1. Menus that Make You Spend More
Recently, I found a couple of interesting articles on the science of influencing customers' choices through graphic design. Experts in this area claim that a menu redesign can increase a restaurant's profits substantially.
The way prices are listed is very important. "This is the No. 1 thing that most restaurants get wrong"... "If all the prices are aligned on the right, then I can look down the list and order the cheapest thing." It's better to have the digits and dollar signs discreetly tagged on at the end of each food description. That way, the customer's appetite for honey-glazed pork will be whetted before he sees its cost.
--Time Magazine: The Menu Magician
2. 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive
Alex Moskalyuk reprises all 50 chapters of the book Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive, many of which have marketing implications.
Asking for little goes a long way. Researchers went door-to-door asking for American Cancer Society donations. Group A just asked for a donation, group B ended their spiel with “even a penny would help”. Results? 28.6% response rate for Group A vs. 50% response for Group B.
3. Why You've Gotta Catch'em All
Why are people so addicted to games like Pokemon, Mafia Wars, and World of Warcraft? Gamasutra considers the appeal of item collecting and achievement hoarding.
4. The Psychology of Being Scammed
What makes people fall for scams? Mind Hacks blog discussed a recent report which lists some obvious factors: perception of scarcity, appeals to trust and authority, inducing behavioral committment, etc.-- tactics one often sees in marketing.
Even more interesting are the findings that are counter-intuitive:
- many people who are scammed know a great deal about the subject of the scam (say, financial investing)
- they tend to put more cognitive effort into investigating the scam than non-victims.
So, it's not just the ignorant or the careless who can be manipulated!