Consumers are weird. They don't do what they say they will do and don't act how we think they "should." Enter Melina Palmer, a sales conversion expert with a personal mission to make your business more effective and brain friendly. In this podcast, Melina will take the complex concepts of behavioral economics (the study and science of why people buy - or not) and provide simple, actionable tips you can apply right away in your business. Whether you're a small business or thriving corporation, Melina's tips can help your business increase sales and get more customers.
How to Build Products That Create Change, An Interview with Matt Wallaert
Matt Wallaert, author of Start at the End: How to Build Products that Create Change is my guest. One of my favorite quotes from Matt is one that shows how we are kindred spirits. He says, “If behavior is your outcome and science your process, you’re a behavioral scientist. No Ph.D. required.”
Good Habits, Bad Habits: An Interview with Wendy Wood
I am so excited to introduce you to Dr. Wendy Wood. Her fantastic new book Good Habits Bad Habits (which I mentioned last week was voted book of the year in the Habit Weekly Awards) is just one of the many amazing things she has contributed to the field of habits. Much of what we know about habits is thanks to Wendy’s research.
The Most Important Step in Applying Behavioral Economics: Understanding the Problem
While researching for my book (which will be coming out in May 2021!) I had the joy of speaking with several dozen amazing people working in applied behavioral science and behavioral economics. People from around the world doing such cool things, wonderful research projects, and so much I’m excited to share with you. You have already been hearing from a lot of them throughout the most recent interviews on the show, and they continue into 2021.
One thing that I found from interviewing so many people about their work is that even when there are different frameworks/names for the approach/unique models for applying behavioral science, most everyone agrees on one thing: where most businesses or entities go wrong is at the very beginning.
When you are trying to solve a problem (or want to apply behavioral economics to nudge behavior or help people make better decisions), many of the projects fail or don’t get off the ground because there isn’t enough time spent identifying the real problem.
This first crucial step is what we are going to be talking about today, to help you as you think about applying behavioral economics in your own business, and I’ll share some of the same tips I give to my own clients and students in this process (and, also, this is a sneak peek into some of what you’ll find in my book…which I am absolutely bursting to be able to give you all the details about…but I have to wait a little longer…soon!)
Alright...let’s talk about that most important step in applying behavioral economics: Identifying the problem.
Show Notes: [01:51] Today I am going to discuss the importance of understanding the problem–the first crucial step when applying behavioral economics in your own business. [02:21] Thank you to all the listeners who voted in the first-ever Habit Weekly Awards, which were announced last week. The Brainy Business won for the best YouTube Channel in behavioral science! [04:23] It is really easy to find the right answer to the wrong question. When you don't invest enough in finding the right question, you end up putting a lot of effort, time, money, and other resources into fixing something that isn’t going to actually get at the root of the behavior. [05:47] I’ve talked about questionstorming several times on the show before (you all know how much I love questions!) Great questions are AMAZINGLY powerful, and in general, people don’t spend enough time asking questions. [07:44] The people who change the world think longer about the problem before they start fixing them. If you want to make change happen and do amazing things, one of the best ways to do that is to spend more time thinking about problems instead of just accepting the first or second thing you think is wrong. [10:07] Revisiting how The Littery proved that their incorporation of behavioral economics and working with the brain got people to willingly throw away and properly sort their garbage. [11:59] Change doesn’t have to be hard. Changing the natural rules of the subconscious brain that have been developing for generations is hard. Understanding them and working with those habits can make it so seemingly insurmountable changes become easy. [13:04] When you use your conscious brain to try to explain to people how they should change their habitual behavior within the subconscious, logic isn’t gonna do it. You need to understand what DOES motivate people, like a lottery, and incorporate it into the behavior so it is easy for them to change. [14:34] By taking a step back and really thinking about the way the brain works and how to align with it you are able to make it so change is much easier than it seems on the surface. [16:36] Being curious and asking good questions allows me to appeal to the subconscious brain. I can learn about the situation while helping them feel valued and involved in the proces
How to Approach and Implement Behavioral Insights, an Interview with Michael Hallsworth
I’m excited to introduce you to Dr. Michael Hallsworth, managing director at Behavioral Insights Team North America and co-author of the new book, Behavioral Insights.
Unleash Your Primal Brain, An Interview with Tim Ash
Today I am so excited to introduce you to Tim Ash, his new book Unleash Your Primal Brain is currently available on presale, to officially launch in April 2021, but everyone listening now can order it direct from Tim using the links in the show notes and you’ll get an autographed copy, which is pretty darn cool!
Early praise from the book has come from Robert Cialdini, Jay Baer, Phil Barden, Will Leach, Roger Dooley, and Nir Eyal (recognize some of those names from past episodes of the show?).
Forbes has named Tim a Top-10 Online Marketing Expert, and he was also named an Online Marketing Influencer to Watch by Entrepreneur Magazine. He had his own podcast, has published over 100 articles, and spoken at more than 200 conferences around the world. His past clients include Google, Expedia, eHarmony, Facebook, American Express, Canon, Nestle, Symantec, Intuit, Costco, and many more. I think it’s safe to say, Tim knows his stuff and I’m honored to have him with me here today.
You know there are a lot of past concepts that will come up today (including last week’s intentionally planned episode on brain chemicals…totally ties in with understanding the primal brain!) and they’re all linked for you in the details below!
Show Notes: [00:42] Today I am so excited to introduce you to Tim Ash, his new book Unleash Your Primal Brain is currently available on presale, to officially launch in April 2021. [03:39] Tim’s interest and fascination with the brain started very early and were a huge part of his college studies. [05:43] Brains didn’t just pop into existence. We are the product of evolution and in order to understand us, you have to understand the whole evolutionary art. [06:42] Sophisticated brains are at least 500 million years old. [07:18] Insects and animals need brains because we are in a world of movement; brains are really only to help us think fast enough to survive in the environment (which is why plants don’t need brains but still develop adaptive tendencies). [07:58] The brain is a very energy-intensive system. [08:29] The body is balancing between digestive, voluntary movement, and the brain. When you run out of energy you need sleep and rest. [09:08] Whenever we are not doing computation or planning tasks, we default to modeling our environment. [11:26] One of the key insights in Tim’s book is understanding that we made an evolutionary bet on culture spread. We can learn more from our surrounding tribe by copying than we can ever in a lifetime of direct experience. That gives us our tribal edge. [13:38] We are born covered in fat and we use that fat to isolate the neurons in the brain so there’s no cross-talk or electrical issues. [15:15] We get enjoyment by helping others and transmitting knowledge. [18:09] One of the huge puzzles that needed to be unlocked from an evolutionary standpoint was “Who (and what) do I learn from?” We want to learn from successful examples. [19:13] We are wired to learn from people that are most like us. [21:17] Once somebody locks into a tribe it is very hard to have them accept other views. A big task is pulling towards the center and somehow having a larger circle of empathy. [23:19] When employees embrace different teams (creating silos) they make it more difficult for the business to be successful. [25:06] Thinking we are individuals and our happiness matters is a very western idea. Most of the world thinks more communally. [27:06] We are hypersocial animals with a need for connection. The worst thing you can do to somebody is isolate them. [28:46] Isolation literally drives us insane. [29:37] As teenagers, you are transferring your allegiance from your parents to your larger group of peers. Parents have less influence than their peers. [32:36] We do a lot of our brain development out of the womb whe
Get Your D.O.S.E. of Brain Chemicals, a Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
You’ve heard me mention all four on the show over the years, but I’ve definitely talked about dopamine the most. Today, I will tell you even more about dopamine while also digging in on the three others