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Lately I’ve been walking around the office talking about Neanderthals. What if we kept them in mind in our marketing efforts? Barring the help of a cognitive enhancement product, people just don’t have the time to absorb all of the messaging that constantly surrounds them. In fact, the rule of thumb for webpage planning is that people only give you seven seconds to decide whether to click through to your site or bounce away.

In everything we do these days, we try to make the messaging clear, concise and simple. So if a Neanderthal can’t understand it then it needs to be simplified. I don’t mean that things have to be crude and dumb. You can have sophistication and simplicity. In fact elegant minimalism is quite the design trend. It’s just that we are all so very busy, juggling a million different things. So we scan. We glance. We can’t absorb that much information at one time anymore. And forget about recall. Actually the smarter you are, the more likely you are to have more responsibility so you just don’t have time to pay attention to details.

So when it comes to website home pages, print ads, sell sheets, package design, emails, landing pages, etc. keep it simple and build your story telling in layers that can be peeled back for more depth, understanding and appreciation.