The fuseStarter i5 Principle is a 5-part series where we will explore and describe our trademarked website development principles.


As we described last time, what sets us at fuseStarter apart from others is that we are technicians and artists. Granted, it’s an odd mix, and according to many personality testing methods, being technical and creative are an exceptional case.

So, we are the exception.

We’ve crafted, through ongoing introspection and evaluation, a way to have creative freedom within a structure. This enables us to get things done efficiently and effectively. It maximizes our creative impact.

This structure we call our “i5 principle.” It’s our website design methodology. The i5 distills down to 5-points what we know to be key to delivering a great website.

In this 5-part blog series, we will cover these principles. The third is INTRIGUE.

i3: INTRIGUE – defn: arouse the curiosity or interest of; fascinate.

A great website will inform and impress enough to create a desire in the visitor to know more and engage further.

Now that we’ve provided our website visitor with just the right information in the right amount (see i1 – INFORM), and created a level of respect, admiration, and legitimacy (see i2 – IMPRESS) we need to take it a step further and cultivate INTRIGUE in them. 

From Surface Dweller to Deep Dive

Last time we discussed the goal of “crystallization,” where we are moving the visitor towards a clear picture of what they desire. The typical visitor is just “surface-dwelling.” We tell our clients they only have about 3 seconds to “set a hook” in a visitor (and that’s what the i5’s are all about). There’s a reason it’s called “browsing the web” using a “browser”! Most visitors are window-shopping.

So now that we’ve accomplished i1 and i2, our surface-dwelling visitors are ready to take a “deep-dive.” How do we do this? By creating INTRIGUE! When you are intrigued by something or someone, you aren’t satisfied with surface-dwelling – you want to know more, and you are willing to invest time and resources into that pursuit of knowledge.

To get here, you must arouse their curiosity. You must fascinate them. You’ve got them interested, now give them more.

But here’s where you need to be careful! In i1, we learned that information overload can drive people away, but here we want to give more information. So, what is required is a “tiering” of info. You need to drip info to them at the right times, in the right places on the website, and in the right format. It’s like serving a multi-course meal. You start with small appetizers, then move to salads and such, working up to the main course. Portions and presentation are the keys to doing this successfully. So it is here.

Shareables for Buy-In

As visitors progress down the marketing funnel, warming up and moving towards purchase, they will now start to seek out other’s opinions to validate their potential purchase/commitment. Most people don’t want to make decisions solo, and there is wisdom in a plurality of counselors. A wise person seeks out the advice and validation of other trusted folks they know. This is especially true the larger the purchase or commitment, and many organizations, this is policy (multiple bids, multiple sources). They are seeking “buy-in.”

So, what can you do to help this process?

Give your visitor an easy way to go seek that buy-in. Of course, they will share your website URL with those they want buy-in from. So, make it easy for them to share a link that will lead the “buy-in’ers” to the info. We can do this by creating specific pages that hold this more in-depth information. But one of the most powerful ways to help is to provide “sharables” – easy shared content that provides the info used to get that buy-in. This can be downloadable content such as marketing slicks or white papers, or links to videos or other social proofs such as testimonials, articles & reviews done by other sources (industry experts, podcasts, magazine reviews) or blog posts.

Make it easy for them to obtain “physical marketing” items. Something they can touch and pass around. Perhaps an info kit that comes in the mail, or even scheduling a call with a VP or the CEO.

Much of this type of content can be easy printed and distributed to the buy-in’ers. Make it easy as possible for them to consume the content. If you only drive people to a webpage, they may only surface-dwell and not take the deep dive.

Water your Seeds

In i2, we explored the idea of planting seeds. These seeds are ideas driven by reason and emotion. Some of these are the value of your offerings and obtaining their respect. There can be many more depending on your particular circumstances and target personas.

Whatever they are, now you need to start watering those seeds. Make them grow.

By providing depth through shareables and helping the visitor obtain buy-in, all those seeds are being watered and will grow. Your goal is the harvest!

Make the Semi-Finals

As we mentioned in i2, you are in a competition (the beauty of the free-market, driving excellence) against an unknown set of competitors. These are other companies, but also may be people in the visitors’ organization that may be adversarial to your offers or company, or even the need of these offerings. You may be fighting on multiple playing fields – price, quality, service, reputation, locality, or a host of other parameters. The more you know of these, the better you can compete.

But the main point is this – you are probably one of several vying for the close!

Now is the time to make sure you at least make the semi-finals! Do what you can here to eliminate others from the visitor’s mind. Get them scratched-off the list of options. It is here that creating INTRIGUE is absolutely key. Let your competition run dry at this point, while you are growing those seeds!

Whoever can better INFORM, IMPRESS, and now create INTRIGUE is on their way to winning the customer.

If you aren’t currently creating intrigue in visitors to your website, call us! You are wasting your website and driving customers away. We can help you fix that!

Cleaning Up the Web, One Site at a Time

We’d love to help you create a website that works! We can help you arouse curiosity and fascinate. We can teach you how to plant and grow those seeds!

Our goal is to clean up the web, one site at a time.

Is your website one of the greats, or one that needs to be “cleaned up?

We are fast, affordable, and easy to work with. Give as a call and let’s see how we can help you out!