How badass are you trying to make them?
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash
All Creatives make assumptions about their readers and audience. Over 30 years of analyzing audiences in depth on the types of content, interfaces, tools, and systems that writers, designers, and developers launch into the world, I’ve found that these producers commonly overestimate their own importance and make life harder for their users. Most readers and users are not badasses and don’t want to be.
Consider this continuum about users’ willingness to be badasses:
A reader wants a quick synopsis of a subject. She may need a quick detail or want a short easy read. Or she is simply looking for momentary diversion. Here, keep it short, simple, and easily digestible.
The casual experiencer
This user has a deeper interest, will spend more time, and invest more effort — but not a lot more. He’s not an expert on the subject matter, but wants to be informed and confident. He needs more depth and detail than the skimmer.
This is the photographer who is passionate about his art. Or the professional illustrator who makes a living with what you teach or design. Give these masters all the Content and Every feature. Help them go deep and build mastery.
Three key lessons from this continuum of audience types:
- Don’t over-complicate your content, interface, message, or creations by overestimating your users’ sophistication and patience.
- Don’t over-dramatize your own importance in your audiences’ lives. Most people are far too busy, overwhelmed, and overstressed — especially these days.
- Don’t assume any of this. Find ways to interview your audience and test your creations with real people.
All outcomes in business — and in life — happen only within the experiences we encounter or provide. How badass is your audience? Observe their experiences to find out.
I’m Bob Berry — researcher, speaker, writer, innovator on the subject of compelling experience. Join my newsletter to follow the ways experiences transform life and business.
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