Brain Science in Advertising

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When I first entered the world of advertising, I was told “Whoever controls the creative controls the client”. What that means is whoever writes the best commercial is going to be the one who wins the client’s business. That’s how billion-dollar advertising accounts decide who will handle their business, the person with the best creative ideas, not the lowest cost provider.

It’s not about which medium you choose to advertise your business because all media can reach a consumer. It’s all about connecting with a consumer on an emotionally and engaging level if you want to earn their trust as your new customer. 

As a business owner, it is important to focus on creating an emotionally engaging commercial message if you want to reach new customers.

Consumers today come equipped with a smartphone that has 10 times more computing power than the space shuttle. With that much technology at their fingertips, they won’t fall for the same old worn out advertising
clichés. According to Rishad Tobaccowala, CGO at Publicis, one of the world’s largest advertising companies, “You are marketing to gods”. That means you must talk to them in a respectful manner, especially, the Millennial consumer. 

Here are some highlights from the latest Roth Capital Partners 2018-2019 Millennial Survey. This is their seventh annual proprietary survey examining current trends, spending patterns and favorite brands across five consumer categories including dining and restaurants; healthy food, beverage and snacking; fitness and wellness; infant, juvenile and pet; and, fashion, personal care and décor. 

The survey, conducted in partnership with MFour Mobile Research, features 181 questions and was completed by 2,500 Millennial-aged women and men.

  • Millennials are benefitting from low unemployment and 77% think the economy will be the same or better next year.
  • More than half have decreased their social media usage over the last year, mainly due to a perception that it is unhealthy
  • Only 26% of Millennials are not okay sharing personal information for a more tailored experience and the vast majority are happy with recommendations from Amazon, Netflix and Spotify
  • Two-thirds of Millennials prefer to research significant purchases online, but 57% still prefer to transact in-store
  • 27% of Millennials are comfortable purchasing groceries online (up from 22% in our prior survey)
  • Millennials significantly favor Amazon over other online apparel sites and 62% of Millennials are Amazon Prime members
  • More than one-third of Millennials have an Amazon Echo, Google Home, or similar product and 24% of those use them to regularly make purchases
  • 15% of Millennials have used virtual reality (“VR”) to evaluate furniture purchases, while 16% have used “virtual mirrors” to try on makeup or clothing
  • Clif, Kind and Nature Valley are the favorite protein bars for Millennials
  • More than half of Millennials belong to traditional fitness clubs like Planet Fitness, 24 Hour Fitness and Gold’s Gym, while 28% attend classes at boutiques like CrossFit, YogaWorks, SoulCycle and Orangetheory
  • Climbing, hiking, yoga and cycling are among the most popular fitness activities for Millennials, while Black Diamond, Mammut and Arc’Teryx are the leading climbing apparel brands
  • Nike, Adidas and Vans are the leading fashion footwear brands among Millennials while Gucci is the favorite luxury brand
  • 34% of Millennials are more likely to purchase Nike products after the company’s Colin Kaepernick ad campaign, while 15% are less likely

The compelling thread throughout all these statistics is the emotional engagement the brands make with consumers. It has nothing to do with price. It has everything to do with how the brands make the consumers feel about the brand that drives the brand loyalty.

One of the most striking revelations is that 34% of young people are more likely to buy Nike products because of the Colin Kaepernick ad campaign and only 15% say they are less likely. After the ad came out, Nike’s online sales actually grew 31% from the Sunday of Labor Day weekend through Tuesday, as compared with a 17% gain recorded for the same period of 2017.

It’s not about offering a lower price to attract a new customer. It’s about stirring emotions in consumers that compel them to interact with your company. That’s why you want to on your message.

There is an abundance of new brain science and consumer psychology that can help you get started in the right direction. If you would like some professional assistance to craft an emotionally engaging commercial message, drop us an email and we’ll be happy to help. 

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