One might wonder why it is important to evoke a reader’s curiosity with a web site design, much less other advertising materials. What does your viewer’s imagination have to do with the service or products your business sells?
Creativity Feeds Viewer Curiosity
Curiosity and creativity go hand in hand in our information age. At the click of a mouse we can access unlimited creative pursuits which fuel our inquisitive nature. Consider the public TV channel “Create.” This channel is filled with programming that inspires us to cook new cuisines, design outdoor garden living areas, remodel and redecorate our homes, and travel off the beaten path to explore distant cultures. Our thirst for knowledge and sense of wonder seems to run the show.
Is this any different than our desire to eat out, see a new movie, or attend a concert? Remember the last time you attended the theater? As you settle into your seat, you glance through the program, noting the talented cast. As the curtain opens, an actress, clad in an elaborate costume, speaks her opening lines. A single spotlight reveals the emotion etched on her face. Your eye drifts to the rich scenery backdrop behind her. Suddenly several characters emerge in front of the stage. Their voices chime in a loud chorus. You are intrigued. What will happen next? What is the underlying message that the plot reveals? How will it all end?
Concept Provides Synergistic Effect
Compelling theater with all of it’s ingredients —the plot, scenery, actors, props, dialogue, lighting, program, and costumes—work synergistically to spark audience curiosity. A skillful playwright influences theater goers to identify with the characters and storyline. In so doing, the viewer’s curiosity and underlying creativity are tapped.
Consider the last time you ate in a restaurant with a clear and personable concept. The food was tasty, yet there were other factors which made the meal memorable. Perhaps the wait staff wore T shirts with the restaurant logo and a clever phrase ie; an “important person” of interest eats here. The walls, menu, and table top display incorporate imagery, historic memorabilia, and innovative graphic design which captured a conceptual theme from an historic time, culture, person, or location. Music from the time period or location played in the background. Your curiosity was aroused. So, you sample a new dish. All of the restaurant components coordinate to create an enjoyable atmosphere. Your sense of creativity is nourished.
Contrast this dining experience with a meal you partook in an eating establishment where a distinct conceptual theme was missing. Perhaps the physical setting is bland. You are confused about what to order, as there are no specials highlighted on the menu. While your food tastes good, you sense something is missing. The restaurant seems not to “Know itself.” Read more about this in our article about market messaging. Is this a place you would frequent, or would you look somewhere else the next time you chose to eat out?
Winning advertising is like a great meal or breathtaking theater. Each invokes a believable and captivating environment. Memorable web design also includes an imaginative concept or overarching theme which breathes life into your business. You, as the business owner, do not even need to personally like the concept. What matters most is your audience enthusiasm and connection with it.
Brainstorm/Research Positive Metaphors
For your metaphor to work it must be positive, original, inventive, and inspiring. Thus, there is value in taking the time to research and brainstorm persuasive themes. The theme you finally select ushers forth a creative design influencing the layout, color scheme, typographic treatment, imagery, written copy, and in some cases the logotype. Viola! There you have it. Your business identity is borne.
Be smart. Engage your customer’s curiosity and imagination in what you have to offer. It will, in turn, encourage your target population to make use of your services and products.