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April 20th, 2012

Welcome to the C.S.T. (Common Sense Test)



By Brokaw digital strategist Katie Riley

Being a “digital strategist” means, a lot of the time, people think I am smarter than I actually am. The majority of this is attributed to the fact that it seems like I’m speaking a different language about 90% of the time. But some can be attributed to one little test I use for any digital execution we set live here at Brokaw. It’s called the C.S.T. (Common Sense Test). And it’s composed of one ultra-scientific question:

“Would I do it?” Since we all work in this industry (if you don’t, thanks for reading our weekly newsletter anyway), it’s easy to forget that we’re also consumers. Even though we may not be the target market, we still consume the media we are advertising in. We know what we respond to, and, well, what annoys the bejesus out of us (cool it with the pop-ups, Netflix). So, let’s C.S.T. some C.T.A.’s (Calls To Action), and show you how this complex test works:

Call to Action -> Click Here

Question for yourself: Would I click on it?

Call to Action -> Scan this QR code

Question for yourself: Would I scan it? (Probably not.)

Call to Action -> Watch our video

Question for yourself: Would I watch it?

Call to Action -> Share

Question for yourself: Would I share this?

I’m well aware that you can’t just go to your client and/or creative team with the results from your focus group of one and kill their brilliant idea. But it allows you to ask the follow up question of “What would need to change to get me to take this action?”, and then provide constructive feedback (with a smile, of course). I know it seems insanely simple, but in the words of Steve Jobs, “Simple can be harder than complex.”

Common Sense Test getting you down?  Try the Axl Rose Test. If something makes a lot of sense, do the complete opposite. Sorry we missed you in Cleveland last weekend, Axl. (So did our bakeries . . . ZING!)