Tuesday, September 10, 2019

The Greatest Lesson Ever Taught

You should be charged $145,000 to read the following. I'm not even kidding. It teaches virtually everything you need to know about interface, web design, consumer behavior, and customer friction; the stuff that really matters in commercial enterprise.

Earlier this year I bought a cover for my second car, an old Miata, to keep the birds from crapping all over it. It takes just one minute to easily uncover the car, and another minute to easily replace the cover after I get home.

I have not driven the car once since.

See also "Filtering the Zombie Army"


Richard Stanford said...

This is very true, and a lesson that it seems we have to learn separately in all facets of life.

A big part of my day job over the last 15 years has been helping clients - mostly NPOs - raise money online. We found a direct (inverse) relationship between the number of questions they asked on a donation form and the number of people who'd give money.

Its astonishing how hard its been to try to teach people that less is more, and how stubborn they are even when we can show through A/B testing that asking someone what their favorite color is (or whatever) literally costs them $Xk per week.

The real question though, now that you've had this realization, is: are you now going to throw away the cover or sell the car?

ps: Miatas are super fun.

Jim Leff said...

The fact that Miatas are super fun (i.e. there's considerable pull opposing the push of additional overhead) only makes it weirder.

What I'll do is what I always do when I understand the situation enough not to be curiously captivated while remaining too ambivalent to manage to resolve it: I will paralyze in status quo, feeling more and more nauseously uncomfortable about the whole thing.

Understanding's not enough.

Display Name said...

But but frame rot Jim! How much for the Miata? Is it stick? If you don't drive it up and down the driveway once in awhile it will die. Ulp.

Jim Leff said...

Its astonishing how hard its been to try to teach people that less is more

Feel free to steal my story!

I just used it on a friend who can't understand why his web site's traffic died when he moved the "meat" of the site to an area requiring an easy extra click to access. And it worked (I think).

Jim Leff said...

Stick, of course! And not for sale! I love the Miata! Love driving it! I just don't, that's all....

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