What do visitors to your website really want?

We human beings are wonderfully distractable. One second we’re working away at our desk, next second we’re feverishly searching Google for the name of that actress who played opposite what’s-his-name in that movie about the stuff…

Today we’re obsessing over LCD TVs, and tomorrow we’re checking out weathersealing. Day after that, scented candles. We lurch from desire to desire with no predictability, it seems.

Well, the externals of what we’re searching for may change, but the essence of the search remains constant, and has done so for tens of thousands of years.

After all, Google is a new method, but search has been the human pastime since we got those fabulous opposable thumbs. What do we do all day? We walk around trying to get stuff. More stuff, better stuff, newer stuff, bigger stuff, smaller stuff, cooler stuff, more environmentally friendly stuff; it’s all stuff. And not just material stuff; emotional stuff as well: experiences, feelings, and so on.

Why are we so programmed to search and collect? Because we all want the same thing: to feel good about ourselves.

And here’s the thing: we’ll give almost anything to get there. We’ll submit to peer pressure, eat junk food, listen to pounding music, spend more than we can afford on luxuries and trinkets, and put others down.

So no matter what keyword your visitor searched to find your site, they want to feel good about themselves. They want to feel clever, in control, in the know, and special.

If you can make your visitors feel good, you’ve already done 90% of the sales job.

The following 16-minute video is just fabulous. A great story, funny and sweet and inspiring. And a wonderful reminder of the one motivation that underlies all our other ones. Enjoy!

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4 Comments. Leave a comment or send a Trackback.
  1. #1 • Mike Moore said on December 30 2008:

    Thanks for this post. The “Validation” flick made my day and gave me a couple of things to think about – both business and personal.

  2. #2 • Richard Coldman said on December 30 2008:

    Thought provoking and fun – a great combination. We all know this stuff really, so why do we forget it so easily? Thanks!

  3. #3 • Dan Perach said on January 15 2009:

    This video marks my 2009 New Year, thanks.

  4. #4 • Gemma Laming said on July 2 2011:

    Howie, that was lovely!