Feedback is interactivity too

In the excitement about the way in which interactivity has gone mainstream (had we never done interactivity before the present decade?) its easy to forget that to modify human behaviour you don't  always need to have dialogue or even a response from the customer. The limitations of dialogue become very evident when only a minority have the time or the inclination to respond – so marketers and policymakers are left scratching their heads trying to work out what the silent majority of visitors and browsers want. And how to prod them into activity.

The great thing about giving people information that is relevant to them is that it will influence their behaviour whether they like it or not. Last month I blogged about the Owl - which instantly made us aware of our electricity consumption costs minute by minute. Not intrusive. But very effective. This morning I am confronted with an interactive map of 10 years of road fatalities. Which I can search by postcode or police authority. And which shows me who died where. Within a few hundred yards of where I live. Each one is a fragment of a story, a personal tragedy. And its relevant to me because I drive on these roads. Dialogue is unnecessary. Designers should consider the feedback loop far more than they do. It certainly is a lot leaner solution than asking the customer to join a conversation.



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