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| 2 minutes read

Pull the Trigger: The Missing Puzzle Piece of Your Content Programme

You've got your list of prospective authors ✅, you've got your process ✅, the final piece in the puzzle of getting your subject-matter experts regularly creating content is defining your trigger.

Dr BJ Fogg, who leads the Persuasive Technology Lab at Stanford University, has mapped out a formula that dictates how to drive behavioural change.

Behaviour (B) = Motivation (M) Ability (A) Trigger (T)

The 3 characteristics on the right-hand side of the equation (MAT) come together to shape your new behaviour - getting your time-poor experts creating content.

1. Motivation 

Now the first piece of the equation, Motivation, involves tapping into the drivers behind why creating content is going to benefit your experts. From your authors' perspective, think about 'what's in it for me?' - as this will be the question they are going to be asking as they consciously/subconsciously make the decision to engage or not.

For example: creating content is going to help (a) differentiate yourself online; (b) stay virtually close to your key clients; (c) open conversations with new contacts; or indeed all of the above and more. Decide the best way to communicate the relevant drivers ahead of getting your experts involved.

2. Ability 

This comes down to is it simple enough? Remove every and any barrier to entry that could possibly trip a user up. The easier the process, the greater the adoption.

3. Trigger 

Read the quote cited below.

We can be all fired up, raring to go and ready to adopt a new habit, with a simple process to get us to the 'promised land', but with the absence of a trigger, you will be pushing a boulder up a hill.

Your trigger should aim to:

  • Inspire - share knowledge, ideas, and success in order to drive adoption
  • Facilitate - reiterate practical recommendations on the easiest ways to get involved (think about 2. Ability and how to frame the simplicity of getting involved) 
  • Socialise - demonstrate what your peer network is doing - making the initiative social includes communicating 'who's doing well' and celebrating success

Most importantly your trigger should focus on positive feedback. Positivity is infectious. It is difficult for your wider team members to ignore the initiative which everyone is in on, regularly hearing results about success, and seeing their peer network excel with. 

The trigger doesn't need to be overly complicated. It can be as easy as sharing anecdotal feedback, sharing topline stats, shining a light on a successful user(s), leveraging gamification, or sharing the product of recent activity. 

The trigger is the piece however that will not only help establish the new behaviour but concrete it into a long-term habit. You, therefore, need a plan on how you are going to regularly deliver your trigger. 

If a [user] is raring to do something, and they’re fully able to do it, what happens next? Well… unless you’re very lucky, nothing at all. A [user] needs a prompt to spring into action! The final piece of the behavioural puzzle is the trigger.


e2e, professional services, marketing, behavioural science, content creation, content strategy

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