Channel emotion in your marketing, not reason

Humans are emotional beings. We like to think that reason and reason alone informs our decisions, but how we feel is a much more powerful driver.

Every single decision we make is fundamentally emotional. No matter how much we think our decision is based around reason or logic, it’s emotion that prevails; it’s emotion that persuades us to buy, like, share and comment. Emotions aren’t the enemy of reason, but rather a crucial part of it.

Despite this, we can’t contemplate the thought of big decisions being made purely on emotion. In our minds emotional translates to irresponsible or irrational.

Think of a time where you argued passionately about something and backed up your assertions with cold, hard facts. Your argument was focused and reinforced with evidence – it could easily have been mistaken for a response in a debate held at the Oxford Union. And yet, the person you’re trying to convince doubles down and fails to see the merit of your argument.

Think of that cloudy apple juice you bought on a hot summer day. You didn’t think about how the juice would contribute to one of your five a day or save you from imminent dehydration. You bought the juice because you imagined its sweet, refreshing, premium taste. Your taste buds craved cloudy apple juice – any other beverage wouldn’t have done the job.

Or, think of a time you were trying to convince your parents to let you do something. Your logic was sound. Your extensive list of responsibilities proved to any reasonable mind that you had successfully bridged the gap between adolescence and adulthood. You were ready. Yet they wouldn’t budge. You resorted to saying you’re scared of being left out. They may not have reversed their decision but tugging at their heartstrings at least gave you a fighting chance.

It’s the same in marketing.

You can’t sell on reason alone. Emotion is the ultimate driver. You must appeal to emotion. The ability to channel emotion and showcase a human side goes a long way to making your brand approachable, trustworthy and reliable.

To stir and sway your audience you need to channel emotion. Whether it’s happiness, anger, fear – emotion has the power to cut through the noise. It removes barriers and forges connection.

So yes, logic and reason are still necessary to achieving any objective, but they are nothing without emotion. Emotion engages, influences and ultimately convinces.

Are there any instances you can think of where an emotional approach would hinder effectiveness? Tweet us at @otbtweeter with your thoughts!

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