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The Complete Roadmap to Emotional Marketing Success

13 minutes read
September 15, 2023

Emotions are the secret sauce not only in nurturing relationships but also in influencing modern consumers’ choices. In a world saturated with marketing messages, making your audience genuinely care is the key.

How? By making them feel something. Forge an emotional connection that transcends the screen. Craft content that aligns with your audience’s values and mirrors your brand’s essence. This emotional resonance is your ticket to standing out.

Today’s consumers don’t just want to buy; they want to connect. They aim to build genuine relationships with the brands they choose.

So, what’s the secret to making your audience not just listen, but genuinely care?

It’s about making them feel something.

In this guide, we’ll show you the art of emotional writing tactics and how to strike that emotional chord with your audience in the digital age.

What is emotional marketing?

But what exactly are emotions? They’re not just about how your body feels; they paint a picture of your mental state.

Emotional marketing uses feelings to grab attention, making people remember, share, and act. It usually picks one feeling, like joy or sadness, to get a reaction.

But what are emotions? They depict your mental state. For example, at 8:30 a.m., I might feel tired but slightly annoyed due to fatigue and excited about the day ahead.

Emotions, like colors, vary infinitely. Robert Plutchik’s ‘ Wheel of Emotions’ illustrates this.

In marketing, the specific emotion you target matters. It influences your copy, visuals, and overall campaign effectiveness.

Why Emotional Marketing Works

We’re emotional beings by nature. We can’t help but feel, whether it’s during a heartbreak or while watching a thrilling movie. It’s in our DNA, and this is one reason why emotional marketing is so effective. Here are a few more:

  1. Great First Impressions: When meeting someone new, what sticks with you? Likely, it’s the moments that made you laugh or cry. The same applies to businesses. Given the choice between two ads, one merely talking about products and another that tugs at your heartstrings, which leaves a lasting impression? It’s the emotional one. First impressions, in a matter of seconds, shape your perception of a brand or product. Emotional marketing excels at creating these memorable impressions.
  2. Deciding with Hearts: Think about your last significant purchase. When push came to shove, what influenced your decision? More often than not, it’s our emotions. We want to feel certain, and our emotions guide our choices. Dove’s marketing is a prime example. Their inclusive ads foster emotions like acceptance, serenity, and self-love, making their products seem like emotional investments. Studies confirm that emotions, not just information, drive purchasing decisions. Among 1,400 successful ad campaigns, those with emotional content performed twice as well (31% vs. 16%) as those with purely rational content.
  3. Inspiring Action: Emotional marketing doesn’t just prompt purchases; it also fuels other actions that grow your brand. Different emotions lead to various activities:
    – Happiness: Encourages sharing, boosting brand awareness. Positive content spreads rapidly on social media.
    – Sadness: Fosters empathy and connection, inspiring giving. People tend to act on behalf of others when they feel empathy.
    – Surprise and Fear: Encourage brand loyalty. Brands that help consumers find comfort in uncertain times earn their loyalty.
    – Anger and Passion: Generate stubbornness, leading to viral content and loyal followers. Strong emotions prompt content sharing.

Knowing why emotional marketing works, let’s explore how you can incorporate it Organically into your marketing efforts or, perhaps, launch a new campaign.

Want readers to connect with your blog? Use emotion.

Here are Five ways to make your content resonate.

1. Tell a story

Have you ever noticed how a good story just sticks in your mind? 

That’s the magic of storytelling, and it’s a marketer’s best friend. When we share tales that tug at the heartstrings or light up faces with joy, we’re not just selling products but making connections. 

Let’s take Proctor & Gamble’s “Thank You Mom” commercial from the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, for instance. Showcasing Olympians and the unwavering support from their moms was a brilliant way to resonate with mothers everywhere.

But stories don’t always have to come from flashy ads. 

They can be in a heartwarming testimonial, the touching journey of a company’s beginnings on an ‘about us’ page, or even the purpose behind charity campaigns that put a human face to a brand. 

MetLife’s ad, “My Father is a Liar”, is another beautiful example. It paints the sacrifices parents make for their children, tugging at our heartstrings and reminding us of our family ties.

Think of storytelling as more than just words; it’s an experience. And trust me, a relatable story will always be more memorable than just listing what a product does. 

Suppose a fellow fishing enthusiast watches a video of a dog and its owner enjoying their day by the lake. 

In that case, they will likely remember the brand and look it up on social media for more heartwarming content. Because at the end of the day, it’s not just about selling; it’s about sharing stories that matter.

2. Lead with color.

Ever walked into a room and just felt… different? Maybe calmer, excited, or even a bit on edge? 

Well, there’s a good chance the room’s colour had a hand in that. It’s called colour psychology and a lot more powerful than most of us realize.

Colours aren’t just pretty to look at; they evoke strong emotions. 

Consider the vibrant red of Coca-Cola or the soothing green of Starbucks. Why do you think those colours were chosen? 

Because they make us feel a certain way, Red, for example, can stir up emotions like love, excitement, and joy. It’s no wonder Coca-Cola’s branding screams friendly and energetic vibes. 

Meanwhile, green tends to be tied to feelings of harmony, growth, and health. It perfectly aligns with the wholesome, nature-centric image Starbucks portrays.

From therapists choosing calming wall paints to football teams picking jerseys that rev up the spirit, colors influence our mood in a big way. 

It’s not just about what’s trending; it’s about the feelings and connections a colour can forge. So, when crafting an ad or even deciding on the colour of a new product, remember that colour does more than meet the eye. 

Whether it’s the backdrop of an advertisement, the outfits people are wearing, or even standout objects in the frame, our colour choices can leave a lasting emotional imprint.

3. Give customers an ideal Image

Ever watched an ad and thought, ‘Man, I wish I felt like that!’? That’s because some savvy marketers aren’t just tapping into how we feel right now, but they’re showing us how amazing we could feel. 

It’s like they’re painting this awesome picture of our ‘best self’ and saying, ‘Hey, our product can get you there.’

Take Old Spice, for instance. Remember that whole ‘The Man Your Man Could Smell Like’ campaign? Hilarious, right? 

They weren’t just selling a scent; they were selling a vibe. A ‘look-how-cool-and-smooth-you-could-be’ kind of vibe. 

And they nailed it by suggesting that with just a splash of their product, you (or your significant other) could be just as dashing and confident as the guy on screen.

So, while good marketing says, ‘Here’s a solution to your problem,’ great emotional marketing goes, ‘And hey, you’re gonna feel awesome using it!’ It’s all about selling that dream, that ideal image.

4. Branding

Remember when I brought up how the vibe of your brand can steer your content’s emotional course? 

Here’s the twist: the feelings your content stirs up can also mould your brand’s identity. 

Let’s take GEICO as our guinea pig. Who’d have thought you could make car insurance fun? Yet, here they are, cracking us up with their GEICO Gecko!

Maybe your business is in a field that doesn’t scream ‘exciting.’ No sweat! Sometimes, the magic trick is pairing your brand with an emotion no one would expect. Sure, it might raise a few eyebrows initially, but standing out from the crowd? Priceless.

I know, I know. With all this talk about SEO and analytics, it’s easy to forget that content marketing has a heart. And that heart? It’s all emotion. Nail that emotional connection and you’ve got an audience that keeps coming back and can’t stop talking about you.

By the way, ever heard of Peter Yang? Dude practically dreams in marketing terms. With his heavyweight marketing and HR background, he kickstarted businesses from resume writing to mock interview training. Two decades in, and he’s still acing the marketing game for both ventures. And guess what? He’s dishing out all that wisdom over at Keap. Definitely worth a read!

5. Show the benefits

You didn’t whip up your product just because you were bored on a Sunday. 

You made it to fill a gap, fix an issue, or make someone’s day better. 

But here’s where it gets tricky: many business folks get so jazzed about all the cool stuff their product does that they totally space on why it even matters.

It’s cool and all to flex the latest tech in your product, but most folks are looking for something other than a tech spec rundown. They’re thinking, ‘Okay, but how’s this gonna make my life a bit more breezy? 

Is it gonna save me some precious minutes? Get me closer to my dreams? Or maybe make me the talk of the town?’

Cold facts? Eh, they’re alright. But tug at those heartstrings with real-life benefits? Now you’re talking!

Tracking the Results of Emotional Marketing

How do you measure the success of your emotional marketing? 

You’re not alone! Just like any other marketing strategy, it’s essential to measure how your audience feels and responds.

Now, while traditional metrics like clicks and purchases are crucial, emotional marketing demands a bit more digging. For starters, consider asking your audience directly. Running surveys or creating feedback sections during your campaign can be a goldmine. These real, raw reactions not only tell you how you’re doing but also where you can fine-tune your approach. Want a deeper dive? Organizing a focus group can offer even more insights.

But here’s a fun part: emotions often translate into actions. As a general rule, happiness gets people sharing, sadness encourages generosity, fear fosters loyalty, and, interestingly, anger can make content go viral. So, if you roll out a joy-filled video and see it getting shared left, right, and center on social media, you’re probably on the right track. Conversely, a campaign based on evoking trust or loyalty might see an uptick in email sign-ups or follows.

In short, keep an eye on both the emotional responses and the actions they inspire. It’s a combo of the two that truly paints a picture of your emotional marketing’s effectiveness.

In a word

if you want to make your marketing stand out, sprinkle in some emotion. Think of it as your secret sauce.

Get to know your audience, find out what makes them tick, and align that with your goals. It’s not just about flashy ads; it’s about getting them to feel something real. 

And let’s be real, with so much bland content out there, a dash of emotion can make a world of difference. Ready for a tip? 

Toss in some ‘tasty’ and sensory words; you’re golden. Trust me, when your readers connect emotionally, they’ll not only remember you, but they’ll also chat about you over their coffee breaks!

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