Communication is important as it helps to understand the context being conveyed by others and helps to build relationships. It is the key to being able to cooperate in business and other aspects of social interaction. The communication process can be simple or complex as it is broken down into different parts.
To understand communication, it’s important to understand some key concepts of the communication process in general. The sender, or source, refers to the person who initiates communication by sending a message. The message refers to the content that is being communicated to the receiver. The receiver is the person to whom the message is directed and intended for. The sender and receiver may also be referred to as the participants.
The interactive model of communication refers to the actual process of communication as messages are sent back and forth between the sender and receiver. The cyclical process includes a source that sends the message to the receiver and a reaction from the receiver in the form of feedback, which is the message that is then received by the original sender.
A simple conversation over the phone is the most basic example of the interactive model. It consists of two participants that are both consistently sending and receiving messages based on reactions from previous messages. This interaction process also considers the fields of experience of both participants, which include the knowledge and values of each of the participants and may impact the meaning of the messages.
The interactive model is more complex than the linear model, as it considers the feedback given by the receiver of the message. Feedback refers to the reaction to the message which may be verbal or nonverbal. It is the most critical component of this model.
For example, if the sender makes a joke in reference to a previous conversation, the feedback might be as simple as a smile or laughter, or it could be an actual response back in reference to the subject matter mentioned in that other conversation. The interactive model also incorporates both physical context and psychological context and considers how these both can impact the messages.
- What is Interactive and Communication?
- What is the Advantage of Interactive Communication?
- What are the 5 Types of Interactive Media?
- What are the Best Examples of Interactive e-learning?
- What is the Interactive Communication Process?
- What is the Most Popular Method of Interactive Communication?
- Why is Online Communication Important?
- What is the Purpose of Interactive Activities?
- What are Examples of Interactive Features?
What is Interactive and Communication?
The interactive model (also known as the convergence model) deals with the exchange of ideas and messages taking place both ways from sender to receiver and vice-versa. The communication process takes place between humans or machines in both verbal or non-verbal ways. This is a relatively new model of communication for new technologies like the web.
The interactive Model of Communication requires different following components for the communication process to work:
- Encoder-Source-Decoder: The person who originates a message is the source. The encoder and decoder are the same person/source. The second source is also encoder as well as decoder. The source acts as an encoder while sending the message and as decoder while receiving the message.
The second source decodes the message, then originates another message, encodes it and sends it to the first source. The source is known to be encoder and decoder during the act of encoding and decoding.
- Message: Message is the information sent during the interaction.
- Feedback: The decoder forms a second message after receiving the first which is known as feedback.
- Field of Experience: Field of experience is the experience and knowledge that the source possess which affects the message formation and interpretation. For example, the source’s culture, social behavior, etc.
The Internet can be taken as the best way of interactive communication as the receiver can give feedback even in newspapers and books. The Internet has increased the opportunity of interactive communication and it is still evolving.
Human-computer interaction is also now considered as interactive communication as the model is circular where the sender’s interchange every time. Social media, interactive marketing and user-generated contents, ATM machines, online shopping, chat rooms, etc are other examples of the interactive communication model.
What is the Advantage of Interactive Communication?
Effective client communication is a key factor in growing your brand, increasing your leads, and satisfying your customers. However, it’s not as easy as it once was. Having a strategic plan in place is necessary in order to gain critical communication skills and be able to effectively get in front of your customers.
Rather than focus on tips and tactics, it might be time to drastically rethink your channels of communication. Interactive communication is a method that fits well into today’s modern world and can help your business become a more effective customer communication brand.
Interactive communication stands out from other forms of communication as the most effective type of communication you can use in your organization.
The biggest factor behind the success of interactive communication is the feedback loop it creates. Traditional forms of communication don’t allow the receiver of the message to reply back to the sender.
That means that if the message didn’t resonate with audiences or didn’t answer the question that was asked, there is no way for your brand to get that information back.
Additionally, the ability to standardize and template out responses for interactive communication makes it easy for businesses to manage on their own end.
For example, if you know that a common response to a message asked by your chatbot is a request to find the nearest location, you can automate the response to improve the flow of your bot interactions.
Other benefits of an interactive communication strategy include:
- Continuous updates and communication with audiences.
- Transparency with your communication.
- Additional alignment opportunities.
- Quickly being able to understand if a message is received or understood.
- Sharing information with large audiences.
What are the 5 Types of Interactive Media?
Interactive media is a method of communication in which the program’s outputs depend on the user’s inputs, and the user’s inputs, in turn, affect the program’s outputs. Simply put, it refers to the different ways in which people process and share information or how they communicate with one another.
Interactive media allows people to connect with others, whether that’s people or organizations, by making them active participants in the media they consume through text, graphics, video, and sound.
The purpose of interactive media is to engage the user and interact with them in a way that non-interactive media does not. Traditional forms of media, such as television and radio, originally required no active participation. These forms of media made consumers more passive, giving them no real way to navigate through their experiences except for the ability to change the channel.
But with the advent of the internet in the 1990s, that began to change. As technology developed, consumers were given different tools through which interactive media was presented. Access to the internet went from an expensive utility once available only through dial-up to a wireless tool accessible by the touch of a finger.
Computers and laptops became household item and a necessity in the workplace, and smartphones began making interacting with media easy and convenient.
As technology becomes more advanced, interactive media will become even more immersive, broadening what people are able to do. After all, smartphones and the internet are fairly recent inventions.
Unlike traditional media, interactive media is meant to enhance a user’s experience. In order to do so, an interactive medium will require one more of the following elements:
- Moving images and graphics
- Digital Text
A user can participate by manipulating one or more of these elements during their experience, something traditional media does not offer.
In today’s digital era, people are surrounded by interactive media. Everywhere you look, you will find an example of this form of communication.
- Social networking websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are examples of interactive media. These sites use graphics and text to allow users to share photos and information about themselves, chat, and play games.
- Video games are another type of interactive media. Players use controllers to respond to visual and sound cues on the screen that are generated by a computer program.
- If you have a mobile device like a smartphone, you use apps. These forms of interactive media can help you figure out the weather, direct you to the desired location, choose and respond to news stories in which you are interested, and allow you to shop. The possibilities are endless.
- Another form of interactive media is virtual reality (VR). VR gives users a completely immersive experience, allowing them to delve into a world that is an almost carbon copy of reality. The only difference is that this world is digital.
What are the Best Examples of Interactive e-learning?
1. Question pools
Assessments are often critical, especially where compliance is concerned. But how do you make sure they test your learners thoroughly enough? And how do you reduce the likelihood of sharing answers? Question pools are a great solution to making corporate e-learning effective for all.
In this pharmaceutical compliance test, question pools are used to create a robust assessment. Question pools mean that when a learner retakes the test, they’re unlikely to see the same questions again. This helps ensure learners truly understand the content – they won’t be able to simply choose a different answer on a second attempt. It also makes it harder for learners to share answers as it is unlikely their colleagues will have been posed the same set of questions.
Example of question pools:
Question pools are sets of questions designed to be drawn from randomly during assessments to ensure variability and prevent cheating. Here’s an example of question pools for an online history quiz:
Topic: World History Quiz
Question Pool 1 – Ancient Civilizations:
- What river is often referred to as the “cradle of civilization”?
- Which ancient civilization built the Great Pyramid of Giza?
- The Code of Hammurabi is associated with which ancient empire?
- The Roman Colosseum was primarily used for what purpose?
- Which civilization developed a writing system known as hieroglyphics?
Question Pool 2 – Medieval Times:
- The Magna Carta was signed in which year?
- The Battle of Hastings in 1066 was fought between which two leaders?
- The feudal system was characterized by what hierarchical structure?
- The Black Death pandemic originated from which continent?
- Joan of Arc played a significant role in which medieval conflict?
Question Pool 3 – Renaissance and Enlightenment:
- Who painted the Mona Lisa?
- The printing press was invented by whom, greatly impacting the spread of knowledge?
- The Renaissance period is often associated with a revival of interest in which culture?
- The Enlightenment emphasized the importance of what concepts?
- Which philosopher is known for advocating the separation of powers in government?
Question Pool 4 – Industrial Revolution:
- In which industry did the Industrial Revolution begin?
- Who is credited with inventing the cotton gin?
- The steam engine played a pivotal role in what aspect of society?
- Which city was at the heart of the textile industry during the Industrial Revolution?
- Child labor and poor working conditions were common issues during this period.
Question Pool 5 – Modern History:
- The Treaty of Versailles ended which major conflict?
- Who was the leader of the Soviet Union during the Cuban Missile Crisis?
- The Berlin Wall, built in 1961, divided which city?
- The fall of the apartheid system occurred in which country?
- The term “Cold War” refers to the tension between which two superpowers?
In an online assessment, a certain number of questions can be randomly drawn from each question pool to create a unique quiz for each student. This approach ensures that students face a variety of questions and prevents them from sharing answers easily.
This e-learning example is a great learning approach for:
- Business critical content that needs to be tested, such as compliance rules and regulations
- Audiences who need to prove a thorough understanding of a subject before starting a particular task
2. Gamified scenario
Creating a sense of play in your corporate e-learning is great for engagement – and easy to achieve through gamification. High-pressure scenarios like the sales simulation below are the perfect partner for game-like approaches.
You can appeal to the learner’s competitive spirit by rewarding good decisions or completion of e-learning tasks with points, as well as upping the pressure with a timer. With this example of e-learning, learners are incentivized to apply their skills correctly, making the content more likely to stick in the learner’s mind when handling a real situation.
Gamified scenario example:
A great learning approach for:
- Learners who are motivated by competition
- Content that involves high-pressure scenarios – gamification is great for replicating this sense of pressure – or less serious topics that you can have a bit of fun with
3. Quick onboarding
New starters have a lot to take in those first few days in their role, but you can ease the learning curve by providing quick, focused overviews. Single scrolling pages are great for upskilling learners on key tasks quickly – they can easily refer back to the content on their phones.
In this example of digital learning, practical tasks are broken down into clear, simple steps, with video demonstrations and checklists providing further support. In-page navigation makes it easy for learners to complete each section of the page.
Quick onboarding example:
Here’s a quick example of an onboarding process for new employees:
Process: Employee Onboarding
Objective: To successfully integrate new employees into the company, provide them with necessary information, and set them up for success in their roles.
- Welcome and Orientation:
- HR welcomes new employees on their first day, provides a brief overview of the company culture and values.
- Conduct an office tour, introducing them to key areas and colleagues.
- Paperwork and Documentation:
- Complete necessary paperwork, including tax forms, benefits enrollment, and employment contracts.
- Set up company email, access to internal systems, and security badges.
- Introduction to Company Policies:
- Conduct a comprehensive overview of company policies, including code of conduct, ethics, and workplace guidelines.
- Meet the Team:
- Organize introductions with team members and key stakeholders.
- Foster a sense of camaraderie and collaboration.
- Role and Responsibilities:
- Clearly outline the employee’s job responsibilities, expectations, and performance objectives.
- Provide a job description and any relevant training materials.
- Training and Development:
- Schedule training sessions on company tools, software, and processes.
- Provide access to online learning resources or courses if applicable.
- Company Culture and Values:
- Share information about the company’s mission, vision, and values.
- Highlight the unique aspects of the company culture.
- Performance Feedback:
- Explain the performance evaluation process and the frequency of reviews.
- Set initial goals and expectations for the first few months.
- Benefits and Perks:
- Provide details about employee benefits, health insurance, retirement plans, and any other perks.
- Explain how to access and utilize these benefits.
- Technology Setup:
- Set up employees with the necessary hardware, software, and tools for their roles.
- Provide IT support for any technical issues.
- Company Communication:
- Explain internal communication tools, channels, and the frequency of company updates.
- Highlight how to stay informed about company news and announcements.
- Safety and Security:
- Conduct a safety briefing, explaining emergency procedures and protocols.
- Inform employees about security measures and access controls.
- Mentoring or Buddy Program:
- Assign a mentor or buddy to guide the new employee through their initial days.
- Encourage questions, provide support, and facilitate integration.
- Feedback and Q&A:
- Regularly check in with the new employee to address any questions or concerns.
- Seek feedback on the onboarding process and make improvements if needed.
- Follow-Up and Ongoing Support:
- Continue to provide ongoing support, feedback, and opportunities for growth.
- Monitor progress and ensure a smooth transition into the new role.
- Smooth Transition: The onboarding process ensures a seamless transition for new employees into the company.
- Productivity: New employees can quickly become productive with the right training and resources.
- Engagement: A well-structured onboarding process fosters engagement and a sense of belonging.
- Compliance: All required paperwork and documentation are completed efficiently.
- Cultural Alignment: New employees understand and align with the company’s values and culture.
By following a structured onboarding process, companies can set a positive tone for new employees’ experiences, help them feel welcome, and accelerate their integration into the organization.
A great learning approach for:
- New hires or contractors who need to get up to speed with tasks and equipment quickly
- Short, focused processes with practical steps to follow
4. Dive into the detail of a process
Processes can’t always be covered in a quick overview. Sometimes you’ve got to dive into the detail – and that’s where a clear menu structure becomes crucial. Breaking the details of a process down into manageable chunks or corporate e-learning tasks means learners can walk through the steps one at a time.
In the digital learning example below you can see how adding scenarios to this structure helps learners to practice and embed the learning, getting them up to speed quickly.
In-depth process example:
Certainly! Let’s explore an in-depth process example: “Creating a Digital Marketing Campaign.”
Process: Creating a Digital Marketing Campaign
Objective: To plan, develop, and execute a digital marketing campaign to promote a new product launch.
- Identify Campaign Goals: Determine the main objectives of the campaign, such as increasing brand awareness, driving website traffic, or boosting product sales.
- Define Target Audience: Clearly define the target audience for the campaign based on demographics, interests, behaviors, and needs.
- Market Research: Conduct research to understand market trends, competitors, and customer preferences. Identify opportunities and challenges.
- Set Budget and Resources: Allocate a budget for the campaign and allocate resources such as personnel, tools, and platforms.
- Choose Digital Channels: Select the digital channels that align with the campaign goals and audience. This could include social media, email marketing, content marketing, and more.
- Craft Messaging: Develop compelling and consistent messaging that resonates with the target audience. Create value propositions, taglines, and key messages.
- Content Creation: Produce high-quality content for the campaign, including blog posts, videos, graphics, infographics, and landing pages.
- Design Visuals: Create visually appealing graphics and visuals that match the campaign’s theme and branding.
- Develop Landing Pages: Design dedicated landing pages for the campaign with clear calls to action (CTAs) and conversion-focused elements.
- Plan Social Media Strategy: Develop a content calendar for social media platforms. Craft engaging posts, schedule updates, and consider paid advertising options.
- Email Marketing Plan: Create an email marketing strategy with personalized, segmented campaigns. Craft attention-grabbing subject lines and compelling content.
- Implement SEO: Optimize campaign-related content for search engines using relevant keywords, meta descriptions, and header tags.
- Paid Advertising: If applicable, set up and manage pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaigns on platforms like Google Ads or social media.
- Engagement and Interactivity: Plan interactive elements such as contests, quizzes, or live Q&A sessions to engage the audience.
- Launch and Monitor: Launch the campaign and closely monitor performance metrics. Track website visits, engagement rates, conversion rates, and social media interactions.
- Adjust and Optimize: Continuously analyze the campaign’s performance data. Make adjustments based on the insights gathered to optimize results.
- Feedback and Analysis: Collect feedback from customers, stakeholders, and team members. Analyze what worked well and what could be improved.
- Report and Presentation: Prepare a comprehensive report on the campaign’s outcomes, including key metrics, successes, challenges, and lessons learned. Present the findings to stakeholders.
- Structured Approach: The process provides a clear roadmap for creating a successful digital marketing campaign.
- Effective Resource Allocation: Allocate resources efficiently to various campaign elements.
- Consistency: Ensure consistent messaging and branding across all campaign materials.
- Measurable Results: Regular monitoring and analysis allow for data-driven decisions and optimization.
- Learning and Improvement: Analyzing results helps in refining future campaigns based on past experiences.
By following a systematic process for creating a digital marketing campaign, organizations can increase the chances of a successful product launch, reach their target audience effectively, and achieve their campaign goals.
A great learning approach for:
- Processes that require detailed explanations, visual descriptions or have multiple steps
- Audiences that need to know a process inside out
5. Microlearning e-learning example for skill development
When your employees are developing their skills, theory isn’t enough. To improve, learners need to reflect on their current skill level, understand the practical steps they need to put into action, and commit to practicing on the job. This example on how to manage remote teams shows how corporate elearning can support this process of professional development.
After kicking off with an attention grabbing statistic about remote teams, 5 top tips are presented. Crucially, learners don’t just read the tips; they are encouraged to reflect on which ones they want to implement in their teams. At the end of the digital learning, each learner creates their own action plan, committing to put their new knowledge into action.
Skill development example:
A great learning approach for:
- Managers or confident employees who want to take ownership of how they develop their skills
- Skills-based training where there’s not just one ‘right way’ of doing things
6. Scenario-based learning at scale
When working with a high volume of learners, small tweaks can make all the difference. By giving learners a range of choices to explore, this investigative scenario feels more relevant and personal to each individual. By allowing them to ‘work’ a case and draw their own conclusions they are drawn through the story and have autonomy in how they approach their learning.
Scenario-based e-learning example:
Scenario-based e-learning involves presenting learners with realistic scenarios that they might encounter in their roles and asking them to make decisions or solve problems based on those scenarios. Here’s an example of how scenario-based e-learning could be implemented for customer service training:
Scenario: Customer Service Training for a Retail Store
Objective: To train retail store employees in effective customer service skills using scenario-based e-learning.
- Introduction: Introduce the course by explaining the importance of excellent customer service and how scenarios will be used to enhance learning.
- Scenario 1: Dealing with a Difficult Customer Present a scenario where a customer is upset due to a product issue. The learner is asked to choose the most appropriate response from multiple-choice options.
- Immediate Feedback: Provide immediate feedback on the chosen response, explaining why it was a good or not-so-good choice in that situation.
- Scenario 2: Assisting with Product Selection Present a scenario where a customer is looking for a specific type of product. The learner is asked to recommend the best product based on the customer’s needs.
- Interactive Choices: Allow learners to interact with the scenario by selecting products from a virtual shelf and explaining their choices.
- Scenario 3: Handling a Return Request Present a scenario where a customer wants to return a product. The learner needs to follow the store’s return policy and process.
- Video Demonstrations: Include short video clips showing actual customer service interactions that demonstrate the correct approach.
- Scenario 4: Cross-Selling and Upselling Present a scenario where a customer is interested in a particular product, and the learner is asked to suggest complementary items to enhance the customer’s experience.
- Decision Points: Provide decision points within scenarios, allowing learners to make choices at critical moments and observe the consequences.
- Scenario 5: Multilingual Customer Interaction Present a scenario where a customer speaks a different language. The learner is asked to use communication skills to overcome the language barrier.
- Reflection and Discussion: After each scenario, encourage learners to reflect on their choices and participate in discussions about alternative approaches.
- Scenario 6: Time Management and Prioritization Present a scenario where the store is busy, and the learner needs to prioritize tasks efficiently while ensuring excellent customer service.
- Feedback and Progress Tracking: Provide a progress tracker to help learners see their improvement and areas that may need further attention.
- Scenario 7: Team Collaboration Present a scenario where a customer issue requires collaboration with a colleague. The learner needs to communicate effectively to resolve the situation.
- Conclusion: Summarize the key takeaways from the scenarios and emphasize the practical skills learned.
- Real-World Application: Scenarios simulate real-life situations, preparing learners for on-the-job challenges.
- Engagement: Interactive scenarios keep learners engaged and motivated to make informed decisions.
- Critical Thinking: Scenarios encourage learners to think critically and problem-solve in a controlled environment.
- Feedback Loop: Immediate feedback reinforces good choices and helps correct misconceptions.
- Skill Transfer: Learners can apply skills learned directly to their customer service interactions.
By immersing learners in scenario-based e-learning, organizations can ensure that their employees are well-equipped with practical skills and confidence to excel in their roles, especially in customer-facing positions.
A great learning approach for:
- Large organizations with multiple or diverse audiences in different environments
- Addressing nuanced topics where learners need to see several viewpoints. Think ethics training, discrimination or health and safety.
We’re all familiar with assessments at the end of e-learning modules to test understanding, but have you tried an assessment at the start to determine who needs to learn what?
This e-learning modules example shows how an upfront quiz can be used to show and hide relevant follow-up content based on the questions that a user passes or fails. Adaptive content like this is win-win for you and your audience. You can reduce overall seat time while retaining confidence that everyone sees the learning content they need, and your users won’t have their time wasted on content they already know.
Example of an adaptive assessment:
An adaptive assessment is a type of assessment that adjusts the difficulty level of questions based on the learner’s responses. Here’s an example of an adaptive assessment scenario for a math test:
Scenario: Adaptive Math Assessment
Objective: To assess a student’s math skills using an adaptive assessment that tailors the difficulty of questions to the student’s performance level.
- Initial Question: The assessment starts with a question of moderate difficulty to gauge the student’s baseline skill level.
- Response Evaluation: Based on the student’s response to the first question, the assessment system determines whether the student’s performance is above, at, or below their grade level.
- Difficulty Adjustment: If the student answers the initial question correctly, the next question is slightly more challenging. If they answer incorrectly, the next question is adjusted to be slightly easier.
- Question Types: The assessment includes various question types, such as multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, and problem-solving, to assess different math concepts.
- Topic Coverage: The assessment covers a range of math topics, including arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and statistics.
- Adaptive Algorithm: The assessment system uses an adaptive algorithm that analyzes the student’s responses and adjusts the difficulty level dynamically.
- Thresholds for Advancement: As the student answers questions correctly, the difficulty continues to increase. However, if they reach a certain threshold of consecutive correct answers, the system may introduce more challenging concepts.
- Targeted Challenges: For proficient students, the system introduces more complex questions to challenge them and assess their higher-order thinking skills.
- Support for Struggling Students: If a student is consistently answering incorrectly, the system provides hints, explanations, or additional practice questions to help them improve.
- Real-time Feedback: The assessment provides real-time feedback after each question, explaining the correct answer and offering insights into the student’s performance.
- Completion and Analysis: The assessment continues until a sufficient number of questions have been answered to provide a comprehensive assessment of the student’s math skills.
- Personalized Assessment: Adaptive assessments provide a tailored experience based on the individual’s skill level.
- Efficiency: Students don’t waste time on questions that are too easy or too difficult, leading to a more efficient assessment process.
- Accurate Skill Evaluation: The assessment provides a more accurate representation of the student’s skill level by adjusting difficulty on the fly.
- Engagement: Challenging questions keep advanced students engaged, while supportive hints assist struggling learners.
- Identifying Learning Gaps: The assessment reveals specific areas where a student may need additional instruction.
By utilizing adaptive assessments, educators can gain a deeper understanding of students’ strengths and weaknesses, and students can receive a more accurate evaluation of their skills while being engaged in a personalized learning experience.
A great learning approach for:
- Broad audience groups with a wide range of prior knowledge.
- Content that needs to be tested or revised regularly. Think compliance, policies, and procedures.
8. Branching – Choose your own adventure
Putting learners in the driving seat is a great way of increasing their engagement with an e-learning experience. ‘Choose your own adventure’ style scenarios like the example below immerse users in a story and allow them to make decisions that control the outcome. This approach allows users to learn through experiencing consequences rather than being informed of them.
This video-based e-learning example shows powerful video scenarios interspersed with decision points and the ability to see the impact of your decisions. Remember that audio or text-based scenarios would work just as well.
A great learning approach for:
- Audiences that respond well to experiential, active participation.
- Content with real-life decisions and impact. Think soft skills and ethical dilemmas.
9. ‘On-the-job’ e-learning example for fast-paced environments
Learning shouldn’t be separated from the day job. Short, snappy performance support resources designed to be used while working can keep the learning alive. They often go down well with learners too, as they’re designed to be succinct and useful above all else. Well-chosen and paced interactivity makes the content digestible and maximizes knowledge retention.
This retail e-learning example shows how a quick interactive resource could be used for just-in-time support for sales advisors working on a shop floor.
Performance support elearning example:
Performance support in e-learning involves providing learners with resources and tools to help them apply their learning directly in their job roles. Here’s an example of how performance support could be implemented in an e-learning context:
Scenario: Sales Training for a New Product
Objective: To provide sales representatives with performance support tools that enable them to effectively apply the knowledge gained from a new product training e-learning course to real-world sales interactions.
- Learning Module: Develop an e-learning module that covers the features, benefits, and selling points of the new product. Use interactive elements such as quizzes, videos, and simulations to engage learners.
- Job Aid Creation: Create a digital job aid, such as a product information sheet, that summarizes key details about the product, including specifications, pricing, and frequently asked questions.
- Interactive Scenario Simulations: Include interactive scenarios in the e-learning module where learners can practice responding to customer inquiries and objections related to the new product.
- Quick Reference Guides: Design quick reference guides that highlight the main talking points for different customer personas or use cases. These guides can be easily accessed on learners’ devices during sales meetings.
- Interactive Sales Playbooks: Develop interactive sales playbooks that guide learners through step-by-step sales processes. Include decision trees, objection-handling techniques, and closing strategies.
- Video Demonstrations: Provide video demonstrations of successful sales interactions featuring experienced salespeople. These videos can showcase effective communication and objection-handling techniques.
- Sales Simulation Tools: Offer access to virtual sales simulation tools that allow learners to practice selling the new product in realistic scenarios without real-world consequences.
- Peer-to-Peer Knowledge Sharing: Implement a discussion forum or chat platform where sales representatives can share tips, success stories, and best practices related to selling the new product.
- Mobile App Integration: Develop a mobile app that houses all the performance support tools, making it convenient for sales reps to access information and resources on-the-go.
- Gamification Elements: Add gamified elements, such as quizzes and challenges, to encourage learners to engage with the performance support resources and reinforce their learning.
- Performance Metrics Tracking: Integrate tracking mechanisms to monitor how often sales representatives use the performance support tools and their impact on sales performance.
- On-the-Job Application: Performance support tools enable immediate application of knowledge in real-world scenarios.
- Consistency: Ensure that all sales representatives deliver consistent and accurate information about the new product.
- Confidence Building: By having access to relevant resources, sales reps feel more confident in their ability to address customer inquiries.
- Continuous Learning: Performance support encourages ongoing learning as sales reps engage with resources as needed.
- Reduced Learning Curve: Performance support tools help shorten the time it takes for sales reps to become proficient with the new product.
- Adaptability: Performance support tools can be updated and expanded to address evolving challenges or changes in the product.
By providing performance support tools alongside traditional e-learning courses, organizations can ensure that learners not only acquire knowledge but also have the means to apply that knowledge effectively in their day-to-day roles.
A great learning approach for:
- Audiences that have a lot to remember and are likely to need reminders. Audiences that respond well to learning ‘in the moment’.
- Theoretical content that needs to be made practical; think new procedures or change management. Or factual content that learners might need refreshers on; think product or systems training.
10. Comparing opinions
Adding an element of social sharing and comparison to a learning experience appeals to the natural curiosity in all of us. Social polls are an effective way of sharing users’ responses with each other in an impactful – yet anonymous – way.
This example shows social polls that compare the audience’s opinions as a way of showing the grey areas in a subject. Social polls also make great attention grabbers at the start of a module or an effective way of making a quiz competitive by sharing correct and incorrect stats after each question.
Live social polling in elearning example:
Live social polling in e-learning refers to the integration of real-time polling or surveying tools into online learning platforms to engage learners, gather instant feedback, and enhance interactive experiences. Here’s an example of how live social polling could be implemented in an e-learning scenario:
Scenario: Enhancing an Online Webinar on Marketing Strategies
Objective: To engage participants in an online webinar about marketing strategies by using live social polling to gather opinions, promote active participation, and encourage discussions.
- Platform Selection: Choose an e-learning platform that supports live polling features. This could be a webinar platform like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or a dedicated e-learning platform.
- Poll Creation: Create a series of relevant poll questions related to marketing strategies. These questions could cover topics like target audience, social media platforms, content types, and advertising methods.
- Engagement Strategy: Introduce the webinar by explaining that live polling will be used to gauge participants’ opinions and experiences throughout the session.
- Polling Intervals: Integrate live polls at strategic points during the webinar. For example, after introducing a marketing concept, launch a poll to assess participants’ familiarity with the topic.
- Immediate Feedback: Display poll results in real time. Discuss the results and provide explanations to help participants understand the collective opinions.
- Discussion Encouragement: Use poll results as a springboard for discussions. Encourage participants to share their thoughts, experiences, and insights based on the poll outcomes.
- Case Studies: Present real-world marketing case studies and ask participants to vote on the most effective strategies or solutions. Use the poll results to facilitate group discussions on the reasoning behind their choices.
- Comparative Analysis: Use polls to compare different marketing approaches. For instance, ask participants to vote on whether they prefer traditional advertising or digital marketing for a specific target audience.
- Open-Ended Questions: Integrate open-ended poll questions that encourage participants to provide short written responses. This can spark deeper discussions and personalized insights.
- Summarize Insights: As the webinar progresses, summarize the key insights gathered from the live polls. Highlight trends, contrasting opinions, and noteworthy perspectives.
- Q&A Sessions: Incorporate live polling during Q&A sessions to prioritize the most pressing questions based on participants’ votes.
- Wrap-up and Action Points: At the end of the webinar, review the main takeaways from the live polls. Discuss actionable steps that participants can implement in their marketing strategies.
- Engagement: Live polling keeps participants engaged by involving them actively in the learning process.
- Instant Feedback: Real-time feedback provides insights into participants’ understanding and opinions.
- Discussion Facilitation: Poll results encourage meaningful discussions and peer-to-peer learning.
- Data Collection: Collected poll data can be analyzed for future improvements in content and teaching strategies.
- Interactive Learning: Live polling transforms the webinar into an interactive experience rather than a passive lecture.
By incorporating live social polling in e-learning scenarios, educators can create a more dynamic and engaging learning environment while gathering valuable insights from participants in real time.
A great learning approach for:
- Audience groups that you’re trying to unite and get to know each other better, or competitive audiences that would enjoy seeing how they compare with others.
- Content with grey areas and no ‘right or wrong’.
What is the Interactive Communication Process?
Starting the process of adding interactive communication to your current strategies requires a few key steps.
By following this general pattern, you can start to implement an interactive mindset into your brand and grow your areas of communication with customers, prospects, and leads.
Step 1: Examine Your Current Methods of Communication
Before beginning, you first need to understand the current methods of communication you use in your everyday business messages.
If you read the previous types of communication and recognized them, that’s a great place to start.
By completing an audit of your communication channels, you can start to see if you are currently employing any types of interactive communication and notice the patterns in your communication methods.
Are you missing critical feedback in key areas of your business? Where do customers go when they need to talk to you?
Answering these questions can help your audit run smoothly.
Step 2: Make Sure The Information is Simplified
Automating and standardizing the content you use in interactive communication is key. However, you also want to make sure that the information is easily digestible. Making clean paths of communication and planning out scripts and templates will simplify things.
Step 3: Monitor and Optimize Your Interactive Communication
There is always room for communication improvement. Monitor the interactive communication channels and see how they work with your brand.
Are you getting any feedback or messages? Do you have the bandwidth to answer questions? And is it possible to make things easier for your team?
What is the Most Popular Method of Interactive Communication?
Interactivity through social media, smartphones and other visual aids increases awareness, productivity and collaboration. The effectiveness of interactive communication depends on several elements, including message, sender, receiver, medium and feedback.
In the digital age it’s no longer necessary to be in the same geographical location to participate interactively and multimedia plays a big role in redefining communication. Multimedia includes audio, video, graphics, text, animation, or any combination of these. These applications may be used at work, school, or home and are accessible at the user’s discretion.
This makes multimedia a longer-lasting alternative to traditional verbal interaction, in that the message has no finite beginning or end. Multimedia is more powerful than other types of nonverbal communication — such as posters and books — because it integrates components allowing the recipient to provide feedback.
Business and Education
Advertising is a common type of business communication — whether it’s influencing television viewers to buy products, soliciting magazine surveys or running promotional giveaways on containers. Smartphone applications and scanning devices now make it easier than ever for manufacturers to provide consumers with useful information. Wikis — fact-based interactive Web communities — are being used more in the classroom. This approach to education uses collaboration to facilitate rich learning environments for students and educators alike.
The Social Web
Social web communication values creation and collaboration while facilitating relationships and community building. The social web has implicit ties to education and business because it is more than just a medium — it’s a state of mind.
So called crowdsourcing — harvesting feedback from a large integrated user base — originated on the social web and drives much of commerce today. The Web is also facilitating a new type of education-based interactivity, calling on a potentially limitless stable of contributors to create and maintain an immense body of information.
Interaction with Robots
People communicate to express their emotions, but we also communicate out of need — instruction being one of these. In the late 1980s, one Stanford University professor studied interactive communication with robots to explore the relationship between situational context, interpretation and general understanding.
Verbal instruction achieved specific concrete actions, but expanding the robot’s language based on changing scenarios was a challenge. Robots are much different today, in that they can share their operator’s perception of the surrounding environment and act intuitively based on prior communication.
Why is Online Communication Important?
Online communication is any type of verbal, written or any other visualized interaction between people that happens on the Internet. Since this kind of conversation has a short history (compared to the aforementioned types), sometimes it’s hard to navigate the dos and don’ts of it and to choose the most suitable communicative media.
There are plenty of tools for online communication. Here is a list of the most frequently used, both in private life and the professional environment:
- Chat rooms — online spaces for written and verbal interaction where people communicate tête-à-tête or in groups
- Emails — technology that allows users to compose and send messages and files to other users or companies
- Forums — websites for chatting on specific topics
- Online forms — a form of communication for requesting information
- Instant messages — now one of the most popular interactive media: quick; easy to install and use
- Comments on websites and forums — integral to the culture of online interaction
- Social networks — an essential part of the work and leisure routine of a modern person. Social media lets us interact verbally and non-verbally, be it simply in the form of a photo or a video, or a post backed up by a lengthy message.
- VoIP or Voice over IP — a way to make voice phone calls using the Internet: cheap and accessible in almost any location of the world and mostly used by companies as they integrate VoIP for call centers.
To provide a decent communicative experience for the people you want to talk to, it’s not enough just to properly use the above-mentioned tools. Since people don’t see you and some haven’t even met you, it’s useful to employ certain communication skills to make conversations effective.
We have prepared some rules and techniques to follow that will help you build efficient communication and avoid rude mistakes while interacting online.
1. Following Digital Etiquette
- Applying the same standards as for the public space is a crucial rule when meeting someone, both online and in person. Being polite and friendly is as important as ever.
- Refraining from abuse or harassment is a must for professionals. It is important that everyone feels safe and welcome.
- Before having an online chat or call, learn about the country your companion comes from. Acknowledging cultural differences is very useful so as not to accidentally offend or hurt feelings.
- Being inclusive and open-minded is also a worthwhile characteristic in online communication. Acceptance and impartiality are signs of a professional with well-developed soft skills.
- Respect everyone’s privacy, and don’t call or send messages on holidays, weekends, or late at night. If you have to, don’t expect an immediate reply.
- Avoid inflammatory and empty talk during online chats. It’s distracting and a waste of time.
As you can see, the same rules that apply in offline interactions can easily be implemented into the online format. With some more practice and strategies, you will be great at it.
2. Using Clear and Concise Language
- For effective communication, improving grammar, sentence structure, and overall writing skills is very important. Imagine you read a message with tons of mistakes. What would you think? Disrespectful attitude, right?
- Use the right tone of voice (formal/non-formal) when it’s appropriate. There is a difference between speaking to your colleagues in a non-formal chat atmosphere and speaking with them during a meeting or within a business letter.
- Structure long messages for a better understanding. It’s critical to the sender that you compose the information in a way that will be comfortable to read.
- Avoid jargon with people who don’t understand it. For example, when you want to hire developers and have no technical background, it will be hard for you to understand each other, as you don’t speak the same business language. And vice versa, when you are talking to a new employee who has no previous experience in your company’s niche, you should pay attention to your language and check whether you send clear messages.
The language you use when communicating is more important than your status, so if you want to be respectful towards the people you talk to, improve it to achieve efficient and highly productive conversations.
3. Convey the Right Tone
- To start the communication with a positive note, use humor and set a positive mood. This is especially important when it’s your first interaction with someone, which can be a stressful experience. Help your recipient overcome their anxieties with a calm and welcoming tone.
- Avoid sarcasm with people who don’t know you well, especially in text communication. It is off-putting to hear or read something unpleasant or even offensive wrapped in the form of a joke. Withdraw this kind of tone, and the people you chat with will be happy to work with you.
The tone of the conversation is as important as the language and words you use. Choose it carefully to earn better results from your online collaborations.
4. Provide Thorough Responses
- Acknowledge people by substituting nods and humming with a couple of words. It is the more respectful and professional way to reply shortly without any offense.
- Provide direct answers to W questions. Inquiries like “what,” “where,” and “why” should be answered straightly and clearly. Responding to them helps people understand the basics of the subject you are talking about.
- Provide detailed feedback to everyone who is waiting for it. Sometimes, saying that something isn’t suitable is not enough. For example, if you’re in the process of hiring developers and a dedicated specialist has checked test assignments, ask them to tell you why an assignment was or wasn’t successful, so you can convey it to a potential hire, especially if there are negative results or use a Test Management Software to review their result’s. If you’re seeking more info about communication and other aspects of hiring software developers you can find it in YouTeam’s article.
Giving detailed responses and feedback to the people who are listening to you is a professional way to earn the trust of those you work with. And trust is everything when building a product or a team.
What is the Purpose of Interactive Activities?
Interactive activities are an integral part of social-emotional learning. The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) states that “learning is an intrinsically social and interactive process: it takes place in collaboration with one’s teachers, in the company of one’s peers, and with the support of one’s family.”
Active and participatory lessons encourage children to learn social-emotional skills firsthand. For the most effective social-emotional skill development, it helps if activities are not limited to school but are also extended into family and community.
Children who are socially and emotionally competent are skilled in five core areas: self-awareness, responsible decision-making, emotion management, social awareness, and healthy relationship building. By developing these skills through engaging in activities, children are better equipped to stay on track to their goals, face potential challenges, and resist negative peer influence to engage in risky behaviors.
What types of activities can be incorporated into lessons to develop social-emotional skills? Cooperative learning designs that promote bonding—such as games, role-plays, and skits—are a great way to reinforce what students have learned. Through hands-on experience, students can practice these essential skills.
Interactive games promote teamwork, giving students the opportunity to work on group decision-making, develop relationship skills, and resolve conflict peacefully. Real-life scenarios enacted through role-plays and skits give students the opportunity to apply the skills they have learned, deepening their understanding of self and others.
Interactive social and emotional learning helps children internalize the skills they will carry with them through life; they will in turn develop strong character that will give them the resiliency they need to live happy and healthy lives.
What are Examples of Interactive Features?
An interactive website can indeed be just about any website that enables the users to do more than just reading the given text or scrolling through images. But there’s always being something and being really great at something. So, what makes a more interactive website?
There are certain features that create room for a better opportunity to build an interactive website that really pushes the limits.
An interactive element is anything that a user can interact with. Or in other words, anything that is clickable. This doesn’t mean that you should make anything and everything on your site clickable. Elements that should be interactive are the ones that help your users pay attention to the most critical aspects of your site. So here are seven interactive features that will help you improve your landing page …
1. Animations make a page more unique and interactive
Simple and easy way to create visual interest and draw attention towards content is by adding animations. They make landing pages much more unique and interactive. Also, the whole purpose of animation is to enhance the design and fill in the gaps, so you should use this opportunity. When doing so, identify which elements to animate, which animation to use and when it is going to be triggered.
Afterward, apply all that consistently to create a great experience. CSS transition and transform properties or keyframes are great to develop simple stuff like making a scroll-down arrow bounce on hover or making paragraphs fade in on the scroll. Keep in mind that there are so many possibilities to explore with animations and it is easy to overextend, so be careful.
2. Don’t ignore buttons
Buttons are interactive elements that every landing page has and they are an essential part of every web page. But even with simple elements, you can create very unique and creative follow-ups. The usual challenge is that buttons might not be so obvious, easy to find or they are not indicating to users what happens after they click on them – this way users lose trust.
Having a cursor change on hover will point out that something is clickable and that way users can easily identify which elements are interactive. Having an animation to make it more noticeable or call-to-action text can help increase the clicks.
A simple example of a button is the one which reveals an additional text after the click. It helps your landing page stay clean and gives users a way to engage with your content. However, a more creative example would be the one on the Typeform site where they show different ways of their product use cases. On the right side, there are buttons, after they are clicked on, show one way of using Typeform and that part is also interactive.
3. Forms – fewer fields, more conversions
Forms are seen as the most popular method of conversion and standard part of landing pages. But it appears that their median conversion rate is somewhere between 3-5.5%, which means that forms are not as high-converting as they could be. Common mistakes people make with forms are: too many fields, confusing instructions, asking for personal information user is not comfortable to share, etc.
Besides that, users are more prone to scanning than in-depth reading, and if they take a quick look at form and feel like it requires too much effort they won’t fill it out.
To get users to fill out the form, they need to be interested in your content, and then you build up their interest with interactive elements. However, once a user is at the fill-the-form point, it should be very easy to fill it out, so they don’t have time to change their mind. This means only asking for the necessary information and no distractions. Also, make sure to provide appropriate labels and other instructions if needed to avoid any misunderstandings.
The GlobeKit landing page has a great example of the form. Scroll through product features or click on the button to get to the form which is simple, short and easy to fill out.
4. Video sends a stronger message
The video is another common interactive element that is considered to be highly engaging. And that should not come as a surprise because people like to watch videos, they love stories, and they can relate to them. User remembers 95% of the message when it is viewed and only 10% when it is read (according to post by Monica Carvalho), which means that video often makes more sense then just necessary information and it can have a more significant impact.
Having autoplay on a video is a good idea because it draws more attention that way. But it can be annoying for users who don’t want to watch the video or if something very loud starts to play – it can also drive them away from your site.
What you want to do is have autoplay on, but with audio turned off (a common practice seen on most social media platforms). That way users who want to watch it will have no problem looking for the unmute button, while ones who don’t want to watch it can easily skip it. Another option is a few videos with a possibility to choose before playing them. This way user can engage and get content based on their interest which will make them stay on your page.
Amazing video examples can be found on the Benchmark site. They have five different banners that serve as navigation and hovering over each plays a different video which makes you interested in exploring more.
5. Social media sharing buttons remind users to share the content
Lately, there have been more and more blog posts about people removing social media sharing buttons from their sites, claiming that users don’t engage with them and that if users love your content they are gonna share it anyway. But even those say that having social media sharing buttons can remind users to share the content – so why remove them? In my opinion, they are still useful, because there are still plenty of users who would rather be just one click away from sharing something then having to copy URL and then going to their social media profiles to paste it and share it.
So yeah, you should still encourage users to find and share your product, business or idea on social media. And by doing so, these sharing buttons can bring you more users who will be easier to convert. But you can go beyond that and include share icons, latest Instagram photos, Tweets, etc., or even make parts of text shareable when highlighted. Also adding call-to-action text next to social media actions can help increase engagement.
Cheetos web is a great example of good practice. At the very top, they have the bar with Tweets from other people. Their main content includes lots of their Tweets, which when clicked on, also give options to share while in the footer, they got links to their social media accounts.
6. Quizzes, surveys, and polls provide valuable data about users
Interactive elements like quizzes, surveys and polls don’t work for every site, but if they fit with your content, they can be really interesting for users – especially quizzes and polls which are super popular. Two reasons why people like quizzes are that we like to talk about ourselves and we like to learn about ourselves, which comes from a study by Harvard University researchers that showed how we are psychologically addicted to talking about ourselves.
Quizzes are also specific because they can prolong users attention span to longer than 2 minutes and given that user already spent the time to take the quiz, there is a greater chance that they will leave the email. For you, quizzes are helpful with selling your product or getting opinions from users about a specific thing.
They work similarly to forms in a way that once the user starts to engage with them, you shouldn’t distract them and interrupt the flow with additional content. Instead, keep interface clean and minimalist so they can focus on what they are doing.
The Two Chimp Coffee has an amazing quiz example. It takes only a few questions to find out which of their coffee is best for you, and of course, you will be more likely to buy it afterward because the solution is personalized to your needs and they are giving you a value in return.
Surveys can be a quick and relatively easy way to get data about your users. But they tend to be lengthy and boring and research found that respondents tend to spend less time on each question the longer the survey is. Also if a survey is longer than 7-8 minutes, completion rates drop by up to 20%.
To have a higher response rate with surveys, you should try to have more closed than open questions so users have to type less. That makes a survey easier to complete and also easier to analyze, but if a survey needs to be lengthy, it is best to separate it into steps or just one question at a time.
7. Interactive Infographics can be a great communication tool
Infographics are a fantastic tool to show an idea or how something works in just a few seconds. They also present statistics in a much more appealing way than just looking at plain numbers. So if your site needs to showcase some analytics or communicate some lengthy topic, consider using infographics.
Especially interactive ones, cause it will definitely be more interesting for users to explore and interact with them. They’re easy to understand and visually compelling, which will leave a great impression on a user.
These were some interactive elements that can help your landing page deal with user’s short attention span and help to get them interested and more engaged with your content. Even the most basic interactive elements, like buttons and videos, can be made more fun and bring more engagement and conversions.
Before you go crazy on implementing all these elements, try to decide which ones best suit your website and business goals. Then try to make them eye-catching and easy to understand so users know instantly what is clickable and what isn’t. Last but not least, keep in mind best practices for each in order to get the most out of them.