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Graphic Design

5 Psychology Tips That Help Designers Build Your Audience

By November 11, 2017January 18th, 2021No Comments7 min read

The challenges tackled as designers are always multifaceted they are systemic in nature and not simple.

According to Tim Brown, In order to tackle them with any degree of comprehension, we have to look at them from a multidisciplinary perspective, look at them from many different directions.

So, being a designer means applying multiple disciplines one part visual designer, one part business, one part marketing and to add one part is the human disciplines of social science (psychology).

Often as a designer, what we do is attempting to bridge these disciplines to look at something creatively not only.

The practical aspect of a designer is in actually applying those disciplines, in creating a design that really connects with the intended audience.

People buy from people they trust. It’s what constitutes a loyal customer.

If you’ll need your target audience to come once, then, again and again, you’ll need to understand your audience. This will eventually be able to build your thriving customers base and improve brand loyalty.

Good design as far as is necessary for building your brand loyalty, the designers need more than a basic understanding of psychology for their work to make a worthwhile impression.

What people see and what they feel are two very different things. The first is an aesthetic experience; the other bit is a psychological one.

In this post, I will be breaking it down 5 psychology principles on how designers can trigger your audience with an emotional connection, that motivate them to take a desirable action and remain loyal to your brand.


Visual Communication As A Universal Language

Visuals help us tell better stories to an audience. Visuals are more than just aesthetic, visuals are communication.

A research was done by Kissmetrics at first glance, one of the fundamental lessons Fitts’s law outline is that visual ‘weight’ (in the visual hierarchy) is a big determinant in what attracts eyes.

Visuals attract audience attention.

A good designer understands the meaning attached to the elements of each visual like colour, shapes, and arrangement. Change of colour or changing the placement of elements can likely change the entire meaning of the visual.

For example, The visual element below has been used as a universal language. The interpretation of these visuals elements are connected to human instincts should subconsciously pick up on what they communicate.

Remembering that visuals are more than just aesthetic, or decoration, visuals can provide information.

So, a designer needs to know that images can be remembered for a longer period of time and in more detail than words. But, use of visual on the different platform can change the meaning, mislead, manipulate what you intended to communicate to your audience.


Visuals Influence In Decision-making And Experience

Visuals go deeper in actually create an experience by allowing an audience to interact with the design.

Digital technologies allow audiences to experience information in a way that isn’t possible in print; in a digital environment, audiences can engage and interact and thereby immerse themselves in the information experience that provokes decision making.

A positive impression of a design ( product or process) puts the brain in a state where the user enjoys using or seeing it building on the loyalty of your product.

Consider the three facets of persuasion according to Aristotle: facts, emotion, and source.

Source: copypop

Visuals at the intersection of these three facets can be highly effective tools of persuasion.

The first-time impression of visuals is the dominant influence in the manner we make decisions.


Consistent With Branding, Color, Fonts and Branding Elements

Building on your brand recognition and loyalty is beyond getting your name out there. It’s about helping your audience get to know your brand on a personal level.

The Best way of engaging the right emotions with your consumers is actually making them feel like they know your brand and that your brand can be trusted.

Brand consistency is part of building trust with your audience.

As human nature, we love familiarity and internal consistency, in our beliefs, ideas, and values. It’s what keeps us happy in customer experience.

Developing a seamless look for your brand across your print media, website, all social media channels, even in your store and on your product packaging will make consumers feel more comfortable with your brand.

This will make them more likely to purchase from you again and again.

Giving consumers a dependable experience across all your channels of communication works along the same lines as always putting out a dependable product.

In your brand consistency for your business strive to communicate your message in a way which doesn’t deviate away from the core brand strategy, values and foundation.


This means your brand’s message need to be delivered in the same tone, the logo being used in a similar way, a single typeface is used for all brand communications and typography and colour are consistent.

You need to ensure a consistent aesthetic and behavioural customer experience for your website visitors too.

If you consistently change the colour schemes and fonts on various print or digital platform, then your audience will feel confused with these changes through experiencing a visual dissonance. This might translate to your sales or on the number of website visitors.

Building a brand is all about providing consistency, trust, and recognition for your customer base.

Choose two to three colours and either one or two of fonts for your brand loyalty goal. Once it becomes a part of your identity, your audience will easily recognize you through them and hopefully, this will encourage customer and build your audience base.

Monitoring consistency in your brand delivers a largely consistent customer experience, supported by an integrated marketing effort.

Branding is not limited to having a logo in a consistent manner and the right colour swatch. It’s about ensuring that the brand message is in of all communications material.

The consistency principle can be applied to how your users interact with your website. This means that the order, size and overall usability of the buttons, links, forms and other elements on your website must not change.


Limit The Number Of Choices On Your Design

Users would want as many choices as possible? until when they actually get what they need.

In Hick’s law, psychologist William Hick and his research partner Ray Hyman proved that the more options available to a person, the longer it will take them to come to a decision.

The law can be equally applied to all visual design and web design, particularly in limiting the options in menus or interactive elements on a page.

This is more similar to the design principle “KISS: Keep It Simple, Stupid.”

Simply put, only include the necessary elements in a design. Any extra elements that serve no purpose weigh down the user experience and mind.

The optimal number of options, in each situation, will depend on the context and can be determined only by testing.

Avoid confusing the visitors to your site with too many options. If people come to your site there is a good chance that they are pretty close to making a decision to purchase.

The visitor might know that they want something to fix their problem or to entertain them. They might simply be undecided about what specifically to choose.

For example, For visitor visiting your homepage, limit the options they have for calls to action. Figure out what the best possible outcome for the next step will be from your homepage. Focus on giving only one option at a time for the visitor.


Introducing Play to improve the user experience

Create personalized experiences for your audience.

It is human being inherently inquisitive, one would wish to find out how things work. And, if you tell them an incomplete story, they can’t find closure until they hear the ending.

You can leverage this inherent human characteristic to pique the interest of your target audience, then create suspense and tease them?

Before you raise the curtain for complete customer satisfaction.

In term, this is called the curiosity gap.

The perfect example of this is signing up for our email account. In this example, the cue is the login screen seeing this, regular users know immediately what to do. The routine is typing in the username and password, a task we’re so accustomed to, we do it mindlessly. And finally, the reward, access to our emails.

As humans are creatures of habit, the habit loop accounts for most of our behaviour even up to 40% of our time, according to the paper.

What this means for designers is that, by integrating the highly-defined steps of the habit loop into usability, you make it easier for users to build their own habit loops with your product.

For example, include a visual cue that’s easy to recognize, and offer a reward that’s enough incentive to come back for.

You need to ensure that you don’t go overboard and deliver on the promises you make in the headline if you want to retain customer loyalty in the future.



Design all about user-centred. Understanding people and how they respond to design is a step in building your customer base.
Consider the above tips as a springboard to building your brand audience through merge design with predictable human behaviour.


How do you nurture your audience relationships for better brand loyalty and convert them into customers?

Paul S

Founder and Team Lead of Simpaul Design, a brand strategy and design agency in Nairobi, Kenya. Here at Simpaul Design, we work with brands across various categories with a focus on connecting with consumers and building brands that people want to be a part of. We specialize in brand identity and strategy, UX/UI, and brand transformation.