Neuroscience model of Branding: A Psychological Marketing Strategy

Neuroscience and Branding:

Branding is a process of shaping and creating a strong brand image of the company in the minds of consumers to give meaning to a product or service. The objective of a brand is to build customer loyalty and brand salience. A unique branding technique can give you a competitive edge which helps in acquiring and retaining customers in the long run. 

Effective branding and marketing can be considered more of an art than science but it is the combination of both that gives long-lasting success. Constructing a brand image through stories and visuals elicits specific emotional responses in a consumer’s mind. Humans in general comprehend visuals 60,000 times faster than written content. 

Brand awareness techniques affect consumers on a psychological level 

Humans are rational beings by nature but most of the decisions taken by us are influenced subconsciously. The purchasing decisions of customers are profoundly manipulated by the brands, they affect our thinking – how we perceive ourselves and how we portray our identities to the world. The emotions which we feel have nothing to do with the purpose of their product. 

In this modern capitalist world, effective branding forms a foundation for the growth and development of a brand. The consumption of a brand is no longer based on survival needs but it also affects the deep-rooted values and beliefs attached to it. Consumers look at brands as part of their social identity and position. 

In the late 1990’s Gerald Zaltman, a Professor at Harvard University for the first time tried to establish a relationship between brain mechanisms and behaviour patterns of the consumer using scientific methods. The term ‘Neuromarketing’ was first used by Ale Smidts in 2002 in his book “Looking into the brain: On the prospects of Neuromarketing”. 

Neuromarketing refers to the study of the brain to understand the mechanism of decision-making in consumers through behavioural patterns that are used by companies as marketing strategies. Companies use brain scanning technologies to understand how a product is perceived by consumers, how it analyzes changes in the brain, and in turn suggests suitable marketing strategies. 

Ways in which brands used Neuroscience for Marketing

The visual elements used by the marketing strategies include packaging, shape, and colour. Companies use neuroscientific tools to assess the psychological response of consumers toward packaging. Studies revealed that consumers are less attracted to shiny objects. 

Colours also play an important role as different colours evoke different emotions. Red colour represents passion, power, and energy which is popularly used by the Coca-Cola Company as a primary colour. Similarly yellow represents happiness and optimism which is popularly used by IKEA. 

Companies also use physiological tracking as a form of marketing strategy that involves – facial coding, heart rate, and eye movement measurement which helps them comprehend behaviours.

Companies also focus on using scarcity effects, human beings in nature desire objects which are scarce, to increase the demand and value of the product, and companies reduce the availability of the product in the market. Zara is one of the best examples to portray such a  strategy – every year Zara releases only limited stock of a particular product which increases the demand tremendously. 

In a fast-paced world with continuous and increasing competitiveness, it is important for us to not be automated shopping creatures but to be rational decision-makers. We must not make decisions subconsciously based on emotions. As a consumer, we need to think if we need this product or if it is the irrational urge that influences our decision-making power.

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