Christmas may be over but the stores are still running post Christmas sales in order to get rid of their inventory. However, there are forces other than discounts that drive sales.. For example, how do you "feel" about a brand? How does a product make you "feel?" These are the questions companies & the PR firms that they employ have to ask in order to be successful. Why? Emotions drive marketing & sales like never before. To my recollection, it used to be mostly car and cigarette companies who would talk about how their product made us feel. Hearing words like strong, powerful, sleek, & sexy were not uncommon adjectives to find in their marketing copy. However in recent years, marketing genius Steve Jobs tapped into the power of emotion every time he launched his iconic Mac products to great effect. He made Mac users feel "smarter, hipper, cooler & more 'exclusive' " than PC users. In our recently hotly contested political season candidates on all sides were engaging in similar practices trying to appeal to the emotions of their desired target demographic. Furthermore, whether or not this is a particularly admirable practice doesn't seem to matter to candidates on either side of the aisle because the fact is, it works. My question is why does it work? What is is about how a product or brand makes us feel compelled to either run toward or away from it?
The Power Of Feelings & 'Touch'
According to sales & marketing gurus like Donny Deutsch, how we feel about a product is an essential step towards purchasing it. Another critical component, which brings the company closer to making a sale is touch. Why? Touching a product is a necessary step towards a sense of ownership. A few years ago, Hyundai used this concept to generate car sales during the worst of our recent economic crash when hardly anyone was buying cars. What did they do? The said "buy the car; if you cant ' manage' [the payments], bring it back-no hassle, no penalty. What was their thinking? They thought that once you actually owned it, smelled that "new car smell, & experienced the feeling of ownership, it would be much harder to return it. They were right.
If You Don't Want To Buy It Don't Touch It
Think about these things the next time you are in a store or even when you open your mailbox & see all the marketing mail for credit cards [even though if you are like me and you have technically opted out]. "Back in the day" a credit card was just a credit card but now there are silver ones, gold ones, & black ones-each color implying a greater level of supposed power & exclusivity. They are very successfully appealing to your emotions.These card companies want you to see, feel, & touch these faux cards which is why they enclose fake ones so that you are one step closer to signing on the dotted line....if not this time, next time! Emotions are at the core of what drives social media marketing. If your friends think something is cool, well then it must be...right? Also, of course you want to "fit in" so you are going to support the same product.. Somehow clicking "like" has become almost like "touching the product." The bottom line: be careful what you touch.