May 26, 2023
In order to design effective solutions, businesses
need to have a clear understanding of the different types of
decisions their customers make. Not all decisions are created
equal, and handling them differently ensures better outcomes.
Companies should avoid applying a one-size-fits-all approach,
instead aiming for a tailored response that addresses the specific
needs of each consumer decision. By having a better grasp of
decision-making processes, businesses can create products,
services, and experiences that truly resonate with their
In this episode of The Brainy Business podcast, Sam
Evans emphasizes the importance of diagnosing the decision before
prescribing a solution. Instead of providing a standard response to
every challenge or query, businesses should seek to comprehend the
decision type, the question being asked, and the desired outcomes.
Evans highlights that businesses must go beyond just addressing
jobs to be done but also consider the deeper aspirations and
self-identity of customers.
- Uncover the pivotal role of the decision-making process in
designing impactful solutions.
- Create a practical decision spectrum to categorize customer
- Engage customers effectively while providing answers that
direct them to optimal choices.
- Explore the power of weaving engaging stories and emotions into
the decision-making framework.
- Devise immersive experiences that naturally drive customer
engagement without forcefulness.
- 00:00:00 - Introduction,
Sam Evans, founder and CEO of Design for Decision, talks about his
background in brand strategy and innovation and his passion for
helping teams design products, services, and experiences that
change behavior and drive growth.
- 00:03:40 - From Reputation Management to Behavioral
Sam shares how his career has been about designing for behavior
change, starting with reputation management and public affairs,
then moving to brand strategy and innovation at Pepsi, and
eventually launching Design for Decision.
- 00:07:29 - Design for Decision's Mission,
Sam talks about Design for Decision's mission to put the latest
science of how people think, decide, and behave into action for the
purpose of winning brand positioning, meaningful innovation, and
more engaging cross-channel experiences for big brands,
non-profits, and startups.
- 00:09:27 - Connections with Behavioral Science
Sam talks about his connections with behavioral science experts
like Robert Cialdini, Steve Wendell, and Nir Eyal, and how he has
integrated their ideas into his work at Design for Decision.
- 00:14:31 - Designing for Decision,
Sam explains how designing for decision is more than just designing
for the jobs to be done, and how not all decisions are created
equal. He talks about the importance of understanding the decision
before designing anything and how businesses can do social good by
helping people make more confident, effective, and efficient
- 00:15:56 - Understanding Different Types of
Sam Evans emphasizes the need to move away from the assumption that
all clients face the same challenges or require the same toolkit to
solve their problems. He suggests that different types of decisions
should be diagnosed first and then solutions prescribed to answer
questions based on the decision-making needs of the customers.
- 00:18:38 - The Decision Design Spectrum,
Sam Evans introduces the idea of a decision design spectrum, which
classifies different types of decisions into deliberation, default,
and deciding. He explains that depending on where a decision falls
on this spectrum, different tactics must be employed for effective
- 00:21:08 - Educating vs Engaging,
Sam differentiates between educating and engaging customers, citing
the success of smoking cessation campaigns that used negative
reinforcement instead of education to deter smoking. He recommends
engaging customers in ways that inspire and answer their questions
instead of educating them on why a product is important.
- 00:25:18 - The Importance of Translating and Avoiding
Sam Evans advises businesses to avoid asking customers to do math
and include technical jargon. Instead, communicate in simple
language. He suggests providing familiar concepts and translating
information to help customers make informed decisions.
- 00:28:04 - Engaging Customers in the Right Way,
Sam Evans highlights the success of brands like Amy's Kitchen in
engaging customers through appealing visuals and inviting
experiences. He suggests businesses find ways to engage customers
based on their decision-making preferences, whether it's System 1
(subconscious) or System 2 (conscious).
- 00:29:30 - Understanding Decision Making &
Sam Evans highlights the importance of understanding decision
making and behavior. He emphasizes that it is crucial to diagnose
the decision before prescribing the solution. He also notes that
not all decisions are created equal, and it is essential to
consider the type of decision before designing a solution.
- 00:31:00 - Leading with Behavior,
Sam and Melina discuss the importance of leading with behavior when
it comes to growing a brand. Sam argues that focusing on behavior
first is crucial because people buy based on behavior. He suggests
that the emphasis should be on designing for behavior rather than
forcing things on people.
- 00:32:15 - Education vs. Behavior,
Sam and Melina discuss the challenges of educating people about a
product or service. They note that the goal is often to get people
to care about something in the same way the company cares about it
(which is a bad approach). Sam argues that it is more important to
focus on designing an experience that is engaging and inviting
rather than leading with education.
- 00:33:40 - Behavioral Design for Good,
Sam emphasizes that he would love to have more conversations with
those who are trying to do good by people and change the world. He
notes that private organizations, public organizations, nonprofit,
and startups are all welcome to reach out to him. Sam highlights
that the goal of behavioral design is to make a connection and
design an amazing experience that is really engaging.
- 00:38:02 - Conclusion,
Melina's top insights from the conversation. What stuck with you
while listening to the episode? What are you going to try? Come
share it with Melina on social media -- you'll find her as
@thebrainybiz everywhere and as Melina Palmer on LinkedIn.
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