If you’re like me, when you get into a lift (or elevator if you’re American) you have to stop and think (perhaps only for a second) which button to press to open the doors, and which to close.
The problem is the triangle symbol isn’t as intuitive as a simple arrow. I always think the “close door” sign looks more like the HSBC logo!
This is an example of design taking precedence over “ease of use”. We often see this in websites – sexy design wins over user functionality.
Symbols facilitate understanding of the world in which we live, thus serving as the grounds upon which we make judgements.
In sales, if your customer has to decode your message, you are adding an extra barrier to winning their business. Research has shown that buying decisions are made by the emotional brain. So if your customer has to stop and think to understand your message, you are diverting their attention from the emotional brain (limbic system) to the logical brain (pre-frontal cortex), causing them to think rather than act.
For me more intuitive signs would be:
We don’t need to think about arrows; their meaning is innate within us.
Similarly, with your written sales messages, the simpler the better
We might hear a salesperson describing their technical product as
Nothing about this is intuitive. We have to stop and think about every word, which is taxing for the buyer, and diminishes the likelihood of a successful sale.
Far better to say:
“It grows with your business needs”
This language doesn’t require us to engage our pre-frontal cortex to understand it; the meaning is directly and instantly available from our limbic system (emotional brain). The result is that your customer is for more likely to engage with you.
Put another way, why have a policeman in an automobile when a cop in car will do?!
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