People are people, so why should it be | You and I should get along so awfully

– People Are People, Depeche Mode

Did you know that humans are the only species known to blush?

This isn’t a science lesson, simply a quick heads up to illustrate the difference between seeing a reaction in person and expecting to evoke a response from someone behind a screen.

We’re advertising, promoting, exposing, educating, and following our intended users online and offline and across their multiple screens stating one thing after the other in hopes we’re getting a certain desired response, but we don’t get to see them nor whether the response was triggered.

At the end of the day, we count our leads, our visits, our new installs, the number of downloads, and whether we’ve reached our targets…but we still didn’t see their response.

We’re hoping our amazing copy made them happy, or sad, or angry, or hopeful, or even made them blush (depending on the goal), but we didn’t get to see the response…we’re just looking at data and making decisions, adjustments, and arriving at conclusions.

Of course, all the data allows us to react and make the appropriate changes and updates to improve our results, but what about the real people who have come across our ads and assets and how we should be talking to them?

Whether the goals were reached is one thing, but we can’t forget people are people, and we can’t see their emotions – for better or worse – and need to be mindful of our work and the impact we may be having on others – for better or worse.

If it was in person, and we’ve offended someone (on purpose or accidentally), we can notice it quickly, apologize, and amend accordingly. But over the screens, we may be flaming the fire in one way or another…and we don’t even know.

Be aware of the work you’re doing and its possible impact, similarly to whether you’re exaggerating or just plain lying.