Experience

Prospect Theory

A loss hurts more than an equal gain feels good

Certainty Effect

We crave clarity over chance and make costly sacrifices to get it

Feedback Loops

We look for information that provides clarity on our actions

Autonomy Bias

We have a deep-seated need to control our situations

Surprise Effect

We respond well to positive, unexpected, personal gestures

Humor Effect

We’re more motivated by and remember things that make us laugh

Spacing Effect

We remember things better when repeated over time and across environments

Peak-End Rule

We remember an experience by its peaks and how it ended

Fast & Slow Thinking

We take knee-jerk spontaneous decisions that can cause regretful damage

Chunking

We process information better when put into small groups

Hedonic Adaptation

We feel less joy for a gain and discomfort for a loss as time goes by

Choice-Supportive Bias

We recall more of the positives of our choices over any negatives

Present Bias

What we want now is often the opposite of what we aspire to in the future

Delay Discounting

We choose smaller, more immediate rewards over greater ones that we need to wait for

Temptation Bundling

We're more likely to do the hard stuff when coupled with the pleasant

Biophilia Effect

We're drawn to living things and become stressed if too detached from them

Aggregation Effect

Negative experiences feel less painful overall when they’re bundled together

Segregation Effect

Positive experiences feel better overall when we spread them out

Pairings

Experience

Encourage product migration by creating parallel experiences

If you're undergoing a significant version change in the product or system your users work with, run the current and new versions in parallel for a while.

Default to the current, offering low risk, bite-size ways to dip into and explore the new version.

Be clear about the date at which the user will be defaulted to the new version.

Provide ample time for incremental exploration (measured in months, subject to the size of the change). Once the user has been defaulted to the new, maintain provision of access to the old for a time, to increase certainty further.

Finally, provide a clear date by which the old will no longer be accessed.

What significant systematic changes are you anticipating for your users? Where can you reassure them with a smooth migration process that reduces stress and, ideally, reinforces the value of the new?

Experience

Provide short, clear summaries for long, complex information

Written content that is vast in length has the capacity to overwhelm us. Recognise that even our most devoted readers are time-poor, seeking to extract meaning and learnings from our work with as little effort as possible.

Make it easy for them to get the key points.

Magazines Harvard Business Review and Delayed Gratification do this well, offering distilled summaries of long-form content for the time-poor.

Where can you provide bold, identifiable summaries of your key points? The longer or more dense the content, the more this is necessary.

Experience

Create positive, shareable peak-ends

Given that we're disproportionately sensitive and have a better recall of the peaks and ends of experiences, unexpected acts of kindness or positive moments are more likely to be shared on social media with friends.

Where can you add a positive ending that really taps in to a customer's own emotional aims, making them feel understood or special? These moments are gold and we'll share them with the world...

Experience

Avoid overwhelming new people by spacing info over time

When being onboarded to a new product or company, we're at great risk of being overwhelmed by all the many new things to learn.

Ask yourself: what is fundamental for now, and how might you spread out subsequent knowledge over time? As well as anything new, consider using the Spacing Effect to remind of what has already been learned, to reinforce it in memory and highlight progress.

Experience

Reveal product secrets long after first use

Common wisdom suggests you should provide as much value within the first few engagements with your product. However, people will eventually adapt to its merits.

Where can you bury hidden joys, perhaps unlocked after a certain timeframe or number of uses, to foster a deeper connection and renewed sense of wonder with your product?

Experience

Offset pain numbness with exponential feedback loops

Our discomfort for losses wanes as they mount, as we become desensitised to pain. Therefore, we're at much greater risk of not taking appropriate action and, for instance, staying in debt. This benefits nobody.

How might you build on existing feedback loops that warn of creeping, dangerous behaviour?

How might these grow dramatically according to certain threshold levels? Any desensitisation needs to be counter-balanced with an exponentially serious warning system of feedback to prevent undue damage.

Experience

Prospect Theory

A loss hurts more than an equal gain feels good

Certainty Effect

We crave clarity over chance and make costly sacrifices to get it

Feedback Loops

We look for information that provides clarity on our actions

Autonomy Bias

We have a deep-seated need to control our situations

Surprise Effect

We respond well to positive, unexpected, personal gestures

Humor Effect

We’re more motivated by and remember things that make us laugh

Spacing Effect

We remember things better when repeated over time and across environments

Peak-End Rule

We remember an experience by its peaks and how it ended

Fast & Slow Thinking

We take knee-jerk spontaneous decisions that can cause regretful damage

Chunking

We process information better when put into small groups

Hedonic Adaptation

We feel less joy for a gain and discomfort for a loss as time goes by

Choice-Supportive Bias

We recall more of the positives of our choices over any negatives

Present Bias

What we want now is often the opposite of what we aspire to in the future

Delay Discounting

We choose smaller, more immediate rewards over greater ones that we need to wait for

Temptation Bundling

We're more likely to do the hard stuff when coupled with the pleasant

Biophilia Effect

We're drawn to living things and become stressed if too detached from them

Aggregation Effect

Negative experiences feel less painful overall when they’re bundled together

Segregation Effect

Positive experiences feel better overall when we spread them out