This week my publications class read in Aaron Walter’s book, “Designing for Emotion,” about designing with emotional engagement. This chapter was very informative. The top three keys I took away was: surprise, anticipate and prime. What does this mean?
Well with any type of design you was your audience to be able to connect with it so your probably have added some personality to it. Now it is time to surprise your audience. It is very interesting that Walter teaches this because I think most would agree that surprises keep you wanting to come back for more to see what else is in store. It is simply very hard to resist when the surprise was pleasant.
Anticipation can be a very hard concept to apply. I think you should anticipate once you know what your audience likes, but it is very important to be careful about what you try to add to a website. Twitter is a good example of this. The makers of twitter decided there needed to be a new interface in hopes of gaining a new audience and to keep those who were already users interested. The makers made a big leap by presenting a new interface but continued to give the audience a chance to keep the old interface unlike its competitor Facebook, which makes users change to the new interface designs. I think that people respond better when given a choice and it somewhat keeps people wanting to use your services when they know they can create it however they want it.
Finally priming is when we send positive emotional experiences and people can deeply engage with it. Walter gave a great example of the mail chimp site. He said that mail chimp added the speech to the chimp and people like it because it was out of the ordinary. He compared this to the old Microsoft Word paperclip, Clippy, who would ask users midway trough their document if they needed help and etc. That got really old and mail chimp wanted their comments to be different were it was more helpful than annoying. This idea was so great, Walter said many people tweeted about it and mail chimp gained exposure because of its talking chimp.
One thing that I totally agree with it the use of open interaction. The gaming world is really capitalizing off of it because people like to be able to create their own fantasies rather than have a closed interaction that lays everything out for you. What I did not agree with was when Walter said that if you have a “when you create emotionally engaging experiences, a marketing budget is no longer necessary.” I think it’s important to have that back-up plan just in case. What if your audience doesn’t like a new step that you’ve taken and your company starts to get less attention. You have to figure out a new way to engage.
Overall this was a very interesting chapter and I think it is worth the read if you’re interested in learning about how to emotionally engage with your audiences.
Originally posted at Tori Beechum - PR Pubs
Chapter 4: Emotional Engagement
One of the first things the author mentions is that there are some instances that create lasting impressions. Good or bad. I had never really thought about was the impact that surprise has on our emotions. I could relate to the author when he mentioned the hearing-a-song-on-the-radio example, because I always put my iPod on shuffle when I’m listening to it, but I never thought about the “surprise” impact. Nor did I consider using that same appeal when designing.
The next things the author brings up is that the anticipation is important as well. Although, I agree that this creates a sense of excitement, I’m not sure I understand how the author means to use it in design for websites…maybe Twitter could pull it off, but it’s also a one of the most popular website of the time. That’s the only thing I would disagree with.
I like that the author describes the natural reactions to these surprises and how to use them to the designers advantage without “deceiving” or “tricking” the viewer. Something I also liked was–later on–when the author suggests saying “you may” instead of “you must”. I know from experience that if people are forced to change, they will react negatively.
I also thought it was comforting to hear that you won’t always get it right the first couple times, but that it’s ok. “When you hit your mark, the benefits are big.”
Originally posted at Brought to you by Brooke
The title of chapter 4 is Emotional Engagement. This chapter suitably deals with engaging an audience on an emotional level. Walter discussed how emotions appeal to our senses of memory and recognition by using surprises and joy or delight. Whenever something is surprising to a viewer or user, they are more likely to remember it. The Photojojo website ‘Do Not Pull’ lever is a great example of making a memorable impression on the user by surprising them.
Chapter 4 also touches on priming. Priming is when a viewer or user is exposed to a stimulus designed to influence their view of a different stimulus. Walter used the example of Twitter’s “New Twitter” redesign and how they sought to change user perceptions of it. They did this by revealing a special sneak peak of the new design, which sparked a great deal of discussion in and of itself, and then permitting use to only certain users. This raised anticipation of “New Twitter” to a fever pitch.
Using emotion to appeal to users as described by chapter 4 sounds like a very effective way to convey a message and make it stick. I am excited to work emotional appeal into my future designs.
Originally posted at Nick Edwards
In Chapter 4 of Designing for Emotion by Aarron Walter, it talks about having emotional engagement and how we must constantly surprise our audience. I completely agree. We as designers need to remember that our audience has a short attention span and we must surprise our audience to keep their attention.
The one thing that I disagree with is Wufoo’s approach with handwritten letters. I agree that a caring, handwritten note creates brand loyalty, but I think this only works if your target audience and customers are repeat customers. Most people go to a website to order something, and never return because they got what they needed. In this case, if a customer received a letter from the company, I would imagine that the letter would be thrown in the garbage with the junk mail. I do on the other hand, believe that it could be an amazing tool for those companies with already loyal customers. If your buyers have visited before, I think that a handwritten note could only help your customer see the human side of your company so I think it would work.
Originally posted at Claire White
This was a very informative chapter overall and really got me thinking of different ways to get in touch with people’s emotions. Given that people’s attention is very hard to keep in this day and age, designers have a very small amount of time to catch the viewer’s eye.
The chapter broke down emotion very well into several components that were then explained. I found this a very good way of explaining everything. Surprise was the first aspect gone over and then anticipation was discussed. It was also a very interesting way to present things and made it very understandable.
I wouldn’t change anything about the chapter. It was written in a clear concise manner that was also interesting. The examples that were given were so unique and perfect for what he was talking about that it made the read very engaging. It was good to keep a consistent theme as well like when the author talked about Mailchimp again.
I really liked the way he talked about surprise and anticipation and how we as human beings have emotion rush to us when we are surprised or build up when we feel anticipation. As designers we have to find a way to key on that. I also enjoy how the chapter finishes by basically saying there is no for sure formula to captivate emotion. We have to figure out specifics about our audience and tailor the specific messages toward that.
Originally posted at Spenser Hicks's Blog
In Chapter 4 of “Designing for Emotion”, Aarron Walter discusses the topic of using our design persona from the last chapter and incorporating it with building interaction patterns as well as creating lasting memories in the minds of our audience. Personally, I had never thought about important the aspect of surprise is in our lives. I really liked the statement Walter writes saying, “Surprise amplifies our emotional response,” (Walter 49). If we know something is coming, it completely changes our outlook on the situation. This idea definitely made me think and realize how important this aspect is in design.
However, in this chapter I questioned one opinion about the changes of Twitter. Although I agree with the fact that many people react negatively to social media whenever it changes its appearance, I do not agree with keeping the old version on the social media site. If the social media site is eventually going to make the users change to the new version, then everyone should have to change at the same time. Although this may give the site negative feedback in the beginning, the uproar will eventually die down and some people may even like the new version better. In the end, people will like the new version and it will become the norm, until users have to deal with new updates again.
Something I have recently noticed and enjoy about this book is how everything Walter says is true and applies to Public Relations. For example, when he mentions that our goal is not to trick the public and “Your audience will catch on to your game and not trust your brand if you are deceitful,” this is extremely relevant to our field of study (Walter 49). In addition, I have always liked learning about new things, and this chapter is chalk full of them, such as Photojojo and Wufoo. I had never heard of these before, so it was interesting to read about them.
Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student
The fourth chapter in the Designing for Emotion book discusses the emotional engagement in websites.
The author, Aarron Walter, discusses the difference between “you may…” and “you must…” in regards to websites such as Facebook or Twitter changing their interface. Twitter did something which was remarkable and really great to keep satisfaction amongst its users, it allowed them to choose if and when they wanted to switch over to the new interface. Facebook did not give its users that luxury. I remember when Facebook switched over to the Timeline feature, I did not like the change because it was so dramatically different from the interface before it. I believe they could have made that transition easier for its users to accept and get used to. Maybe they could have previewed it for everyone to see before they forced it upon their users. Also, Facebook ma have realized that they wouldn’t lose any users, and if they did it would be insignificant amount, with the quick change because many people rely on Facebook to stay connected with their friends and families, that Facebook didn’t need to worry about softening the blow of the transition. Whatever their reason for a quick change, I believe Twitters change was more graceful and definitely more widely accepted by its users.
Walter goes on to discuss how apps use anticipation in their favor to retain customer satisfaction. He talks about how the app Groupon uses this feature when they send out daily emails to subscribers with their new discounts. Personally after using the app myself, I found those emails to be more of a nuisance and I ended up deleting the app and sending their emails to span. Anticipation is great when used right, I don’t believe a daily email (or several daily emails) is the best way to go to entice anticipation in users.
Overall though, this book provides great tips on creating successful websites.
Originally posted at Grace Vojvoda
I was most interested in the section of this chapter that dealt with the personal touch. Getting a had written letter has always been a delight for people but the more communication become digital, the more that personal touch will matter.
It almost seems like getting something personalized means more now just because it is so rare. To get something personal from a digital source like Wufoo is particularly striking. The irony of it almost strengthens the impact.
In the sports world it would be great if you could track the users on your site and email list who most interact with your communications, or maybe who donate the most money or buy the most tickets and write them a note like the one Wufoo sent out. Getting something like that from the athletic director or a coach would mean a lot to a fan and cement the loyalty of an already valuable user.
The chapter also sent a lot of time discussing the mail chimp mascot and it occurred to me that athletic departments are missing out on a chance to use their mascots in a similar way. OU could use their pony mascot in a similar way to mail chimp to personalize and humorize peoples’ interactions on the site. I would imagine they could get similar reactions that mailchimp got. They may even get more positive responses because people are way more emotionally tied their favorite sports teams than they are to a web site. This is definitely an idea that I am going to hang onto for the future.
Originally posted at Wes Moody PR Publications
This chapter in Aaron Walter’s Designing for Emotion has all to do with how to engage the audience emotionally. I found this chapter very interesting because it talk about a way to think about the designs you create in a new way. In this chapter Walter talks about the emotion or surprise or delight as useful tool to make your designs more memorable for the user. When a user finds something by surprise they connect that positively to what they are using. He used the example of Photojojo’s website to show this. On this website there is a lever that says “Do not pull,” which of course makes the user want to click on it and then it shows the description of whatever product they are looking at. I found this so clever! The use of reverse psychology and creativity turned something that could have just been typed to the side of the picture into something memorable.
Another thing this chapter talked about was priming, which is when a person is exposed to a stimulus that in turn shapes their response to another stimulus. The example he used was when Twitter was about to launch the redesign of the “New Twitter” and how they went about changing their users perceptions of the changes. First the creative director gave a sneak peak of the new design, which in turned sparked a lot of conversation. Then when the design was released only certain users had the ability to use it first, which created even more anticipation for the users who didn’t have it yet.
I am looking forward to learning how to incorporated both emotional engagement in my designs and how to prime my audience to be as enthusiastic about my designs as I am. I know it will take work and some failures like it says in the book. But with time I hope to be as creative and successful as the examples in this chapter.
Originally posted at Mary Morton- PR Publications Course
I have never thought about how much a surprise can trigger’s somebody’s engagement. The first example used in the chapter was hearing your favorite song on the radio. I get so excited when my favorite song comes on, because it is a nice surprise. It is so much more exciting than when you play it on your own when listening to your iPod. This chapter uses Photojojo as another great example of surprise that engages customers. I will be the first to admit that I would certainly get hooked into buying more items because of the surprise features on their website. Anything with surprise and excitement will immediately catch my attention.
When the chapter discusses the difference between Twitter’s layout changes and Facebook’s there was one thing I slightly disagreed with. Although I do believe people like to have the option to change layouts on their own, it works quicker to force it upon people like Facebook does. Yes, some people will react negatively to it, but they will eventually get used to it. With Twitter, there may be some people who never work up the courage to change layouts, and they are forever behind with updates.
This chapter was one of my favorites so far. I loved the examples it gave on how to attract the customer and make them feel special. I have never thought about using surprise, delight and anticipation in such strategic ways. As a PR professional, giving one’s brand a personality is so important. This is something I will always remember once I get out of college and starting putting these strategies into play.
Originally posted at Taylor Jurica- Gaylord Journalism Student