Marketing and advertising have become a huge part of our daily lives, yet most of us don’t know much about them and therefore we tend to fall as victims to marketing strategies. Advertisements are not as straightforward as just creating a product that appeals to your struggles and offers a solution. The most successful marketing schemes strive to connect emotionally to their customers. Rational thought in decision making is not always the key part to making a choice. Studies have shown that people rely on emotion rather than rational thought when making purchases.
For marketers it’s extremely important to not only sell their product but to create an emotional connection between the brand and the customer, increasing a customer’s loyalty to a brand.
We can guess that the emotion that marketers want to evoke is happiness but it is not the only one. Emotions like sadness, disgust/anger and fear/surprise all form different marketing techniques and create different effects on
the customers. Negative emotions create a connection just as strong as positive emotions can.
Happiness is one of the easiest marketing techniques to use and also the most common. Happiness can be evoked by touching and cute imagery such as the “Friends Furever” Android campaign which showed adorable imagery of unlikely animal friendships.
When it comes to sadness marketers use an interesting technique of evoking sadness in their customers and then offering their service/product as a method of getting rid of those feelings. This means that these advertisements try to create a sense of empathy and sadness within the customer because empathy can make us much more trusting and generous. One such advertisement is a promotional video from MetLife about the daily struggles of a father in Hong Kong.
Fear is a strong motivator in our everyday lives and can be a strong driving force in a lot of our decisions. Fear is most commonly used in public service announcements about drunk driving, smoking or global warming. This advertising technique tries to scare people into making the right future decisions.
Usually, anger is avoided in marketing strategies because no one wants an annoyed customer and it is difficult to pull off in a successful way. The most noteworthy advertisement using anger and frustration was the “#Like A Girl” advertisement which aimed to grab the viewer’s attention. The idea behind the advertisement was to create a feeling of frustration towards the injustice and making that frustration the driving force to create change.
In conclusion, we need to be aware of these marketing techniques considering how prominent advertisements are in our daily lives. Every time you look at an advertisement that seems to persuade you in some sort of way, try to figure out what the marketer tried to do with that advertisement and what technique they used. If you take all that away and look at the service/product alone, is it still just as persuasive?
Chan, Nathan. “Can You ‘Feel’ It? How to Use Emotional Decision-Making in Marketing.” Entrepreneur, 3 Feb. 2017, www.entrepreneur.com/article/288512.