Humans make decisions in less than 4 seconds by making assumptions.
Emotion is everything.
We make assumptions about people we just meet, about products and brands.
We don’t have time to analyse every single aspect of a situation, person or product, so we use shortcuts.
Just imagine if you had to make a decision without using shortcuts: how many hours would you need to analyse the situation before you came to a conclusion?
If you meet someone new you instantly FEEL if you want to learn more about this person or if you are not attracted to them at all. How is it possible? You only have just met them and oftentimes, they haven’t even said a word!
All this happens in our subconscious mind – in our limbic brain.
This part of the brain though does NOT understand language.
It communicates through emotion, feelings, hunches, sparks of ideas.
It’s for this reason you may sometimes have felt like you KNEW something (or someone) was right for you or you were COMPELLED to take a certain action, but if someone asked you, you couldn’t explain why.
You may have then tried to rationalise it and verbalise it but you were finding it hard to translate your hunch or deep feeling in your intuition into words. Words simply can never truly communicate your feelings. It’s because parts of the brain that are responsible for emotions and language/logic are not communicating with each other.
Making decisions with your logical mind always leaves you with doubt.
When you try to make a decision using your logical mind it almost always leaves you wondering if you have made the right choice.
Ever tried buying a new TV and comparing all the options? It can take ages to make a decision like that and still if you decide on a certain model and then hear someone you know bought a different one you’d wonder if you should’ve gone with the other one too. Maybe the other one was better?
It always leaves you with this nagging voice in your head: Maybe I made the wrong decision?
Buyer’s remorse is real
After you buy something of high value or expensive using your logic, you may also experience buyer’s remorse: this feeling when you think to yourself: what have I done!
You then want to cancel your order or get this strong feeling of anxiety because you know you spent a lot of money and you are not sure if your decision was right.
This feeling affects the way you perceive a brand you purchased from. It can even leave a lasting feeling of resentment and a negative outlook on a brand you’re buying from.
Making decisions from your heart (emotion) gives you certainty.
If you make a decision using limbic brain (intuition, following your heart or listening to your gut), you are certain this is a good decision even if others tell you it’s not. Even if others give you logical reasons to show you this is not the right decision, you know in your heart it is and it doesn’t matter what others are saying.
Once you decide on certain products because you feel it’s great for you, it really doesn’t matter there are others just like it elsewhere.
You have already decided.
Even if you try to do more research because you want to be sure you really make a wise decision you still find yourself going back to the first choice. This is especially true when purchasing something of high value, something expensive.
Creating brand loyalty is only possible when your customers use their limbic brain to make a decision.
They need to be emotionally invested, they need to FEEL your brand is right for them. Then, the product or service has secondary importance.
90% of all purchasing decisions are made subconsciously
You may feel like your decisions are made by careful consideration of all pro’s and con’s, but I can assure you it’s not the case.
Most of the time we make decisions in our limbic brain and the main driving factor is our emotional state.
We either try to go escape from pain (solve our problems, find solutions to things that bother us) or move towards pleasure (treat ourselves, achieve our potential or feel closer to others or ourselves).
Emotions connect you with your ideal client
Your ideal clients feel an array of emotions every single day.
They are complicated humans, just like you.
Every single person has their own experiences, beliefs and assumptions about the world around them (and themselves).
It doesn’t mean you can’t get really clear on what type of emotion you should evoke in your brand to make them feel like it’s irresistible to them though.
If you strike the right chord, your potential customers will feel connected to your brand.
They will feel heard, important and like your business understands them.
This is how brand loyalty is built!
How to discover which emotions should YOUR brand evoke?
The answer is simple: Brand Archetypes.
This tool is incredibly useful in understanding what drives your customers and what is the middle ground between what you are trying to put out there and what they want to experience.
It’s one of the best ways to add emotion into your brand in a consistent, easy to understand way.
People understand brand archetypes on a subconscious level so as soon as you align your brand with one correctly (and consistently), you’ll unlock a secret doorway to your customer’s hearts (and minds).
Different emotions and needs we all have
Even though each of us is different, there are actually just a few emotions we feel.
Dr. Paul Ekman developed a theory of basic emotions, suggesting we actually have just 6 of them:
- and Disgust.
Out of these basic emotions can come an array of emotions that are more complex. I love how it’s beautifully explained on the emotion wheel below:
As you can see, there are many different states that can come out of basic emotion.
Getting clear on which basic emotion you’d like your customers to feel is a doorway for you to explore the more complicated states and really understand their needs and what will strike a chord with them.
How big brands do it
As a Lover brand, Magnum is all about pleasure. If you’ve ever been their customer, you probably bought their ice cream in a specific state: looking for something to indulge in, wanting to savour a moment, experience something stimulating.
Magnum always plays on these emotional states and paints a picture of what it’s like to experience their products.
It’s not ice cream they sell: they sell pleasure, indulgence, a moment for yourself you’ll treasure and remember.
In their content and ads, there’s a lot of sensory stimulation: the sound of cracking chocolate makes you want to go out and buy it in the middle of the night, doesn’t it?
Magnum makes you feel important, experience intimate moments and awake the senses. Pleasure is the result of these states.
Jean Paul Gaultier
This brand is scandalous. If there’s one emotion they want you to experience is power.
Jean Paul Gaultier is not for everyone, but if you’re bored, they promise you the feeling of exhilaration.
This Rebel brand has created a revolution in the couture world with its unique transgressive view of fashion.
Favourite fashion designer of Madonna, rebel herself, Jean Paul Gaultier brings interesting and often culturally shocking designs that attract people who are bold, confident and like to stand out.
Jean Paul Gaultier doesn’t sell clothes, fragrances or makeup – they sell confidence and power.
This is a great example of a luxe Rebel brand in action: luxurious, premium and high quality, yet naughty, sexy, breaking the rules of society that’s stiff, and frankly, boring.
It sends one message: you don’t need to comply.
This brand couldn’t be more different than Jean Paul Gaultier.
As an Innocent brand, Honest Company promises you the feeling of safety, security and therefore: happiness.
This is a brand that attracts people craving simplicity and honesty.
They want to feel like they’re children again and everything is pure, uncomplicated and true again.
Honest Company doesn’t sell their products though: they sell the feeling of safety they offer.
They promise you can trust their ingredients are safe for your child and their employees are treated fairly and with respect.
They are a brand with principles and they do things right.
Can you tell the main emotion they focus on evoking?
Yes, you guessed it: it’s happiness.
Happiness, that comes from uncomplicated solutions you can trust.
5 ways to add emotion into your brand
1. Understand your audience
You shouldn’t do anything before you get this step right.
It’s really all about understanding your audience and what kind of emotions do they feel/want to feel.
What is their motivation?
Thankfully, I made it really easy for you by creating our Brand Archetypes Quiz.
It takes 1 minute to find out what is your audience main desire and how you can implement this knowledge into your brand.
When you understand what motivates your ideal audience it’s a great starting point to find out how are they thinking too.
- What are their beliefs about themselves and the world?
- What are their limiting beliefs?
- What holds them back?
- What are they afraid of?
- What are they dreaming of but won’t admit?
These are some of the most powerful questions you can ask yourself to really get to know your audience.
One of my favourite ways to get to know my audience is social listening.
You can find real gems just by watching conversations between people, reading comments under posts or reading book reviews on Amazon.
Using your audience’s own words is the best way to add emotion to your copy!
PRO TIP: Create a spreadsheet where you copy + paste these gems so you can easily access them when you need to write a sales page or create content.
2. Use visuals
It takes twice as long to understand and see the meaning of words as it is to process a symbol or a visual.
It means we process visuals many times faster than words.
That’s why it’s so important to use visuals strategically. When you understand what types of visuals send the right message, you can use them to connect with your customer’s subconscious minds.
Visuals are not just photography though: it’s the colour palette, fonts and layouts you use throughout your brand.
Be careful though: poorly chosen visuals can put people off and sabotage your brand.
3. Use storytelling
Stories are the best way to market your brand because people LOVE listening to stories. They are entertaining, allow us to relate to the characters in the story and learn from their experiences. They often also evoke emotions and therefore create a connection between us and the storyteller.
Once you introduce storytelling into your brand you’ll see an increase in brand loyalty and engagement. That’s why it’s so important to understand how to do it correctly: it has a huge impact on your business.
Depending on your Brand Archetype there will be different stories you should be telling. So go ahead and discover your brand personality now.
For example, if you’re a Magician it’s important you tell before and after stories. This is how you show the transformation you’re providing and make your audience want to experience it too.
If your archetype is a Rebel, go ahead and tell stories about being fed up with how things are and doing things differently, against the current. Don’t be afraid to use stronger language and be really real. Your ideal client will connect with that story because they feel the frustration and are ready for a big revolution to happen.
Are you a Creator? Tell stories of creativity, imposter syndrome, creative process, self-expression. Your people experience all these and will really resonate with this type of content.
For all archetypes, though it’s important you remind your audience of their pain points and show them what their life could look like. Once you discover your archetype you’ll understand your ideal audience’s pain better and you’ll be able to speak to it directly, creating an emotional response – which is what we want!
4. Create personalised moments and experiences
These days it’s not only important, it’s necessary. If your brand doesn’t create personalised experiences you’re probably missing out on a lot of sales, but most importantly: emotional connection.
People want to feel they are important. They know you sell to many people, but they want to feel they are THE most important person, even if it’s just for a moment.
They want to experience something made specifically for them.
It doesn’t need to be a custom product or service for each client and customer.
- Personalise communication using their name,
- Segment your audience and send them personalised emails based on their interest, where they are in their business or life,
- Send them a birthday message using automation,
- Serve them content depending on their likes, clicks and interests,
- Send clients who sign up for your program personalised, physical gifts,
- Use as much personalisation as you can.
These things really make a difference.
Are you able to personalise your services to your clients? Do it! There’s nothing better than personalised support, done-for-you service and a brand making you feel you’re their most important customer.
5. Tell your brand story consistently
We are bombarded with messages these days and it really takes more than once for a message to stick with us, or even make its way into our heads.
It takes over 13 times hearing the same message for us to log it in our brains!
This means you need to be telling your brand story and telling it consistently.
It doesn’t mean you need to say the same thing over and over again, though.
Use different mediums, different words and different stories to tell your main brand story and make sure it’s stuck with your audience.
For example, if your main brand story is one of transformation (because your brand is a Magician) then you can tell this main story by a series of smaller stories and messages:
- before and after stories of your clients and customers,
- your own before and after story (if it makes sense for your brand),
- challenges you need to overcome to make a change,
- mindset shifts you need to make,
- your secret formula or methodology and how it came about.
- + more.
By telling different stories that are tied to the one, main story, you’re telling the main story consistently and making sure your audience starts to recognize what your business focuses on and what they can expect from you.
By bringing emotions into your brand you connect with your ideal customers on a level that’s deeper than logic. You activate their limbic brain, which is where they really make decisions.
It allows you to increase not only your engagement and sales but retention too – if people make a decision from the heart and have a positive experience with the brand (which they will if you personalise it to them), they are way more likely to buy from you again and again.
Even if your prices are higher than competitors.
That’s the power of emotional branding: that’s why I’m so passionate about this!