Designing for Word of Mouth, and using Progressive Disclosure

I saw two new technical terms on this blog I was reading by Joshua Porter – Designing for Word of Mouth, and Progressive Disclosure.

Both are really useful; Designing for Word of Mouth encapsulates the often-overlooked point that word of mouth often doesn’t just happen; you need to enable and facilitate it for it to really be effective as a part of your marketing strategy. Designing for it means things like giving people the facility to add contacts from wherever they are currently stored – webmail or desktop applications (like Facebook does).

Progressive Disclosure is a useful concept well known in Interface Design but I hadn’t come across the term before. It encapsulates the kind of functionality shown by wizards; where the user only sees the information relevant at the time – so they see that there different ways to upload their contacts only once they have decided to upload them in the first place.

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