At Code we use PET (persuasion, emotion & trust) in most of the projects we carry out. Oglivy’s new campaign for Expedia makes great use of a few techniques using those all to familiar three letter airport tags.
The design makes good use of instantly recognisable visuals to create an emotional response and speed up response time.
The advert uses images and words that users associate with a specific concept, travel.
The adverts tell a story that includes the users. They use words that suggest a number of different narratives that we are all familiar with whether this is humorous situation, asking our parents for money or missing a loved one.
The advert places a small nudge at the end of the page stating “stop wishing, start searching”. This is a nice reminder that the user should search for a holiday on Expedia.
Is changing peoples behaviour for the better as simple as making things fun?, Volkswagen seem to think so, they call it fun theory. The fun theory campaign, is an initiative to get people to change their behaviours, by allowing them to see how acting responsibly can be fun.
Volkswagen ran a competition which encouraged users to upload their own applications of the fun theory on thefuntheory.com. There are loads of great ideas, but a particular favourite of mine is ‘The Speed Camera Lottery‘. The idea is to not only capture people who speed on camera, but also the people who stick to the speed limit.
People who keep to the speed limit would be entered in to a lottery, and here’s the best bit, the winning pot would come from the people who were caught speeding.
As far as I can see the whole basis of fun theory is the work of B.F Skinner and his theory of operant conditioning. In a nut shell operant conditioning is a technique used to modify behaviour by reinforcing desired behaviors, and ignoring or punishing undesired behaviours.
SimplyPsychology.org notes that Skinner identified three different types of responses that can follow behaviour.
Neutral Operants: responses from the environment that neither increase nor decrease the probability of a behaviour being repeated.
Reinforcers: Responses from the environment that increase probability of a behaviour being repeated. The can either be positive or negative.
Punishers: Response from the environment that decrease the likelihood of a behaviour being repeated. Punishment weakens behaviour.
Reinforces can be both negative and positive. Skinner showed that in situations that reflect positive reinforcement, a response or behavior is strengthened by the addition of something, such as praise or a direct reward. Universal Principles of design gives the example of pulling a lever on a slot machine. This results in positive visual and auditory feedback, and a possible monitory reward. In the case of fun theory the reward is fun.
Here is another really nice example of the fun theory, the play seat belt
For me the question would be are we using operant conditioning effectively. Punishment is an effective way to rapidly extinguish a behaviour, but this is damaging to moral. We seem to be so focussed on punishment for negative behavior, that we don’t think about increasing positive behaviour.
The Fun Theory does exactly this, it rewards people for doing something good, it makes doing something good, fun, in an attempt to increase the probability of a behaviour being repeated.
I really like being outside and I really like colour, so I thought why not create a little series of blog post exploring colour combinations that occur natural in nature.
Using the colour picker in Adobe I picked out the basic colours from the picture. From this I used a square colour scheme (all four colours split evenly on the colour wheel) to create a couple of colour combinations.
Colour Combination Two
Colour Combination Two (with brown)
These colour combinations tend to work best if you let one colour be dominant. You also need to consider the balance between warm and cool colours.
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As you may know I find desire paths quite interesting from a user experience point of view. I came across this when I was out for my lunch time walk the other day. The original path arches round and people have just decided to walk across the grass in a straight line. It must save a matter of seconds, but it shows that people want to make their daily activities as easy as possible.
Each week I try and add some images of ‘thoughtless acts‘ to my site. I recently brought a new book which wouldn’t stay open. This was pretty annoying when trying to read hands free. The solution was pretty simple in the end.
I would probably put this down as ‘adapting’. This is where we alter the purpose of an object to meet our objectives.
My name is Drew Hajduk, I am a user experience designer with 4+ years design experience working at Code Computerlove in Manchester. I started this site as encouragement to observe, reflect and process the world around me with my creative glasses on and to serve as a record of my work.