Emotions are a Marketer's Best Friend - Here's Why...
Updated: Mar 29
Marketing is all about creating emotion that will entice and engage consumers. But it is up to the marketers to determine which emotion will be provoked, how it will relate and connect to audiences, and how that emotion can be used to benefit the brand. Keep reading to find out the importance of emotion in marketing and how you as a marketer can effectively use emotion in your future work.
As I’m typing, I see a Kate Spade book that evokes feelings of creativity. My Himalayan salt lamp continuously brings me feelings of comfort when it is lit up. On the wall above my head, I have a black and white painting of the Eiffel tower. Each time I look at this, I am overwhelmed with desire to travel and wanderlust feelings. Each of these items trigger a different emotion, these provoked feelings being the reasons I wanted to purchase them for my own. Now look around your room. What do you see? Think back to the point-of-purchase for each of these things. They each provoked an emotion that made you connect with it.
This experience translates to the intangible, as well. The shows we watch, the apps we use, the campaigns we ‘like’ on social media engage us as consumers through emotion. Marketing has the capability to draw consumers to products through identifiable feelings . But how does it happen?
Each business should have an established brand. With that brand comes a brand personality that will be received by consumers. Brand personalities have human-like characteristics that consumers can connect with, form bonds with, and see themselves in them.
Think of Ted Baker. It evokes recognizable romanticism and poise through its woman’s line. When a woman wants to feel chic and feminine, she can look to Ted Baker designs and fit that persona. By putting on a pair of pumps with an iconic Ted Baker bow, the woman can feel both powerful and poised.
Andrew O’Connell posed a key question for marketers in his Harvard Business review article: Should brands be used as instruments of social change?
If we as marketers have the power to cultivate so many diverse feelings and emotions in consumers at such high intensities, then should we use the power for something more than just products and services? When marketers can trigger emotions in consumers, consumers are one step closer to purchasing that product. Brands create money for businesses through capturing emotions in consumers and drawing them closer to the product or service. But should we also be focusing on contributing to a mission that can benefit society as we engage consumers?
O’Connell also discussed the significance of androgynous products. Rather than reinforcing gender stereotypes, certain businesses have found a way to recreate incorporating gender-influenced deigns. The human-like characteristics androgynous brands incorporate take on both high levels of masculinity and femininity. Apple, for example has high levels of stereotypical masculine power while also having equal amounts of feminine sleekness and sophistication. Apple did not make a statement on gender stereotypes, but rather creates engagement and emotion by shifting marketing patterns and filling a hole of representation in the media.
You do not always and only have to release statements to let consumers know where you stand. If you are a fashion company, incorporate minority models and those of all shapes, sizes, sexual/gender orientation, etc. This representation will provoke affirmation and representation in its consumers. If you are a music streaming service, do a campaign that features underground artists found on social media that do not have the economic resources to get found by record labels on their own. Listeners will be moved with appreciation, charity, and empathy.
So, find a cause your brand can be passionate about and be the voice that fixes the lack of representation in the media. Marketing has the capability to draw consumers to products through relatable emotions and identifiable feelings. Establish your brand, establish your values, and watch your brand equity skyrocket.