More cash to feed your brain

MoneyYou are already thinking about money. No I’m not a mind reader, but I’m a thought implanter. I’ve deliberately started you thinking that this article is about money. Two things have achieved that – the word cash in the headline and the picture of dollar bills.

Psychologically, this is called “priming”. You can put people in the right frame of mind for doing things by using priming techniques. Often, it’s not as blatant and obvious as what I have done here. For instance in some recent research on priming, students were given some biscuits to eat. When the room in which they ate the biscuits contained a citrus smell, of the kind used in household cleaning fluids, the students cleared up their crumbs. When no smell was present, the did not tidy up. This experiment suggests that we can be primed for activity by smell alone.

Other psychological studies of priming have shown that images, sounds and words can provide a subconscious signal to behavioural change. So how can you use this in your Internet business?

Firstly, think about the actions you want your readers to take. For instance, if your product you are selling makes them feel more relaxed, have images of relaxed people, rather than your product. If you want them to share your blog in places like Digg or in other social network, using words in your headlines and text that evoke a sense of sharing, such as “friendly” or “support”.

Advertisers often using priming techniques – cars are generally filmed in exotic or exciting locations. The images give you a sense of a greater drama than is possible with photographing a car stuck in a motorway jam – the most likely place you’ll be in it when you buy it! That greater positive feeling helps the car company sell to you as you are already primed to want the car.

Online you can use images and video clips to prime your audience to make it more likely they’ll do what you would want them to do. However, this new research suggests priming also comes in other ways. So don’t neglect the words you use – particularly if they can evoke a sense of smell. Picture are powerful, but the Internet is largely a word-based medium; so get those priming words right and your web site will succeed.

Like this article?

Share on twitter
Share on Twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on Linkdin
Share on facebook
Share on Facebook
Share on email
Share via email

Other posts that might be of interest

Internet Psychology

Is your brain back to front?

British businesses will spend this weekend on tenterhooks as they wait for Monday’s announcement from the Government about the ending of lockdowns. For the past couple of weeks, the mutterings from 10 Downing Street suggest

Read More »
Internet Psychology

Can you do boring tasks?

Last week, not far from the M25 in Buckinghamshire, the biggest-ever boring machine in the UK started its slow churn through the Chiltern hills to dig a tunnel for the HS2 rail system. It will

Read More »
Fence painting
Online Business

When did you last paint your garden fence?

If you are a “big change” business, then you are like my garden fence. Leaving it unpainted for so long has created much more work, at a higher cost, than if it had been tended to every year. Ignoring reviews of your online activity for long periods also means you make more work for yourself and raise your costs.

Read More »