Customer emotions equal brand success

Forget about all that talk about personal budget keeping and consumers researching for best buys and purchasing based on logical choices of best value.

The truth is, people are much more apt to put down their credit card to buy something if it touches their emotions.

Susan Gunelius, author of Building Brand Value the Playboy Way and a host of other books on marketing, blogging and branding, suggests that emotional triggers can be either happy or sad or even fearful, but as long as the brand targets them, increased sales will result.

We will all apparently ante up quickly for brands we perceive as offering us love and a sense of belonging, security and peace of mind, or even a feeling of control over our lives.

That’s why more people buy horoscope books every year than accounting textbooks, even though the latter may be more accurate and useful information.

We buy brands that offer instant gratifications, brands that promise us value for our hard-earned money, and gadgets that offer us the ultimate emotional luxury, more time.

If it’s that simple, why doesn’t everyone brand that way?

The problem is that when you go mining for emotions, you have to make sure you tap into the right ones. If you miss-match your brand with the wrong emotion, you can be worse off than if you didn’t touch any emotion at all.

How can you protect yourself?

The best route is to embark on a solid market research. Take the time to figure out how what you are offering will impact your targeted buyers.

What could be its emotional attraction? Will it make them feel loved, happy, safe or secure? Will they feel successful or comfortable?

You may run into some resistance from your marketing department since traditional thinking is that branding should be focused around a product’s usability. The problem with depending exclusively on usability is that while designers may have an intended experience in mind for people who purchase their product, they cannot control that experience 100 percent of the time.

That is why today’s companies must find ways to measure users’ emotional experiences. You can do this subjectively through surveys or interviews, knowing that the direct interaction you have with customers is valuable. You can also gather qualitative data by asking customers essay-style questions. Most marketers use a combination of the two.

Overall, if you can create a positive emotional experience for those who buy your products or services, they will return to you again and again with the emotional expectation that they will be pleased with the results.

Do you believe that this is the case with all industries or specifically in the tech and gadget world? Share with us your thoughts and opinions. 

Roz Bahrami
Roz Bahrami
Roz Bahrami is a blogger for SkyPrep, an online training software for companies to train employees and measure results. Roz is a regular contributor to blogs related to corporate training, L&D, and HR technology. Visit my personal blog at

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