If people feel nothing, they do nothing: Why Emotions Sell and How to Incorporate Them into Your Marketing.

This week I have posted some articles about the best way to connect with people through the written word: by making them care. Real People’s Stories Make Other People Care is one of the articles I wrote and as an example I shared my own personal story about how social media saved my life (or actually my sanity).

Today’s post is about the emotional side of marketing. If you really care about something, it’s not because it’s rational to care, it’s because you feel strongly for it. Emotions are involved big time when we care. But until quite recently, emotions have been a banished element in business. Traditionally, everything professional has been about rational thinking. Luckily, there is a shift going on. Emotions are now considered as a factor to count on, especially in sales and marketing.

A great article on this matter is written by one of my favourite bloggers, tweeters and illustrators: the multi-talented Mars Dorian, whose life motto is “When you’re not trying to fit in, you’re free to stand out” and who’s speciality is to use bold, visual designs to help his clients’ content spread online.

Dorian is also a contributing {grow} columnist, where he recently published the post “Please. Make me feel something!” about emotional marketing. His article spins on a speech by John Kearon, known as “The Steve Jobs of Market Research”. Dorian also gives some advice on how to include emotions into marketing (se the tips further down in this post). But first a quote from Dorian’s article, which pretty well concludes what it’s about:

…PURE emotion is the sole buying decision influencer — because it’s targeting
your oldest and most powerful part of the brain – the fight-or-flight REPTILIAN BRAIN. Grrrrrrr.

And in order to create the strongest reaction (e.g. making people ACT on your calls to actions), you have to create something that either pisses them off or excites them.

Kearon left his speech with a bold claim (I’m paraphrasing): ”We are feeling creatures. Content matters so much LESS than you think it does. Do something shocking or exhilarating in your marketing, but don’t be bland. If people feel nothing, they do nothing.”

Here are Mars Dorian’s tips on how to infuse more emotional OOOOMPH into your marketing:

  • Be “too.” Some people say my site is too cartoonish and colorful – it looks more like a comic geek’s lair than a visual marketing biz. Well, they’re obviously not my clients. I attract the RIGHT clients who luv that style. What about you — what can you make “too?” Too edgy, too colorful, too friendly? Too over-the-top design? Find those edges. And walk right up to them.
  • Concentrate on the feeling benefit of your products and services. Show pictures, words and/or videos of how people feel after they bought your product or services. What’s the state you want them to feel?
  • Write visual. Using lots of latin-based words makes your ego think you’re one smart something, but it has the emotional power of a vacuum instruction manual. The easier it is to grab your sentences, the more your audience can picture it. And if they can “picture” it, they can feel it. Ambulate this direction? No. Walk this way.
  • Include conflict. Me versus them. Our group against theirs. Your past self versus your new one. Whenever we include conflict and contrasts in our content, sparks fly. And emotions arise.
  • Surprise. Email clients when they least expect it. Personally welcome every new subscriber to your email list. Send your best customers a real card on special occasions. Create a video for your brand that no one would expect (but still relates to the brand.) When that works, you have their full attention, and you can do something with it.

I strongly recommend you to read the entire article. It’s definitely worth your time. And, as you can see below, the illustrations are awesome!!



About the author

Anna Rydne is an award winning and highly skilled communications specialist with +13 years of experience in the field of internal and external communication, PR and marketing. What distinguishes her from others in her field of expertise is that she treats communication as entertainment. It's simple to explain why: if it isn't funny or relevant enough, people switch channel. Anna has a special interest in personal branding and she believes the road to success is trying. Based in Stockholm, Sweden, she's determined to uncover the secrets of how successful people and companies communicate. She tweets about all things comms, social media and marketing @CoSkills and writes for SteamFeed.com once a month. She holds a bachelor's degree in psychology. Contact her at communicateskills@gmail.com.

9 Responses to If people feel nothing, they do nothing: Why Emotions Sell and How to Incorporate Them into Your Marketing.

  1. susielindau says:

    Great advice! I love the personal aspect of it.

  2. Chad Miller says:

    This is exactly why I’m shifting the focus of my blog content. Emotion! Passion!
    When you stir people’s emotions, you can change the world.
    Great share, Anna!

  3. […] If people feel nothing, they do nothing: Why Emotions Sell and How to Incorporate Them into Your Mar… […]

  4. […] If people feel nothing, they do nothing: Why Emotions Sell and How to Incorporate Them into Your Mar… […]

  5. […] If people feel nothing, they do nothing: Why Emotions Sell and How to Incorporate Them into Your Mar…. […]

  6. gsARCADE says:

    Great article i will use this in my next email

  7. alskursky says:

    Excellent post! This is so true! There was a study done that showed people in accidents who had damage to the part of their brain responsible for emotions were unable to make even simple decisions. I found that absolutely fascinating.

    My husband does a workshop that teaches people how to identify the primary emotion(s) of the person you’re selling to. With that information, you can speak to their emotion and increase sales.

    I’m not here to pitch the workshop, but if I can help someone learn more on this topic, I’d like to. I can be reached at my website at sellingtoemotions com.

Speak your mind!

Sign up for notifications of new posts and you'll get the newsletter too!
(I promise not to spam your inbox).
%d bloggers like this: