Made to Stick: Sticky Concepts, From Cover to Cover!

The Heath brothers present us with an amazing title that automatically becomes an essential part of the toolkit of any marketer or anyone seeking to influence others. Complementing very nicely the concepts introduced a while back by Gladwell in “The Tipping Point”, this title offers the reader a very easy-to-follow framework to help in the creation of sticky ideas.

Each chapter focuses on one of the six dimensions of the framework (SIMPLE, UNEXPECTED, CONCRETE, CREDIBLE, EMOTIONAL and STORIES) which you can easily remember through the acronym SUCCESs. They spice up each element with examples to illustrate the points they make, building up on the concepts covered earlier on and periodically inserting what they call clinics, which are great stopping points to see the new material put in practice.

The end-result is a sticky book that you will devour in no time (as powerful of a methodology they present, they don’t take too long to do it -thus applying their own method, making the content CONCRETE). It will also be a book that you will find yourself applying instantly to whatever idea you want to influence others about, whether you are presenting in person to an audience of investors or to over the TV in the form of a commercial.

Make sure to get your copy of “Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die” -you will thank me for it!

And if you already read the book and you want more stuff from “Made To Stick”, make sure to visit the authors’ blog at http://www.madetostick.com/blog/.

About FAQs and User Experience

I’ve been reading in the past couple of days an excellent little book from 2002 called The Elements of User Experience, written by Jesse James Garrett, President and founder of Adaptive Path.

One of the many things he wrote in there that I found interesting was this:

More often than not, FAQs neglect the “frequently” part of the equation, offering instead answers to whatever questions the content provider could think of to satisfy the FAQ requirement.

So true! It made me consider how many of the FAQs I have on the site that I manage I could do away with, without doing any harm.

For an example of a fine job done with FAQs, see what the folks over at del.icio.us did with their support page. Their top three questions listed at the top, and the rest of the page geared toward fielding people’s questions via a form, and channeling traffic to less frequently asked questions on a different page. Smart! User-centered design at work.

Pecha Kucha Presentations

No, it’s not an insult! Pecha Kucha is a presentation format introduced a few years ago in the Architecture world, which consists of a slide show of 20 images, each lasting 20 seconds, for a total (strict) presentation duration of 6 minutes 40 seconds.

Here’s a video of a Pecha Kucha presentation at reboot 8.0 in Copenhagen, Denmark, last year, so you can see how it “feels” like:

You can read more about Pecha Kucha in Wikipedia, and if you are interested, there may be a Pecha Kucha night coming soon to a city near you…

P.S. Thanks to Robert Hoekman’s Kaizen Software Manifesto for shedding light on this otherwise completely obscure concept.