Emotional Marketing - Power Beyond Anything Else
Let’s admit it – we all want to be happy. After all, is it not one of the founding principles on how this great country came to be? "Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness". The element of emotion, such as happiness for example, when implemented into a product or brand is fascinating. The human emotion is powerful and it drives many of our intentions and our desires. It can also define who we are as a person. In 1943, Abraham Maslow proposed a theory on the basic human needs called "A Theory of Human Motivation".
Many of the basic needs in his hierarchy deal with emotions. I believe that emotions like love, self-confidence and other psychological needs are important to humans. If a product can have an emotional bond to the consumer, it has boundless potential. Just think about the last time a TV or radio commercial influenced you emotionally. Images of a product and thoughts of how you relate to it are probably being shaped in your head at the moment.
A great example of this is Kraft’s Macaroni and Cheese "Imported from your Childhood" campaign. What Kraft does through its slogan is reincarnate the past into the present in a form of nostalgia to the many (and many indeed) Americans, and those from other parts of the world, that were served a fresh bowl of macaroni and cheese during their childhood from their parents, myself included. Kraft’s slogan makes me think of when my mother used to make macaroni and cheese for dinner when I was a child every time I make myself a bowl. In other words, this simple exercise turns mere macaroni into a rhetoric time machine because of how it deals with the element of emotions.
Now imagine if Kraft’s Macaroni and Cheese slogan said something like "Macaroni and 100% cheddar cheese, made delicious". Though it may sound good, it’s not as effective and is nothing compared to the current "Imported from your Childhood" as it would not have the emotional effect. I believe that this very reason is why the product is successful.
In my opinion, an advertising campaign that simply tells us that a product does A or B is not enough. We need to implement a way that will allow consumers to relate with the product emotionally. Is it a new car that will remind you of the times your parents first taught you how to drive? Is it a restaurant that your family goes to every Sunday? Is it an electronic security system that will assure your safety when you are home? Or is it something that endorses our military that awakened your sense of patriotism? The emotional element creates an experience, and I believe that it is key to creating successful campaigns.
Now, off to make myself a bowl of macaroni and cheese. In the meantime, I'll leave you with a relevant quote from Helen Keller:
"The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart."
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