Webstock - Kathy Sierra's workshop

Me and new friends doing an excersise at Kathy Sierra's Workshop To kick Webstock off, I went along to Kathy Sierra's Workshop - Creating Passionate Users. It was SO good that afterwards I ran to the office to tell the others all about it!! It is really exciting for me cause I now I have some really cool ideas of stuff we can do with Go Fetch! and make it better for people who register and use it. There was so much stuff that I learnt, and there is no way I could cover it all here, but here are some key cool things:

  1. People are passionate about things in their lives, and this is characterised by certain behaviour. But we can also use this in a backwards way to spark people's interest in products/services and to keep their interest up.
  2. For people to be interested and attracted to something there needs to be a brain-level reaction. Our brains react and pay attention to things that are:
    • Novel - something strange, different, unique.
    • Beautiful
    • Cute and innocent
    • Funny
    • Faces and facial expressions - and these don't need to be human faces it can be animals or drawings
    • Unresolved - things that make you go *huh?!*
    • Sexy
    • Scary
  3. If things are written in conversational tone rather than facts and information then people pay attention much better.
  4. Animation - we take notice of moving things and tonal changes. So this should only be used well to draw attention to a specific thing on the page.
  5. So now we have people's attention, we need to retain it by giving them a compelling picture to aim towards ("That looks cool, yeah I want to do that!") and a way to get to it, an easy way to get started.
  6. We love learning and understanding, so there needs to be a way for people to learn more and more about what they are aiming towards. Also to keep learning, the tool or site needs to be very unobtrusive so that people don't have to learn to use the tool, but instead focus on achieving their goal.
  7. Games are really good at keeping people motivated by providing levels - and the same idea can be applied to our tools. They don't need to be as specific as levels, but people are continuously motived if they feel they have achieved something and are more able or get some reward afterwards.
  8. If people feel they are part of a bigger picture or meaning then they will be more enthusatic. E.g. Coldplay and Fair Trade. And people will want to and encourage others to do things like wear the Fair Trade braclet or t-shirts.
  9. Community is really important -for people to be able to interact, comment or have some part with others going through the same things.
  10. And of course the most important bit of all, is that it isn't about us webdesigners, or about the tools that we are trying to sell, it is about how the people using the tool feel.