Behavioural science: Your digital competitive advantage

The application of Behavioural Science techniques is becoming more and more popular for businesses and brands, so why are so few people using them? Understanding human behaviour is key when it comes to user journeys and building websites that convert.

Our second Brunch and Learn event, hosted last week, uncovered how an understanding of human behaviour can be used to improve your user’s experience across key moments in their journey, particularly at the point of conversion.  

Our guest speakers Beatrice Andrew, Behavioural Science Consultant at LAB Group and Thom Standen our Growth Marketing Consultant at Reflect Digital brought behavioural science to life in our exclusive webinar series. The interactive session discussed why using insights from behavioural science can improve a user’s experience and how to make this happen - through measuring CRO, testing its effectiveness and making incremental tweaks. 

The narrative for the session focused primarily on friction and how adding friction in the right places at the right time in a journey can increase memorability and engagement. 

Behavioural science and digital

Keynote speaker and behavioural science expert, Bea gave the audience an introduction into behavioural science, sharing the importance of understanding your users and implementing behavioural principles into your digital marketing strategy to create emotionally relevant experiences, campaigns, messaging and creative.

Bea explored the effectiveness of adding friction to a customer journey and how it can increase the memorability of a user’s experience with a brand.

Bea stated how

“increasing friction at the right moments can increase memorability”

and demonstrated how this switches our thinking from system 1 to system 2, a more conscious, effortful process and therefore more memorable. Although, it was reiterated that this only works if used correctly and that friction must be added in the right place at the right time in order for this to be effective. 

The MINDSPACE framework was shared with the audience, in relation to consumer behaviour and their motivations. Bea delved into four of the nine influencing factors; Incentives, norms, defaults and priming, exploring the ways in which we as ‘consumers’ are influenced when making a purchase choice. 

Bea shared some interesting examples of how priming can be used in marketing when it comes to decision making. She took the audience through the concept of choice architecture framing - a way of organising a range of product or service’s content and layout to spotlight a specific option as the best one, therefore nudging a consumer and influencing their choice. Another way to strengthen this process and aid decision making for consumers is to add a default selection when it comes to the user choosing the product.

Bea also touched on the ‘peak-end rule’ and the importance of framing your user’s experience in a certain way to ensure a consumer has a positive interaction during both the peak and end of the journey which will therefore increase their overall satisfaction with a brand. 

Midway through the webinar, our audience were split into two breakout rooms to run through some experiments with our speakers that demonstrated how priming and anchoring are very strong influences of behaviour when making a consumer choice. 

Testing and CRO

Growth marketing consultant and CRO expert Thom delivered a fantastic presentation on testing and conversion rate optimisation and how you can make this work for your business. 

Thom delved into the importance of really getting to know your audience before applying behavioural science techniques. He explained a key way of doing so is to analyse your customer profiles through persona discovery, using website data to understand your customer’s journeys and exploring feedback in order to understand who’s engaging with your brand and their level of satisfaction when interacting. 

Thom shared why building a feedback loop is absolutely crucial to continue improving and optimising your output

“it’s a continual process that shouldn’t stop. Keep testing and improving your digital strategy based on your results and research.” 

Test, test and test again. Thom shared the different methods of website experimentation such as a/b testing and split url testing and the immense benefits that come from these measurable changes such as:

  • Determining success
  • Understanding how your decisions contribute to your business goals
  • Avoid repeating mistakes
  • Increased ability to adjust campaigns as they run
  • Greater information on what triggers a positive response from your audience

He also explored the different variables that can be measured and optimised in a campaign. Although the possibilities are endless, the key elements to consider are:

  • Tone of voice
  • Functionality
  • Journeys
  • Imagery and Design
  • CTAs
  • Body copy
  • UX elements such as buttons and page structure

Bea and Thom then took the audience through various testing tools that can be used to measure a user’s experience. Including a biometric testing tool, which demonstrates a user's interaction with a website, exploring emotional engagement, facial expressions and eye movements. Some fascinating case studies were shared which illustrated how small tweaks such as moving small elements on a product page, created a much more positive user experience and increased conversion.

Psychology for messaging 

So, we already know that the right level of friction increases memorability. However, another key memory booster is the use of language. Understanding the motives behind the users can help marketers to use the right messaging to create a powerful experience that will stick in their minds. Thom explored the framework that LAB derived to understand whether the consumer has contextual, emotional or rational motives, and therefore how to approach the messaging. 

This understanding can be used to create compelling messaging with powerful hooks that are more likely to resonate with users and increase conversions. Thom showed an interesting study relating to a car crash, where the use of language (in this case faster verbs used) changed people’s perception of the incident, demonstrating the importance of carefully composing and testing your messaging. 

Key takeaways

  • Use behavioural science as a toolbox to test different ways of connecting with your audience  
     
  • Apply the right level of friction across the funnel, at key moments in the journey to make the best impact. 
     
  • Use appropriate amounts of friction based on the level of consideration required and the potential impact on the customer. 
     
  • Design your testing methodology to isolate any treatments to test and learn.
     
  • Digital is the perfect platform to optimise your strategy and play with different techniques. 
     
  • Use friction correctly to switch a consumer's thinking from system 1 to system 2, a more conscious, effortful process - therefore making it more memorable.
     
  • Build a feedback loop to continue improving and optimising your output, it’s a continual process that shouldn’t stop.
     
  • Test test test! Use a/b testing, split url testing and website experimentation to optimise your campaigns based on performance
     
  • Understand the motives behind your users to develop the right messaging to create a powerful and relevant experience for your users. 
     
  • Create compelling messaging with powerful hooks that are more likely to resonate with users and increase conversions
     
  • Remember, small changes can drive BIG results. Incremental tweaks to content and UX can have a significant impact on conversion rate, so don’t be afraid to play around.
     

Feel free to reach out to our expert team if you have any questions or challenges relating to Behavioural Science or CRO we’d love to help!

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MEET THE AUTHOR.

GEMMA KANE

Gemma’s manages the marketing strategy and communications for Reflect Digital. She’s always busy making sure our audience understands what the agency offer and that they hear about all the amazing work the team do. From events to our emails and website, you’ll find Gemma’s work anywhere you see the Reflect Digital logo. 

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