Friday, January 30, 2009

Time to revisit communication strategy: Corporates should connect with customers’ emotions

Malcolm Gladwell’s book Blink is a must-read for all of us in public relations, marketing, marketing communications or MarCom, brand consultancy and advertising. The book indicates that we have to revisit the way we communicate with our stakeholders, particularly customers and potential customers.

Writing about the book in Marketing Today, Daryl Travis, CEO, Brandtrust, says, “We’re confirming brands are about feelings, not facts. Buying decisions are made on promises that transcend products, and promises are rooted in human emotions. Quite simply, brands are built on trust. Making and keeping promises builds trust which is among the most basic of human emotions. To impact our company’s bottom line, we need to get in touch with our customers’ emotions. As marketers, we must have our own blink moments and embrace the reality that branding is about ‘brain surgery’ and psychology. Because how your customers feel about your brand isn’t a casual question. It is the crucial question.”

Gladwell talks about how consumers make decisions in the blink of an eye.

“Gladwell’s effort to share emerging insights into how our brains work is timely,” writes Travis. “In this decade, we are learning more about how humans think and feel and what drives our behavior than the whole of our discoveries in the time since Sigmund Freud dreamt up the idea of psychoanalysis. This has profound implications for marketing and brand professionals.

“It is critical for marketers to understand the role of emotions in human decision-making and behavior. Raised in Western culture, we are well indoctrinated in the forces of logic and reason, but we’ve lost sight of the essential role emotions play in determining human behavior. In fact, all human behavior is driven by emotional input derived from the stored visualizations.”


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