There I was, Sunday afternoon, sitting on the couch with a good book to read. Not an ebook mind you, a real printed book.
In an instant, I caught myself scanning the bottom of the page looking for a time indicator that would tell me how much ‘reading time’ I had left in the chapter. I felt silly.
I have become so accustomed to reading using my Kindle Paperwhite ereader that I have developed new habits that influence how I read.
How to build habit forming products?
What Amazon, since I own a Kindle, has done in my case is change the way that I approach reading. Amazon built a product that changed my reading habit.
No longer do I simply pick up a book and read. In my personal situation I double check the time I have available to read against the time remaining in a chapter… and then decide to read. Maybe it is a form of ‘Readers-OCD’, who knows, but I like to read from chapter to chapter.
The ‘time left’ indicator at the bottom of the indicator has replaced my need for a page number. Since the indicator is adjusted according to my actual reading speed it is my best indicator and keeps me motivated to not slip behind my ‘speed-reading’ curve so to speak. Reading the printed book I noticed that this pressure disappeared and I was more easily distracted.
Nir Eyal… Captain ‘Hooked’?
Nir Eyal, former Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he taught the “Using Neuroscience to Influence Human Behavior” course, and Hasso Plattner Institute of Design teacher, knows all to well how to do this.
In his book ‘Hooked’ Nir Eyal introduces readers to the “Hook Model,” a four steps process companies use to build customer habits. Through consecutive hook cycles, successful products reach their ultimate goal of bringing users back repeatedly without depending on costly advertising or aggressive messaging.
Reviews for Nir Eyal’s book are flattering to say the least:
Nir’s work is an essential crib sheet for any startup looking to understand user psychology.
Dave McClure, Founder 500 Startups
You’ll read this. Then you’ll hope your competition isn’t reading this. It’s that good.
Stephen P. Anderson, Author of “Seductive Interaction Design”
I almost passed on this book because it felt uncool to try and “hook” people through manipulation. But Nir does a great job addressing the ethics and being a proponent of developing products that have meaning for the developers and materially improve the lives of users.
From book to Udemy course
In this course, Nir shares a framework for designing habit-forming products called “the Hook Model” which he also discusses in his book ‘Hooked’.
The framework gives entrepreneurs and product designers a new way for thinking of the necessary components of influencing user behavior. Nir shares the tactics companies like Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter use to drive repeat engagement, successfully.
More Nir Eyal Resources
If you haven’t done so, make sure to visit his blog NirandFar.com to stay up to date on Nir’s writings and other publications.
Or if you are in Amsterdam on April 30th 2014, you can see him speak at the Habit Summit Europe.