavior does not occur, at least one of those three elements is missing.”

Out of the three, triggers seem to be the most important. In Dimitri’s example, that would be the call to action button. What Dimitri’s example had was a trigger and an easy way to signup (i.e. just enter email address). What it didn’t have was content that was motivating.  

The main thing I takeaway from this lesson is a framework to evaluate interfaces. If you are wondering why you’re not getting the behaviour you desire, do you have:
m – motivation; content that is motivating
a – ability; make the behaviour easy to do
t – trigger; the call to action

I hear it works with getting your partner to take out the trash too (:

Stuck on Earth: iPad app

Great design. Today, we travel with our minds before we travel with our feet. This app answers all of our travel motivations and by observing all of our online travel habits and elegantly surmising it in one app. Genius. 

Some startling pictures of overcrowding as our world population hits 7 billion

Article: DeLorean Time Machine on auction

I dreamt about the DeLorean just a few nights ago..


Teens Respond to Pleasure, Not Pain: Parent Accordingly


The idea of parenting, and raising the kid as right as I can, is daunting to me. 

Corporal punishment, usually caning, was a big part of my childhood (I liked burning stuff up (:  ). Truth be told,  the thought of getting caned made me put down the matches a couple of times (though few). Other times, it made lighting up the liquid fuel all the more exciting. 

This article explains why. 


Too much accelerator, not enough brake
During most of the teen years……Risky behaviors feel great and are experienced as more rewarding.  Impulse control hasn’t yet caught up—nor have knowledge and judgment. Thus emotion says go, but wisdom hasn’t yet said stop.

How science changed my parenting

There are important take-home messages here for risktaking, social policy, and our understanding of teens that I will discuss in my next post.

But the first thing I took home from this reading had to do with my parenting. TEENS ARE MOTIVATED BY PLEASURE, NOT BY PAIN.

Thus telling a 13 year old that he will fail a test tomorrow if he doesn’t study isn’t that effective in inducing willing compliance. He knows that. But risk avoidance is not emotionally motivating. And that video game sure is.

Reminding a 13 year old how good it feels to accomplish something, how happy he’ll be when he does well, and how much more time he will have to play if he studies efficiently works a lot better.  Those POSITIVE emotions activate their incentive processing center. And teens are VERY sensitive to pleasure.

So I tried it. 

I stopped reminding my son of all the negative consequences of not doing what he was supposed to.

I consistently pointed out how good it felt to do the right thing. Every positive I could think of.

A week later, things are going great.

He’s less anxious. His work has improved. We’ve gotten along better. And he’s taking more responsibility for making good choices. Even choices he doesn’t like (like practicing his violin tonight because he wants a whole day of uninterrupted time on Saturday). 

And you know what? I feel better too. I can be motivated by reward as well.

Come to think of it, I dare say this applies to adults as well. 

Why We Crave the Food We Crave



“Once we have imprinted our minds with this association of pleasure and a specific sweet or salty indulgence, we have landed ourselves on a path of reoccurring cravings.  

It’s also important to recognize that food is a primal activity.  It has deep-seated meanings that may come from events in our childhood when a chocolate chip cookie was offered to you every time you were upset, for example.  Craving foods can also have metaphorical meaning.  For example, the expression “food is love.”  

So, you are probably asking yourself “How do I conquer these cravings?”  
– Allowing yourself a small portion of the craving culprit will give you the feeling of accomplishment and you’ll likely be satisfied without overindulge  as may be the case if you try ignoring it for too long.

– Adding a few M&M’s to your yogurt for example will cater to your craving in a less regretful manner.

– Eat 3 square meals a day at regular intervals.  If you put off eating lunch or breakfast, you may find yourself seeking a fast solution to hunger to get you through the rest of the work day and the cravings will kick in full strength.

– Keeping fruit on hand is a good alternative.  There are many fruits that offer the sweetness you are seeking.  A bite into a juicy apple may be all you need to get past the craving!

– Change things up!  If your routine includes a trip to the vending machine on the way to your desk, try packing a small Ziploc bag of trail mix instead. A smell sending you into a frenzy? Try leaving the room and taking a breath of fresh air or otherwise occupying yourself to take your mind off of the craving.”

The First Rule of Consulting: “No matter how much you try, you can’t stop people from sticking beans up their nose” (Jared Spool)

Jared has the best analogies to explain concepts.
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