Under the Radar

Under the Radar 38: Psychological Tricks


00:00:00   welcome to under the radar a show but

00:00:02   independent iOS and recently Mac app

00:00:04   development I'm Marco Arment and I'm

00:00:06   David Smith under the radar is never

00:00:08   longer than 30 minutes so let's get

00:00:10   started

00:00:11   so today we wanted to dive into a little

00:00:14   bit about talking about the best term

00:00:17   for it is probably cycled the

00:00:18   psychological tricks that are often

00:00:21   employed in apps to boosting retention

00:00:24   engagement addictiveness or things are

00:00:28   you trying to boost it in-app purchases

00:00:29   a lot of these things you often see in

00:00:32   in a like in these kind of in-app

00:00:35   purchase focused applications these you

00:00:37   know sort of pay to play games or things

00:00:39   i've noticed a lot of them in like I was

00:00:41   recently trying out took them on go and

00:00:43   I kept seeing these kind of these trends

00:00:46   in these tricks and these things that

00:00:47   are going on into it and our point in

00:00:49   this is definitely ought to be there's

00:00:50   F&T atopic to talk through about like

00:00:52   the moralizing part of that of like

00:00:53   sometimes these things can get kind of

00:00:55   abusive or really awkward and the way

00:00:58   that they're being used but I think

00:00:59   moreover woder is an interesting topic

00:01:01   as app developers was to think through

00:01:04   how these different ask these different

00:01:06   tricks that you can do can be used

00:01:08   positively in your applications you know

00:01:10   there's some positive things that you

00:01:11   can do when you're aware of these and

00:01:13   also it's kind of a strange experience

00:01:15   that I've had myself that when I started

00:01:17   kind of researching and looking into

00:01:19   these types of topics is that once

00:01:21   you're aware of them you start noticing

00:01:23   them in a lot of different places and

00:01:26   it's kind of like if you ever see

00:01:27   someone do a magic trick and then they

00:01:30   show you how it's done and then they do

00:01:32   the trick again the second time you see

00:01:35   it it has a very different experience

00:01:37   and it can still be interesting and

00:01:38   compelling but it's a it's it's overall

00:01:41   it's a it's nice to have that awareness

00:01:42   of what's going on and she knows we're

00:01:44   gonna kind of talk through some of these

00:01:45   things and I think the first one I

00:01:47   wanted to dive in and talk about is the

00:01:49   concept of loss aversion and so this is

00:01:52   something that you it's like a

00:01:53   psychological phenomena and where people

00:01:55   are much more affected by the prospect

00:01:58   of losing something they have then the

00:02:02   prospect of gaining something new or you

00:02:05   can phrase it in a lot of different ways

00:02:06   but essentially it's like if you have

00:02:07   something or you feel like you have

00:02:09   something you will work way harder to

00:02:11   keep that thing

00:02:13   then you would in regaining it or hadn't

00:02:16   gaining it in the first place and so

00:02:17   you'll see this so often in games like

00:02:19   the first time I remember ever seeing

00:02:20   this sort of concept really driven home

00:02:23   for me was in a game the first time in

00:02:26   like an in-app purchase game where

00:02:27   you're going down here you're doing your

00:02:29   run and you get to the end you die and

00:02:31   the whole thing pops up and it says

00:02:33   would you like to continue for three

00:02:36   crystals or whatever it is like them

00:02:38   whatever the made-up Smurf berry thing

00:02:40   that they're they're using in the game

00:02:42   and all but they're directly doing their

00:02:45   is they're tying in to loss aversion

00:02:47   because you've gotten to this point in

00:02:50   the game you know you oh wow this is my

00:02:51   new high score this is this thing that

00:02:52   I've worked towards I want to keep it I

00:02:55   want to keep it going and you'll be so

00:02:57   much more apt to do it at that moment

00:02:59   then you would to just start again and

00:03:01   try and get there get there in the same

00:03:03   place and as that can be a little bit

00:03:05   tricky and a little bit perhaps not a

00:03:07   not ideal but you can also on the

00:03:08   positive side think of something like

00:03:10   like streaks in a fitness app so in my

00:03:13   app activity plus plus I have this thing

00:03:15   where it tracks how long you've had you

00:03:17   know each hits your standing goal or

00:03:19   your move goal or your exercise goal and

00:03:22   that you don't want to break a streak

00:03:24   because you feel like you have it and

00:03:26   you don't want to lose it and the reason

00:03:29   that that is so said like the concept of

00:03:31   keeping a streak going is so effective

00:03:33   is this concept of loss aversion it's

00:03:35   this weird feeling of people just don't

00:03:38   like giving up things they have and

00:03:40   often since some ways irrationally if

00:03:42   you compare the effort that which

00:03:44   someone will go to keep something they

00:03:45   have versus just you know gaining it

00:03:49   again or gaining it in the first place

00:03:50   and so it's kind of a weird aspect is

00:03:54   this something that you've ever run into

00:03:55   like can you think of apps where you

00:03:57   feel yourself being manipulated by loss

00:03:59   aversion oh yeah

00:04:01   Mario 3 because in Mario 3 the best

00:04:04   possible powerup in the game is the

00:04:06   hammer suit also called the sledgehammer

00:04:08   suit the hammer Brothers suit whatever

00:04:09   it is and you get like one of these in

00:04:12   the whole game you're lucky if you get

00:04:13   one and just like any other powerup if

00:04:16   you get hit you lose it that's it and

00:04:18   the sledgehammer suit is so much better

00:04:20   than anything else in the game is like

00:04:21   those sledgehammers can kill everything

00:04:23   ghosts even like the big thumps like in

00:04:26   the

00:04:26   the Catholic they kill everything it's

00:04:28   amazing and you get one maybe in the

00:04:32   whole game and so you gotta like really

00:04:34   save it up and like I'm so afraid of

00:04:36   using it and then just getting hit and

00:04:37   losing it that I often will go through a

00:04:40   whole game and forget I even have it and

00:04:41   never even use it

00:04:42   sure I know that's total the Rockets

00:04:45   yeah it's fine it's this is the weird

00:04:48   thing like people act irrationally about

00:04:51   like this fear you have of losing

00:04:53   something you have and it's a powerful

00:04:57   tool I think as as developers for us to

00:05:00   like you can think of in our apps like

00:05:02   are there things that we can do where we

00:05:03   make people feel like they have

00:05:04   something that they don't want to lose

00:05:07   because it really can be strongly

00:05:10   impactful like it's this really weird

00:05:12   conditioning thing that people really

00:05:15   don't want to give up what they have and

00:05:17   whether that's yeah it's like I think of

00:05:20   things there's so many things in games

00:05:21   where that same kind of thing happens

00:05:24   where you're trying to make someone

00:05:27   scared of losing something they have I

00:05:30   mean I think you're even like in Pokemon

00:05:31   go is the where I noticed this recently

00:05:33   was they have this this the thing where

00:05:35   like you discover a Pokemon yeah that's

00:05:38   great but if you don't like feed it

00:05:40   raspberries and use the fancy balls it

00:05:42   may run away and having something appear

00:05:45   and then disappear is way more painful

00:05:49   than never finding it which is it what

00:05:52   kind of a weird thing but it's that that

00:05:54   kind of behavior you can totally see the

00:05:57   way like a way that game like that is

00:05:58   structured is entirely to manipulate you

00:06:01   into making sure that you always feel

00:06:02   like you have to use all your things

00:06:04   because you never want to lose the thing

00:06:05   that you just got and that's kind of

00:06:10   weird I don't know like it's it's a

00:06:12   strange thing how people just mindset

00:06:14   just can be they can act against what is

00:06:16   sort of their rational best interest I

00:06:18   suppose you know you see as you said

00:06:20   like you know once you notice this you

00:06:22   kind of see it everywhere like this is

00:06:24   in so many games and you know app

00:06:27   developers you know that this is

00:06:28   relevant to non game developers to some

00:06:31   degree as well I mean obviously a lot of

00:06:33   these kind of tricks or psychological

00:06:36   plays obviously they tend to have I

00:06:39   think the most direct

00:06:40   uses in games especially in that

00:06:43   purchase driven game as you said but

00:06:45   there are certainly places and apps that

00:06:47   you can use a lot of this stuff to like

00:06:49   you know loss aversion is is kind of the

00:06:51   idea between like a time-limited trial

00:06:53   where you you can you can try out this

00:06:56   app and have these great features but

00:06:58   then after you know 30 days or whatever

00:07:00   those features stop working and you have

00:07:02   to pay and buy the app if you want to

00:07:04   keep using those so it's like you had

00:07:05   them you know how good they are and then

00:07:08   oh now they're gone you got you better

00:07:10   pay you know that's it can work the same

00:07:12   way there for us oh sure I mean even in

00:07:15   some ways I makes me think a little bit

00:07:16   about though it's part of what makes

00:07:18   subscription pricing compelling where

00:07:22   you've built up this sense which is sort

00:07:24   of like the lock-in kind of concept but

00:07:27   if you build up a you know like I have

00:07:30   an RSS sinking system that I run and if

00:07:32   you build up all your they have all my

00:07:34   RSS feeds tied into it and like part of

00:07:38   why you may keep paying for it isn't

00:07:40   necessarily because you use it but you

00:07:42   don't want to lose the ability to use it

00:07:44   or you don't want to but like you've

00:07:46   built up a collection of notes in

00:07:49   Evernote or something and you don't want

00:07:51   to you keep paying almost like your

00:07:54   plebs like you're paying like a ransom

00:07:56   to this thing because you don't want it

00:07:58   just like oh well if I stop paying all

00:08:00   the stuff that I've built up over time

00:08:01   will just go away and you may that above

00:08:04   what it actually is reasonable to value

00:08:06   it at because you for you don't to lose

00:08:08   it and like it's interesting that like

00:08:11   it sort of digs into these really deep

00:08:15   parts of P of you where you start to

00:08:16   like act irrationally totally and so the

00:08:20   next one I wanted to talk about and this

00:08:22   is a kind of a fascinating one when you

00:08:24   actually sort of get into read like this

00:08:25   is a weird one almost as a parent I've

00:08:27   noticed myself since I was like did the

00:08:29   research into kind of how reinforcement

00:08:32   was the topic which is no I'm the

00:08:35   concept of how if you're trying to

00:08:37   condition a behavior into something or

00:08:41   someone you know so you have this sort

00:08:44   of experience and reward cycle where you

00:08:46   know if you're maybe this maybe this

00:08:48   rather than getting into parenting so

00:08:50   you think it's like taking care of a dog

00:08:51   or something right like the dog does the

00:08:53   you know you tell it to sit

00:08:55   it's it's you give it a treat you tell

00:08:56   it to sit it's it's you give it a treat

00:08:58   like that's a very simple reinforcement

00:09:00   cycle like the direct positive they do

00:09:03   the action they get the read they get

00:09:05   the reward but the funny thing is in

00:09:08   there's a lot of sort of research that

00:09:09   backs this up is that the strongest and

00:09:12   most powerful form of conditioning is

00:09:15   where you have they call variable

00:09:19   reinforcement where it is still

00:09:21   predictable insofar as the average

00:09:24   number of reinforcing events is sort of

00:09:27   still somewhat constant but the timing

00:09:31   in which they happen is not the same you

00:09:34   know so in the example of trying to

00:09:35   train a drug say if ever if roughly

00:09:37   every third time the dog sits you were

00:09:40   to give it a give it a treat but if you

00:09:44   did it on exactly every third and then

00:09:47   it's much as a much weaker reinforcer

00:09:49   then just on average giving it every

00:09:51   third and this is the concept of science

00:09:55   behind slot machines and many many

00:09:57   things where you if you add just a

00:10:00   little bit of randomness in it so that

00:10:01   the person can get the feeling that on

00:10:04   average they're being fairly rewarded

00:10:05   because if I if it doesn't feel fair

00:10:08   then it's kind of self-defeating because

00:10:11   it's it's consistent enough that it

00:10:13   feels fair but on any particular

00:10:14   opportunity they don't know if they're

00:10:16   going to be rewarded or not it is really

00:10:20   powerful for creating that kind of

00:10:22   classically addictive kind of behavior

00:10:24   where you want to keep trying the the

00:10:28   reinforced activity and you keep trying

00:10:30   and trying and trying in in the hopes

00:10:32   that you'll get it but you never know

00:10:34   when you're going to get it and so

00:10:35   creates this you know it's the cycle and

00:10:37   you know you can imagine this on the

00:10:39   more you know tricky side with a lot of

00:10:42   a lot of things in apps where you kind

00:10:44   of you get an item that will be

00:10:46   upgradeable or has some other value down

00:10:49   the road or like in Pokemon go there was

00:10:52   the thing with eggs where like you get

00:10:53   an egg and you never know what's in it

00:10:55   sometimes it's gonna be something boring

00:10:57   and sometimes it's going to be awesome

00:10:59   and as long as it happen as long as it's

00:11:01   consistent enough that you feel like

00:11:02   it's fair you'll keep trying it in a

00:11:04   more strong way but even in like in a

00:11:07   weird way on the positive side I was

00:11:08   thinking about in a lot of my apps I

00:11:11   have confetti to celebrate when you hit

00:11:13   your goals and in a weird way I'm using

00:11:17   variable reinforcement to get people to

00:11:19   keep opening my app because they don't

00:11:23   know if they've hit their goal when they

00:11:25   open the app you know every it's like if

00:11:28   the whole point of the app is to show

00:11:30   them how many steps they've taken and so

00:11:33   as someone goes around their day every

00:11:34   time you open the app you have this

00:11:36   feeling of like you know it's like

00:11:38   you're pulling the arm on the slot

00:11:39   machine in some ways and saying like

00:11:40   have I done it yet have I done it yet

00:11:42   have it done it yet I did hurray but

00:11:46   that's it's variable you never know when

00:11:48   it's gonna happen you know if it's like

00:11:49   the third time you open the app and

00:11:51   every day you got confetti well it's not

00:11:52   really it it wouldn't be nearly as

00:11:54   compelling and so you is this but if as

00:11:57   long as you add that variability that

00:11:58   randomness into it is where it starts to

00:12:01   get really interesting that's amazing

00:12:03   it's gif and see even that I mean like

00:12:05   the way you're doing it is a little bit

00:12:07   different than like a like a slot

00:12:08   machine kind of thing like the way

00:12:09   you're doing it is based on reaching a

00:12:12   goal whereas like the the just kind of

00:12:15   randomly fail and randomly give people

00:12:17   what they want sometimes that that just

00:12:19   feels a little bit dirty to be I don't

00:12:21   know I mean it's kind of the problem all

00:12:23   these things kind of feel a little bit

00:12:25   dirty if you think about them as like a

00:12:27   way to manipulate people but you know

00:12:29   the with a lot of these things there are

00:12:31   obviously like ways to do it in a way

00:12:34   that makes that let you sleep at night

00:12:36   so you know with this this though I I

00:12:39   have a hard time coming up with those

00:12:41   ways that aren't actually driven by

00:12:43   things that are within the user to

00:12:45   control in reality like your app sure

00:12:47   and that's the thing that's so

00:12:49   interesting about this is a topic that I

00:12:51   kind of found fascinating as a developer

00:12:53   because it's like if you can it's like

00:12:56   if you can be aware of these things and

00:12:57   find ways to judiciously and responsibly

00:13:00   use them in your app it can be really

00:13:02   compelling like that's I mean in many

00:13:05   ways this is what makes things like

00:13:07   Facebook or Twitter or Instagram

00:13:09   effective it's the same this exact same

00:13:11   concept where

00:13:12   you keep going to the thing in the hope

00:13:14   like it's like you never know if you're

00:13:16   gonna open up Twitter and it's just some

00:13:19   it's kind of like more boring or not

00:13:22   interesting to you but every now and

00:13:24   then you get this really interesting

00:13:25   exciting thing or you feel like wow I'm

00:13:27   the first person to know this things it

00:13:28   happened just a moment ago and that

00:13:31   conditions you don't want to go into

00:13:32   there and in a lot of apps like that can

00:13:34   be a useful thing that can be a helpful

00:13:37   thing to actually think back to thank us

00:13:40   my first WWDC hack in 2009 I remember I

00:13:44   signed up for one of the UI design labs

00:13:46   and the person who was you know looking

00:13:50   at my apps design one of his comments

00:13:52   was do you have a place in your app that

00:13:56   has a constantly changing sort of set of

00:14:02   items or a set of anything because if

00:14:05   you do you can start to even create this

00:14:08   this habit and this you know this

00:14:10   pattern that people will start to do to

00:14:12   go and check it you know it's in this

00:14:13   case if there's an audiobook app and

00:14:15   it's like he wasn't wondering if I

00:14:16   should start to do something where you

00:14:18   know each day I put a new you know a

00:14:22   particular book and spotlight it or

00:14:24   something and it creates that same

00:14:26   pattern it's where you even if sometimes

00:14:28   you'll go there and there's nothing it's

00:14:30   it's like oh it's not for me it's not

00:14:31   for me oh that's interesting I've never

00:14:33   seen that the first is you have that one

00:14:35   experience of going there and being

00:14:37   rewarded for it it starts to build that

00:14:39   habit and starts to build it in and that

00:14:41   can be a good thing but like this one in

00:14:43   particular is really worrying to me a

00:14:46   lot of ways and as a side note it always

00:14:48   kind of bothers me when I see app

00:14:50   descriptions in the App Store where it

00:14:52   has like super addictive as listed as a

00:14:56   positive bullet point like you know what

00:15:00   I'm talking about you'll have the little

00:15:01   thing and it's like this it's like an

00:15:02   anti ad like being like being on the top

00:15:04   grossing list I think is also kind of an

00:15:05   anti ad four-and-a-half is it's like oh

00:15:07   if I've down was that I'm probably gonna

00:15:09   spend a lot of money

00:15:10   I always just drove me crazy or it's the

00:15:13   guilty these things and it's like

00:15:15   warning super addictive and like it's

00:15:18   not really a warning in the way that

00:15:19   it's like a health and safety label like

00:15:20   they're trying to pitch it is like he's

00:15:22   like try this app you'll get super

00:15:23   addicted to it like

00:15:25   translated your head as warning huge

00:15:27   ripoff it's like I don't want like the

00:15:29   last thing I the last thing my life

00:15:30   needs is another is like something to be

00:15:33   addicted to like that's that's not ever

00:15:35   going to be a good thing in my life and

00:15:38   so that's definitely something that I

00:15:39   I'd never find like this in particular

00:15:41   like you start to look out for it where

00:15:43   anytime there's kind of a random random

00:15:45   way in which you're reinforced it's like

00:15:47   oh no

00:15:47   take a step back like I'm being messed

00:15:50   with some someone someone is

00:15:51   manipulating me in a way that I may or

00:15:53   may not actually like exactly alright we

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00:17:13   alright the next one of these things

00:17:15   that I thought would be fun to talk to

00:17:17   dive into a little bit is not as much of

00:17:20   a trick like the first two bar but is

00:17:22   something that is a psychological

00:17:23   phenomenon that is pervasive in people

00:17:25   and that is impatience oh boy so this is

00:17:29   something that I start to notice and

00:17:31   obviously none of us like waiting right

00:17:34   like we always feel like we want things

00:17:36   faster better if like faster and

00:17:38   even with less waiting and you see this

00:17:41   in games a lot like I mean you might

00:17:43   also see it in podcast audiences that

00:17:45   only listen to 30-minute podcasts that's

00:17:47   true we may be a particularly impatient

00:17:49   group so maybe this will resonate with

00:17:50   our audience but in a lot of games

00:17:52   you'll have a thing where this is

00:17:54   concept of like a timeout or a weight or

00:17:56   an energy meter that you have to fill up

00:17:58   and if you don't you know when you've

00:18:00   spent all your energy you have to wait

00:18:01   24 hours while you recharge you know or

00:18:04   you can pay money to recharge your

00:18:07   energy meter or I don't you know it gets

00:18:10   very convoluted at a certain point but

00:18:11   it's always tying back to this concept

00:18:13   of impatience that we don't want to wait

00:18:15   that we don't like to have a timeout or

00:18:17   anything like if there's something that

00:18:18   we can do to feel like we're saving time

00:18:21   he'll like we will disproportionately

00:18:23   value it but the interesting thing I was

00:18:26   thinking when I was kind of preparing

00:18:27   this episode is I was thing about smart

00:18:29   speed so and when you made smart speed

00:18:33   like it is in it's a straight a

00:18:35   fascinating feature because it taps into

00:18:37   my sense of impatience in such a way

00:18:39   that if I don't listen to audio from run

00:18:42   through sparked speed like I feel like

00:18:45   I'm wasting my time and that is a really

00:18:48   powerful like I remember reading at an

00:18:50   episode of developing respective years a

00:18:51   couple years ago about this where it's

00:18:52   like it's an insidious feature like in

00:18:54   the best possible way that like smart

00:18:56   speed tadka has now like gotten into my

00:18:59   brain such that if I'd listened to

00:19:01   something that isn't smart speed it's

00:19:02   like why am I doing this I'm wasting

00:19:04   time 10% that could be you know I could

00:19:06   have 10% more audio listened to in a

00:19:09   particular amount of time because that's

00:19:10   what smarts B does and I wouldn't notice

00:19:12   it because that's the whole cool thing

00:19:14   with smart speed you know just shortens

00:19:16   those silences that I never hear anyway

00:19:17   it really ruins YouTube for me I have a

00:19:19   very hard time watching youtube videos

00:19:20   because like these are so slow sure I

00:19:24   mean it's true I've definitely had that

00:19:27   same thought when I was going through

00:19:28   WWDC videos I was like oh man I wish I

00:19:30   could smart speed these right and it's

00:19:32   time tapping into that sense of

00:19:33   impatience like we hate waiting we hate

00:19:36   feeling like things couldn't if it could

00:19:38   be faster we want it to be faster I

00:19:40   guess in some ways we could just tap tap

00:19:42   for me like how this is relevant to app

00:19:43   developers perspective it's like well we

00:19:45   could always just make everything faster

00:19:46   like that's a definitely a good thing

00:19:48   that people hate waiting so if we can

00:19:50   make our apps patter if that faster

00:19:51   better perform

00:19:52   and etc then that's cool and if there's

00:19:55   any areas that we can take out weights

00:19:57   then people will definitely like it and

00:19:59   will notice and appreciate that but I

00:20:02   guess on the flip side is if we

00:20:03   introduce artificial weights we can

00:20:06   potentially find ways to make people

00:20:08   work to avoid them

00:20:09   yeah that's ooh have you seen like any

00:20:12   of the big games like I think the worst

00:20:14   ones like the real racing games yes like

00:20:17   you try these games out like on your

00:20:18   Apple TV or something and like oh it's

00:20:20   this free racing game it looks pretty

00:20:21   good all right cool and it's like oh

00:20:23   well congratulations you just bought

00:20:25   this upgrade for your car with these

00:20:27   cool with use coins you earned it's

00:20:29   going to be installed over the next 45

00:20:31   minutes or you can pay more coins and

00:20:34   have it installed faster it's like it's

00:20:35   such man it drives me crazy like

00:20:38   unfortunately I've never gotten too into

00:20:40   these games but I've seen them enough

00:20:41   and every time I see it it just makes me

00:20:43   angry like I just feel like there's

00:20:46   that's just a progress bar to nothing

00:20:47   and it's just a completely artificial

00:20:49   delay insert for no reason other than to

00:20:52   try to get more people to pay more money

00:20:54   for nothing like they're getting nothing

00:20:58   for it's I don't know I mean I say this

00:21:01   as somebody who you know my app is

00:21:03   funded by people paying for nothing but

00:21:05   still like it just feels really

00:21:07   manipulative and wrong to me when I see

00:21:09   it when I see the way these games do it

00:21:10   sure yeah and it's like you can take

00:21:13   advantage of people's impatience in

00:21:15   positive ways like I just said of a

00:21:16   smart speed right like I don't think you

00:21:18   necessarily set out to do it that

00:21:19   specifically in mind but like for me as

00:21:21   a user that's why I why I use over house

00:21:24   to listen to podcasts and I now use it

00:21:27   to listen to audiobooks to like I use it

00:21:29   to listen to everything that I listen to

00:21:30   you that's audio related is I'll put it

00:21:32   into run it through overcast because in

00:21:34   my mind the impatience in me thinks that

00:21:37   if I'm not I'm wasting time and I you

00:21:41   know it has tremendous retention as a

00:21:44   result like I think it's a well it's a

00:21:46   really powerful feature in that way and

00:21:47   if you can find these little hooks that

00:21:49   people make people feel like they're

00:21:50   saving time that's huge but yeah like

00:21:52   you the flip side of it can be so so

00:21:56   awkward where you it's like this

00:21:57   artificial scarcity kind of concept

00:21:59   where people are just like inventing

00:22:01   things that take longer or need more

00:22:05   what Evers to create or use when you

00:22:09   know it's just a it's just a number in a

00:22:12   database somewhere it's not any that

00:22:14   doesn't cost anything to create yeah

00:22:16   like you have to create this out the

00:22:18   sense of artificial scarcity this is

00:22:20   like oh you know we only have so many

00:22:22   installers in the virtual car each car

00:22:24   garage who are able to install new

00:22:26   spoilers like that's really what they're

00:22:30   saying it's like there's only so many of

00:22:31   these virtual guys who are able to run

00:22:33   around like no there's not like you just

00:22:34   you just you know flip flip a number

00:22:38   around and then it's done it's that

00:22:39   doesn't cost you know doesn't take time

00:22:41   or effort so yeah it's like impatience

00:22:44   is it is a tricky tricky one for for me

00:22:47   to feel okay with when you start using

00:22:49   it too much in an app and anything that

00:22:50   isn't other than just like making it

00:22:52   faster yeah like it's more you know like

00:22:53   if you're if you are creating artificial

00:22:56   delays just for the purpose of people

00:22:59   paying you money that feels a little bit

00:23:01   weird and I can't think of a lot of good

00:23:03   ways to do that off the top of my head

00:23:04   whereas if you are taking something that

00:23:06   is slow for like I don't know quote

00:23:09   natural reasons and you are adding value

00:23:13   to the world or something by making that

00:23:15   faster that's obviously a very different

00:23:18   kind of game you're playing like that

00:23:19   that is like adding to the world that is

00:23:21   making things better for people or like

00:23:23   inserting artificial delays so that like

00:23:26   kids beg their parents to let them pay

00:23:28   you more money I don't know that just

00:23:30   feels wrong yeah and there's a lot of

00:23:31   this thing they can go that way but

00:23:33   anyway we can move on to our next slide

00:23:35   we get too too stuck in the weeds of

00:23:37   moralizing about it because it just

00:23:39   makes me sad so I think the last place

00:23:42   we've sort of wanted to touch on is the

00:23:44   in US gets a bit more social I think is

00:23:46   sort of the a combination of sort of the

00:23:48   fear of missing out or what you'd call a

00:23:50   fail I think it's what the hipsters call

00:23:52   FOMO and competition so this is these

00:23:58   are very similar so like at least

00:24:00   fundamentally and I thought I went to

00:24:02   Wikipedia when I was preparing for this

00:24:03   and I thought they had a really

00:24:04   interesting definition of the fear of

00:24:06   missing out and it's there a pervasive

00:24:09   apprehension that others might be having

00:24:11   rewarding experiences from which we are

00:24:13   absent it is such a true thing and this

00:24:18   is a lot

00:24:18   I think people say why things like

00:24:20   Twitter are really and Facebook are so

00:24:24   compelling and interesting for you

00:24:26   because you feel like you're never

00:24:27   missing out in someone else's experience

00:24:29   and in a weird way you're almost part of

00:24:31   it because you can see what they're

00:24:35   doing you know you can see go on

00:24:37   Instagram and see a picture of every

00:24:39   meal they've had and so even if you do

00:24:41   weren't there and you didn't you have

00:24:43   that same meal you still sort of got to

00:24:44   experience a little bit of it and it

00:24:46   kind of can create that feeling of it

00:24:48   helps you deal with that that that you

00:24:51   know the apprehension that someone else

00:24:52   could be having an experience that

00:24:53   you're not having and so a lot of apps

00:24:56   have sharing built into them you have

00:24:59   this concept of sharing what you're

00:25:02   doing to create that kind of that that

00:25:06   reinforcement or that people can go and

00:25:08   feel like they're experiencing other

00:25:09   people's lives and not missing out as a

00:25:13   result you know and so a lot of apps

00:25:14   will have a little share button or

00:25:15   something like that and you can on the

00:25:17   flip side are similarly related to it

00:25:19   you have like the competition side of

00:25:21   things which is where you can kind of

00:25:24   share your experiences almost in a

00:25:26   overtly challenging way that like you're

00:25:29   almost saying like this is my experience

00:25:31   is yours is good which is in some ways

00:25:35   you're like directly tapping into

00:25:36   someone's fear of missing out by saying

00:25:38   like I just went for a great run you

00:25:41   know I look these are my steps or you

00:25:43   didn't like kid the Fitbit I think has a

00:25:45   whole lot of this and watch OS 3 has

00:25:46   this in the activity sharing like you

00:25:48   have this concept of saying like here's

00:25:50   something I did can you do any better

00:25:51   which is a really powerful way to make

00:25:54   people attach to something you're doing

00:25:56   because it feels more personal and it

00:25:58   almost says like taps into like

00:25:59   elementary school peer pressure kind of

00:26:02   stuff that if someone else is doing it

00:26:03   then maybe I should do it too oh and

00:26:05   also like that that kind of it helps you

00:26:08   and your app latch on to and likely

00:26:11   profit from people's existing

00:26:14   competitive relationships in their lives

00:26:16   so like if you have like you know two

00:26:17   friends who are always trying to outdo

00:26:19   each other or are having like a friendly

00:26:21   competition with with you know the

00:26:23   activity they have in a day or whatever

00:26:24   else to have them competing in a way

00:26:26   that means using your app more is good

00:26:29   news for you yeah because it

00:26:31   that's ultimately like so much of this

00:26:34   ultimately is coming down to trying to

00:26:37   find ways that are beyond just like the

00:26:41   fundamental functionality of your app

00:26:42   but finding other ways for making people

00:26:44   to want to keep opening it you know it's

00:26:46   like it's retention I guess is the like

00:26:48   the KPI the keeper I don't know the

00:26:53   parking lot yeah it's the thing that you

00:26:56   that you're that you're kind of looking

00:26:57   for where and this is I mean I ran into

00:26:59   this a lot with like a lot of my apps

00:27:01   are now supported from advertising and

00:27:03   if you have an advertising supported app

00:27:05   like you want to have people keep

00:27:07   opening your app and so anything you can

00:27:09   do to give them a reason to do that is

00:27:12   you know is pretty interesting like and

00:27:15   in sharing or these kind of these

00:27:16   competitive kinds of things it's you can

00:27:18   get into really funny places too and you

00:27:20   start to think about it of you know when

00:27:23   someone shares their steps with someone

00:27:27   else and say you have a system in your

00:27:28   app where you sent them a push

00:27:29   notification there's nothing I've

00:27:32   actually gotten into but I've been

00:27:33   trying to think through those kinds of

00:27:34   things you can get into really funny

00:27:36   questions of should you show the

00:27:39   information in the app because you just

00:27:42   say that you know so ins you know Marco

00:27:44   sent you a step challenge or something

00:27:46   or should you be specific about it or

00:27:49   you know someone just updated they're

00:27:51   sort of like you'll see this I think on

00:27:52   Matt actually on Facebook but I've seen

00:27:54   these on other people's like phones and

00:27:57   screenshots we have like so-and-so

00:27:58   updated their status and you don't tell

00:28:00   anybody why like what actually they did

00:28:02   oh yeah well the worst one is like this

00:28:04   person you know commented on your photo

00:28:06   but they won't tell you what the comment

00:28:07   is sure it's like and the reason is

00:28:09   because it creates it improves retention

00:28:12   and going to something if you have to go

00:28:15   to the app to find out and so you can

00:28:17   take advantage of the fact that people

00:28:18   are competitive and we don't miss out on

00:28:20   other people's experiences and you can

00:28:23   tap into that in an app that it's like

00:28:25   by making it social you can make it

00:28:26   compelling a little weird in some ways

00:28:30   but overall like a lot of this it people

00:28:33   are doing this moron thing on their own

00:28:35   and maybe you can be aware of it and see

00:28:37   it as an opportunity for helping your

00:28:38   app to spread like I love when my apps

00:28:41   are growing because of social sharing

00:28:42   that people are saying you know I

00:28:45   you know I I got your app I loved it I

00:28:47   recommended it to three friends like

00:28:49   that's awesome that's like the really

00:28:50   positive version of this but you know

00:28:52   maybe it says with all these things like

00:28:53   there's definitely this balance of you

00:28:56   can use it in a good way or you can use

00:28:57   it in a not so good way and maybe at the

00:29:00   very least if you're aware of it you'll

00:29:01   be able to better take care of yourself

00:29:03   as a result yeah all right we're out of

00:29:06   time this week thanks a lot for

00:29:08   listening everybody please use these

00:29:10   tricks responsibly and use them to make

00:29:13   people's lives better not worse make the

00:29:14   world a better place don't subtract from

00:29:16   it thanks everyone and we'll see you

00:29:18   next week bye