#56 Authenticity

Authenticity indicates whether or not some thing’s “real.” Low-bandwidth websites appear more authentic, and current research shows that “authentic” ads and brand experiences are what consumers crave. People don’t trust most advertising. They trust online advertising less, in particular, online video and online banner ads.

We Rely on “Authenticity” to Trust a Website
Long ago, we trusted “the media” to give us the straight story, but trust in the press has been declining for years. The Web has further blurred the picture by creating a relatively level playing field for communicators, where scamming can appear just as well-produced as legitimate
companies.

Not Slick or High-brow
Low-bandwidth websites are not “hip”, they’re not slick, and they’re definitely not “high brow.” But they work by being direct, memorable, and honest. They work because they feel down at our “level,” connecting with us in a way
flashy sites can’t.

Low-bandwidth Websites are More Powerful
A personal touch generates response by triggering “reciprocity.” We believe someone put personal effort into reaching us. These websites are simple. They work at a visceral level. They don’t try to be more than they are. They’re unpretentious.

“Glossier,” “artier,” or “more highly produced” websites are NOT more effective. They just cost more and take more time.