Technology is trying to keep up with the rapid changes in the business world, but training lags behind. It is important not to ignore traditional methods when learning and development uses the digital transformation.
L&D uses marketing techniques to achieve common goals. The AIDA model is used to help create powerful messages that engage an audience. It is possible to apply this methodology to learning solutions because it focuses on the core principles of human nature. The AIDA model can still be used to create modern learning solutions.
Start by Developing a Learner PersonaBefore you can use the AIDA formula to create an engaging learning experience, it’s important to understand your audience. Just as marketers have a consumer persona as their foundation, the learner persona exemplifies your archetypal learner and keeps their needs and motivations top of mind. This conceptual technique brings them to life so you can create a learning experience that drives impact and elicits intended performance outcomes.
The learner persona encourages thinking about access and the experience. Is there a place where the learner will be able to access information? Can the information be broken into small lessons for convenience, or will they have to learn in the flow of work? Will they understand what's being said? Creating a learning solution that uses AIDA is dependent on the insight from the learner persona.
AIDA Model Translated to L&DWith a solid understanding of your participants, you can then layer the AIDA model onto your design to drive course uptake and the desired performance outcome. The AIDA acronym represents four essential concepts to create powerful messages, which we’ll apply to learning.
- Awareness: The first step in creating a learning solution is to raise awareness of the problem or need that the training is designed to address. This could be a specific skill or knowledge gap that employees need to fill to perform their jobs more effectively. By raising awareness of the problem or need, the training program can generate interest and engagement among the target audience. This stage also represents when the learner becomes aware of the program. For example, you can create awareness through a corporate newsletter, social media, and even leadership announcements.
- Interest: Once awareness has been raised, the next step is to generate interest in the learning solution. You can do this by highlighting the benefits of the program, such as increased productivity, improved job performance, and career advancement opportunities. By creating interest in the program, you can ensure that the target audience is motivated to participate. At this stage, learners discover the benefits of following through with the learning experience and become interested in learning more.
- Desire: The next step is to create and maintain a desire for the learning solution by emphasizing the value and impact of the program on the target audience’s personal and professional lives. At this point in the journey, the learner has been hooked and now wants to follow through with the course. They have decided that it’s valuable to them, and the learning solution needs to deliver on this.
- Action: The final step is to inspire the target learner to take action. Like in marketing, this is the most important step of the journey. If the learner gets frustrated or is unable to access the information when needed, they will lose motivation to proceed.
Practical Application of Applying AIDA to Create a Killer Learning ExperienceWe’ve seen a shift in marketing and learning strategies as learners’ preferences for relevance have increased along with their desires for personalized experience. Therefore, you must purposefully apply AIDA. Let’s take a close look at each step of the process:
The first step is awareness.
It is important that learning content is tailored to the audience. Tease them with interesting headlines. It's important to convey your learning message in concise words. This should make people curious and encourage them to keep going.
The second step is interest.
It is time to strengthen that bond once you have hooked the person. This time is used by marketers to address pain points. Show the learner how the course will help them. It is possible to highlight the program's alignment with the company's strategic goals.
Powerful visuals, videos, and other means can be used to highlight what's in it for me at the beginning of the learning experience.
The third step is to desire.
It's time to prove that the content adds value once you have their attention. This is the first step that distinguishes your course. Demonstrating that there is value for them is one way to remind them of the benefits.
The fourth step is action.
The call to action should tell the learner what to do. This shouldn't be hard to understand. Write it in a way that makes it urgent.
Final ThoughtsThe AIDA model can be a useful tool for creating a successful learning solution. By following these four stages, L&D professionals can ensure that their program is engaging, effective, and able to deliver measurable results. The key is to understand the target audience—their needs and motivations—and design the program accordingly. If used correctly, AIDA will motivate learners so they maximize the value of the overall learning experience.
The session: Time to Rethink: Designing Digital Training for the Modern Learner will take place at ATD TechKnowledge.