“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed,
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance, or nature’s changing course untrimmed:
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st,
Nor shall death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st,
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.”
(William Shakespeare, Sonnet XVIII)
Marketers have finally got the message and are paying increasing importance to the role of emotions in helping consumers make choices about brands. Decisions about brand, or more generally decisions about life, are not just about associating an emotion with a brand or company, but about associating the right emotion. William Shakespeare was right when he talked about the gap between reality and desire, between being hot and rough or fair and temperate.
Read more »
Why do people who like fun fly with Virgin Airlines while those who seek safety and control stick with British Airways? Is there a reason that IKEA’s brand experience is so successful in communicating their democratic values? And why has the resurrection of LEGO to become the world’s largest toy brand been one of the brand success stories of the last 20 years (even leading to one of the most successful movies of 2014)? Read more »
Our emotional brain speaks the language of experience, dominated by our visual world. It’s time for research to start talking the same language as the emotional brain.
Let’s face it – as researchers we spend most of our lives in the verbal sphere. But does that make sense? And, in particular, does it make sense to try and understand human emotions through questions and answers or sets of words? We are living in the visual age, where many claim that visual literacy is on the rise, with the use of multiple screens and the importance of the moving image in TV, film and online (read a review of The Age of the Image here). But humans have always been more visual than verbal, and technology is now allowing us to share visual information more easily than ever before. So there is no longer an excuse for market research! Read more »
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou
Sadly Maya Angelou died at the end of May, but this quotation from her should have pride of place on the office walls of every marketing professional. Emotions matter in marketing because they are linked to the human goals that frame every decision we make. But is there evidence that emotions really work and how do you find the right emotion for your brand?
Read more »
What do brain science and semiotics have in common? Semiotics and cultural studies reveal the systems of signs that exist in culture and other belief systems, where cultural context matters. Behavioural economics, social psychology and brain science all demonstrate that even small changes in the environment (context) can lead to huge changes in human behaviour. They both show that context matters much more than we admit, through shared cultural values, the ways in which meaning is ‘situated’ in particular contexts, and the interaction between context, emotional meaning and the link between behaviour and emotional context.
Read more »
When you see a pink ribbon what do you immediately think of? If you’re like me, you will make a connection to the Breast Cancer Awareness campaign, which has made a pink ribbon its own unforgettable icon.
Our visual perception dominates the senses, and colour is the most powerful of our visual sensation, which is why I place it at the top of the sensory hierarchy in the esSense® sensory branding framework presented in Brand esSense. That’s because colour primes humans like nothing else, not only because of its powerful symbolic value, learned through nature and culture, but also because it can have a direct physical effect on our bodies. Read more »
Recent work by the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA; Binet & Field, 2012) has reinforced the difficult truth that emotions are key to long-term brand success, outperforming the efficiency and profitability (ROI) of advertising which is rational, and even that which is a combination of rational and emotional (by 2 to 1). Their analysis does support that rational messaging can have strong short-term effects (eg promotional campaigns), but long-term effectiveness is very weak compared with campaigns that create an emotional connection (implicit or explicit) with target customers. Read more »