Utilizing Neuromarketing to Enhance Customer Experiences: A Look into Martin Lindstrom’s Buyology

I have long been a fan of Martin Lindstrom’s work and am grateful for opportunities to work with him through the years. As you likely know, Martin has conducted extensive studies on customer behavior, branding, and neuromarketing, which he has eloquently shared in his many books. For this post, let’s look at a few lessons on how to draw customers to your brand – thanks to Martin’s classic book:

Here’s are a few highlights from Buyology.

Iconic Brands Evoke Emotion: Lindstrom’s research shows the tremendous power of evocative brands. For example, the Tiffany blue box can cause heart rates to increase by 20%, and the Marlboro red color triggers cravings in smokers. Even the smell of Play-Doh is immediately recognizable to blindfolded children. Undeniably, sensory stimuli shape brand recognition and consumer cravings.

It’s Important to Engage All the Senses: Lindstrom warns that marketing shouldn’t just be visual. Other senses, like smell and sound, significantly impact consumer behavior. Supermarkets and restaurants use artificial food scents to entice customers, and the nationality of music in a wine shop can sway consumers’ choice between French and German wines.

Sexual Imagery Is Not Always Effective: Sexual content in advertisements may capture attention, but that attention often doesn’t translate into product recall. According to Lindstrom’s study, only 1 in 10 men exposed to sexually suggestive ads could remember the product, half as many as those presented with non-sexually suggestive advertisements.

Now let’s look at what you can and should do to leverage Buyology in your business:

  1. Assess & Integrate Sensory Input: At every customer touchpoint, scrutinize the sensory stimuli presented. Consider what smell, sound, texture, and visual elements will enhance high-value moments in the customer’s journey. Lindstrom’s research indicates that these sensory experiences can and will help you form powerful emotional connections with your customers.
  2. Optimize Existing Sensory Stimuli: If important touchpoints have sensory elements integrated, analyze whether they’re eliciting the desired emotional response. Are they fostering the optimal customer experience, or are they detracting?
  3. Simplify Sensory Input: If a touchpoint is cluttered with sensory stimuli, consider simplifying it. For example, are there too many signs on the door to your building or in the entryway? If so, streamline the visuals. Remember, the goal is to create a meaningful connection, not overwhelm the customer.
  4. Incorporate Sensory Elements and Focus on Emotions Beyond the Sale: Undeniably, positively activating your prospects’ senses and emotions will lead to increased sales. Doing the same for existing customers will also drive repeat business and referrals.

In a cluttered advertising and marketing environment, sensory engagement and emotional connection will help your brand stand out and achieve lasting success!

To learn more about leveraging neuromarketing and sensory elements throughout the journey of your customers, please contact me at josephmichelli.com/contact.

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Joseph A. Michelli, Ph.D. is a professional speaker and chief experience officer at The Michelli Experience. A New York Times #1 bestselling author, Dr. Michelli and his team consult with some of the world’s best customer experience companies.

Follow on Twitter: @josephmichelli

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