Web navigation for those who want to cut to the chase

A friend sent me this Marketing Sherpa article about a great web design approach: Build in a button for those Type A folks who just want the facts.

Type A screen capture from an ad agency web siteIt’s clever idea. The article has links to the site, which is for an ad agency. I suggest you give it a look.

The idea does bring up a greater point: Are you identifying your target audience precisely enough to match their varying browsing styles and needs? Doing so isn’t all that far-fetched.

I’m a big advocate of persuasion architecture, which is a term coined by Brian and Jeffrey Eisenberg of Future Now. It’s a process by which you segment the universe of customers and prospects visiting your site. Segmentation is by persona — which the brothers define as general personality archetypes. These are stereotypes, if you will, for how specific consumers feel about your site’s products or services. 

It all sounds very squishy, and frankly I do find it a little too high-minded sometimes. I’m more of the behavioral type. Generalizing on anything other than past actions can sometimes lead you in circles.

But I am nonetheless deeply indebted to the Eisenberg brothers for taking this idea and extending it to the practice of building pages that contain navigation and content unique for that persona. In other words, if you sell online home security products, and know that a worried single parent is a key persona type, be sure you address this person’s many questions and fears in a systematic way … and also, offer little other navigation or content along that funnel.

The object of persuasion architecture is to move people in an orderly fashion through their decision-making steps, one click at a time. The prize: To unfailingly lead consumers to a sale.

Persuasion architecture is a much-needed breath of fresh air. For the right site, I can see it rewarding Type A people for identifying themselves. And in doing so, rewarding the site owner with a higher sales conversion rate.

2 Replies to “Web navigation for those who want to cut to the chase”

  1. Hello Jeff Re: hypervideo

    Yes you wait for a bus then all three come at once.

    The telephone, [traffic light, gramaphone] analogy is an apt one.

    I first tried hyper drilling on an interactive documentary 5 years ago. We were then working on 56k modems so could only really work with pics and sound http://www.viewmagazine.tv/thefamily.html.

    My MD then ( ex saatchi and saatchi head of TV Jon Staton) thought we were on to something but it turned out we were too early.

    Recently it seems to have caught on and I’ll be providing a number of hypervideo links to features I’m developing such as:

    * Trust me I’m a journalist
    You’re right though about the fortunes of marketers, where we can see object
    of our desire and click to them. Where in the future embedded wifi algorithims
    will enable us to purchase items from a cinema screen. Now that truly would be
    the outernet



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