The Modern Day Consumer: We Want The Truth In A Pill

Consumer: root word -> consume. “a person who purchases goods and services for personal use”

Consumability: root word -> consume. “able or meant to be consumed”

Consumers want consumability.

Let me tell you a little bit of truth.

Open up Google Scholar. It’s full of high quality, peer-reviewed and well-researched articles written by educated and detail-oriented people.

Search for ‘housing bubble’, and you’ll find several articles detailing the events of the financial crisis that we witnessed over 7 years ago.

In fact, you will even find some articles that were written well before the financial crisis actually happened. You know, articles warning us about the financial crisis that was so imminently about to swallow us.

Some of us may have read through the entire article, and some of us may have stopped a quarter way through, because it was simply too boring.

One thing is for certain, though: The article contained enough information for us to take some preventative action; in other words, do things to slow down (or stop) the growth of the housing bubble, etc.

If the article contained so much truth, so much valuable, life-saving information, why did some us (who started reading it) not bother to read the entire thing?

Answer: A long, detailed and verbose article may hold the truth, but it may not be consumable. In other words, it cannot easily be fed into the minds of the average human being who simply wants to consume and enjoy.

People want the truth in the form of a pill, not a lecture. Give someone the truth in the most easy to consume way possible, and they’ll digest it without a problem.

So, how about that long article that contained multiple warnings about the imminent financial crisis? It was simply not a pill.

Perhaps, a series of short, animated videos with a more natural, friendlier tone may have got the job done. Job, as in getting people to listen and care. Oh, and stick around for the entire thing, not leave a quarter of the way through.

What do the most successful companies (like Apple), the most successful music artists (like Drake), and the most successful anything (really) all have in common with each other? They dish out the truth in a pill. They make their product easy to consume. It’s that simple.

Someone else may make a better phone that Apple, with better features, etc. But if they can’t make it easy to use, simple and connected the way Apple makes their products, that someone else will always lose.

Someone else with a ‘better’ singing voice may make a song. However, if that someone else cannot structure their song in such a way where people just want to sing along, Drake still wins.

I gave examples for phones and music, but this applies to everything. Make your product consumable; put your truth in a pill.

This is why YouTube has created so many young millionaires. A makeup vlogger (Michelle Phan), a fitness vlogger (Mike Change) and an education channel(Khan Academy) all win because they make their truth consumable; anyone can watch their video, and try what they see in the video, and make it work. The truth offered by these YouTubers instantly becomes validated when a user watches their videos, takes the advice of the YouTuber, and creates something instantly.

Example:

Watch Mike Change’s video on how to squat. Go the gym and squat the same way. Bam, you just consumed his video. Compare this to reading a 300+ page encyclopedia on the human anatomy and musculature. Sure, the encyclopedia contains a load of truth, but is it easily consumable? No, so it is harder for its truth to be validated.

Watch Derek Banas’s tutorial on Android Development. Follow his steps. Make a quick app using the Google Maps API. Bam, you just consumed his video.

I feel the modern education system should move toward producing consumable content (knowledge). Nobody can sit and read and entire 500+ page textbook easily. It takes time and effort. It cannot be consumed easily. So, students start to hate studying.

You can’t blame us; we can’t quickly and easily validate anything in the textbook says. But we can validate the truth behind a 10 minute Khan Academy video, or a 30 minute Javascript tutorial. Why? It is easy and (sometimes even enjoyable) for us to consume. So we chose to listen and learn. Bam, we just consumed.

Don’t get it twisted: There will always be room for information rich encyclopedias and textbooks. But to show the world your truth, your product, just know you are dealing with human beings who simply love to consume.

Let’s drop the nonsense and give each other what we truly want.

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