Many brands and businesses understand that human emotion plays a key role when it comes to deciding if someone should or should not purchase. Advertisers have been using this tactic since the beginning of time.
When people are subjected to certain images, the parts of the brain that are responsible for emotion fire, leading to stronger memories in their minds. This can often result in consumers taking action based on these feelings.
One of the main emotions that companies want to trigger is to make them care about their cause. Instead of focusing on what their product can do and why the customer would benefit from having it, they shift towards making their viewers feel something for them.
Above all else, brand messages must be authentic and unique or they run the risk of becoming just another company.
There are a few ways that this can be done. Here is how brands make people care about their products.
Appealing To Their Values
When a brand uses their company values to promote themselves, it can have a huge impact on how customers interact with them. When someone has the same beliefs as the company they are buying from, they are far more likely to purchase from that company.
But how can brands get their values across without blatantly using them as a sales pitch?
Firstly, they must know what their core values are. Many companies share common goals but a core value separates them from the rest. From here, they must think about how these core values are implemented throughout the entire business. This goes beyond marketing and advertising efforts; it includes customer service, product delivery, manufacturing and sourcing methods, and so much more.
For example, Kool8, a reusable water bottle company, is a business that leads with its values to help poorer parts of the world access clean water. They donate 20% of all their profits to charities to help fulfil this promise. And the results have already been noticed.
They may be a startup but they have already seen their water bottles sell out, with new customers having to register for updates. Furthermore, their good has seen them gain praise in articles like this and this.
The bottom line is this:
When a business has a good cause and great company values, customers are going to notice and will pick that brand over others. Having something to believe in is powerful and makes people care.
Next, brands make people care through data-driven marketing. While this doesn’t sound as ‘human’ as the previous method, it can be just as effective at getting across that they have the greater good in mind.
According to ComboApp, data-driven marketing can be defined as the following:
“The methodology of extracting actionable insights tied to consumer behavior from large data sets in order to predict consumer behavior in relation to new products, marketing positioning and users’ likelihood of interacting with a brand.”
Data-driven marketing techniques give brands actionable insights to make better decisions.
Companies can see how their customers feel, think and react to their various marketing efforts, from how the message is shown to its voice. Considering that customers are craving more personalized marketing, there is a great opportunity to analyze their habits and see what they respond to the best.
Now, since we already know that emotions play a key role in decision-making, brands can use their data to produce content, adverts and more to tailor their actions and show that they care about a certain cause.
An article by Digital Authority shows that by understanding customer behavior, brands can expect an increase in customer retention rate by 36% and a rise in sales win rates by 38%.
It doesn’t matter if the message creates joy, deep thought or sympathy; the important thing is that brands can use the information generated from data-driven marketing.
Telling Original Stories
Ok, now back to the more human methods.
Telling original stories is amazing for showing people that a brand cares about them or they have the wider population at the forefront of their goals. They build connections and relationships, which ultimately lead to great action being taken in the form of spreading the word, purchasing or inspiring others.
The great thing about stories is that through sharing and bonding through experiences, customers are much better at remembering that brand in the future when they have a decision to make.
Take Nike for example and their ‘Dream Crazy’ adverts. They show when kids think bigger and differently compared to everyone else, they are the ones that go on to become the next Serena Williams’ and the LeBron James’ of the world.
These stories aim to inspire the future generation – and by using Nike products, they can achieve their dreams.
This is a powerful message and is very effective.
Brands must understand the narrative they are trying to set. They need to ask themselves questions like ‘what experiences have led them to where they are right now?’, ‘how can they get this across to their customers?’ and ‘how can these experiences inspire others to take action?’
From here, the message can be embedded across the business, such as setting the tone in blog posts or in social media campaigns. Brands must think what audience members should be taking away after reading the message.
Remember, original stories are unique to that particular brand and, again, are key to distinguishing themselves in the often overcrowded marketplace.
At the end of the day, it’s just about being human. After all, people respond best to other people’s’ feelings and experiences.
By telling original stories, using data-driven methods and appealing to the audience’s values, brands can make people care about their cause. This builds long-lasting connections and relationships with customers to keep them loyal and coming back for more in the future.
But, more importantly, brands make people care because it means that they are getting the customers they want to be associated with them.
About the author: Codrin Arsene is a digital strategist with over 10 years of experience in brand development and the CEO @ Digital Authority Partners