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Humans are feeling creatures.

In fact, according to research, feelings provide the basis for human reasoning. We don’t make decisions by delegating cognitive tasks but through an emotional foundation.

So, what does that mean for marketing?

You’ve guessed it:

To run a successful business, you must attract customers by focusing on emotions in sales.

Leading your brand with emotional sales tactics not only has the potential to make your marketing more successful but a lot easier to accomplish, from beginning to end.

A study from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences indicates that humans have 27 different emotions.

So which ones should a marketer induce? And how?

In this article, we’ll outline a few lesser-known emotions and tactics to help you connect with your audience on a (scientifically) deeper level.

What is Emotional Marketing and Why Does it Work?

Emotional marketing is the effort by marketers to tap into human emotions to influence consumers to engage their brand and buy their products and services.

Some of the strongest memories you have likely surround a certain emotion: hearing back from that big job offer, getting married, winning a prize, scaling a mountain, experiencing childbirth…

Whether it’s fear, happiness, hope, amazement, or excitement, events lined with strong emotion are remembered.

By sewing these strong emotions into your marketing strategy, you’ll be setting your audience up for experiences that they carry with them for years to come.

However, the trick is making sure the memories you’re influencing are connected to positive emotions. Make sure you don’t end up as the brand that brings up negative emotions and bad memories, because it will be difficult to claw your way back from such a reputation.

Here are three emotional sales tactics your brand can play on this year.

1. Inspiration Gives You Wings

Emotions in sales go far beyond happiness and sadness.

That’s where altruism comes in.

But what does it mean?

Altruism can be defined as a subset of kindness. The emotion of selflessness. When brands take altruistic action by helping others without expectation of a reward, customers respond in extremely positive ways.

In fact, studies have proven that altruistic behavior is contagious, having the ability to breed kindness beyond the initial act.

However, randomly implementing altruism for this purpose only may come across as ingenuine. So, to properly incorporate altruism into your marketing strategy, consider the following steps:

  • Create a community of customers where everyone can connect with each other and where you can share ideas and updates on your cause.
  • Inspire teamwork among your employees to work together and make a difference.
  • Connect with other potential partners to join in on your efforts to doing good.
  • Give away services or products to organizations in need and spread the good news!



2. Inspiration Gives You Wings

The feeling of being inspired carries along with a range of other emotions as well.

Think about the last time you were inspired.

You probably felt joy, hope, and excitement as well – all of which are powerful emotions in sales.

By creating an aspirational campaign, you’ll be able to engage in your audience’s goals and dreams, becoming the beacon of light for the visions your audience wants to reach.

So, how does one incorporate this in their emotional sales tactics?

First, you need to know (in and out) how your product helps your consumers reach their goals.

Think of Red Bull – one of today’s most brilliantly marketed brands.

Through their “Red Bull Gives You Wings” campaign, the brand featured athletes achieving their dreams. This helps viewers and consumers associate the feelings of excitement and hope with the brand – a new sign that reaching your dreams is possible.

Create consistent visual branding with a relevant and inspiring tagline that keeps your audience feeling alive.



3. Wisely-Constructed Fear

While fear may seem like a scary emotional sales tactic to use, hear us out.

Some of the most well-known brands have used fear in their strategies as it’s proven to be a very influential emotion.

However, the type of fear that’s successful in marketing is a lot different than the fear of threats. So please, don’t threaten your customers!

Instead, use the type of fear that engages consumers’ subconscious minds. By activating our fight-or-flight response, we hold onto what’s comfortable, thereby increasing brand loyalty.

Not convinced yet?

Let’s consider the popular marketing tactic, FOMO - the “fear of missing out”.

According to research, 65% of social media users “suffer” from FOMO surrounding news, events or important social updates which is why social media is plagued with limited time offers and displayed stock levels.

Tap into this FOMO emotion and watch sales surge upwards – anxiously.


The Tear-Jerking Finale

What an emotional rollercoaster it’s been.

Thanks for sticking it out.

Out of these three emotional sales tactics, we hope you walk away with one, key understanding:

Emotions are powerful.

They can make your marketing memorable, and help your brand connect with consumers on a deeper level, so you can influence them to take action.

Plan it out, Know what emotions you want to target, and how your product or service can provide this. Then, weave them together and leave the rest to your audience’s natural hardwiring.

By Diana Myers

Diana Myers is the features editor of MarTech Gazette. A Canadian-in-Colombia, this environmental journalist and content strategist can often be found nose-deep in a large-scale eco project. Outside of that, you'll find me exploring national parks, experimenting with herbal potions or kickboxing.