As much as we like to think of ourselves as rational beings, we’re all driven by our emotions to at least some extent.
That can mean a lot of things. Sometimes it means trusting your gut feeling over what your logical mind is telling you. Other times, it means buying an extra tub of ice cream because you’re sad, or frustrated, and you feel you deserve a sweet treat.
But what’s this got to do with marketing, and how can companies make the most of emotions to earn a place at the top of their customers’ lists? Read on to find out.
A quick primer: what’s emotional marketing?
In as few words as possible, emotional marketing revolves around the idea of making use of people’s feelings to encourage them to buy particular products or services.
To create an emotional marketing strategy, you’d generally want to start by choosing the kinds of emotions you want your campaign to gear itself towards. Are you trying to provoke angry responses? Or are you targeting customers’ love of feeling valued and respected?
The following emotional chart is a helpful guide to figuring out what kinds of feelings you can focus on:
Image sourced from flowing data
If you’re wondering how you can take that theory and apply it in practice, you’re in the right place. We’re going to walk through some of the most important factors to pay attention to when it comes to emotional marketing, and teach you how to win customers’ hearts.
First impressions count
The moment a customer, lead, or prospect first interacts with your brand is always crucial. They’ve got to come away with a great impression, and for emotional marketing to be successful, you’ve got to create an emotional reaction within them.
Visuals are a great way to achieve this.
When someone clicks on your website (or follows a link to a product page, for example), your visual storytelling should jump out at them right away. That storytelling is what creates an instant, unconscious emotional reaction in your customers, and these feelings form the basis of their first impression of you.
Now we’re going to look at three key components of an emotionally appealing webpage.
A site loads in your browser. What’s the first thing you see?
Chances are, the page’s layout is one of them.
A cluttered, disorganized layout makes the page itself look messy, even if the contents are excellent. Bad layouts create frustration with your brand, which isn’t the kind of emotional response we’re aiming for.
Let’s look at an example. This page for the PandaDoc Salesforce integration has a clean, visually appealing layout that shows you what the integration looks like even if you don’t read one word on the left hand side. The words themselves are also well-chosen, though we’ll talk about words shortly.
Image sourced from Pandadoc
In short, the layout you use should be conducive to the feelings you’re trying to use. A major part of that is the following factor: color.
It’s no secret that colors have emotional associations, as per color theory. Even beyond this though, the colors you choose have a huge impact on the impression you create on your customers.
We’ll consider another example.
This task management software page uses quite a lot of colors. The words ‘task management’ immediately pop in oranges and pinks, standing out from the rest of the page and drawing viewers’ eyes in. They contrast with the green of the logo and the signup button, but not in a way that hurts the eyes or distracts.
The colors in the graphic on the right create the impression of a busy schedule, which is exactly what the product helps to address. This shows that the designers considered how to show their product as a solution through the color scheme they chose.
And a visible solution to a visible problem creates an emotional response: relief.
Anyone who knows anything about SEO and social media can tell you that the words you use are hugely important.
Even without considering SEO, your copy needs to be written carefully. That’s because words have both denotations (dictionary definitions) and connotations (commonly understood associations), both of which contribute to the emotional response they provoke.
So, to get the responses you want, you’ve got to pick the perfect words that generate those feelings.
Keep leads and prospects engaged
Now that we’ve made a good first impression, we need to keep that up by continuing to provoke emotional responses. These two tips are absolutely critical.
Carry that first impression forward
Eliciting emotional responses from one page exclusively means limiting yourself.
In other words, you’ve got to carry your marketing strategy through to the rest of your website, as well as your other touchpoints.
Bring emotions into everything, even things that aren’t directly marketing-related. For example, someone looking up ‘how does TensorFlow work’ should still be engaging emotionally with that content thanks to its wording, layout, and color scheme. Graphics like the one below are hugely helpful.
Image sourced from databricks.com
The most important thing to note is that your messaging and emotional appeals need to be consistent. So if you’re focused on making your customers feel inspired, for example, then you can’t jar them out of that feeling with a few pages that don’t do anything to boost their inspiration.
Show that your brand is worth the while
Even shoppers who get a stellar first impression from your website or products can change their minds if you don’t give them any reasons to believe in your company. You’ve got to prove to them that it’s a great idea to spend money with your brand.
One way to do this is to find an ambassador program for brands that works for you. This helps you build an authentic connection with your customers while boosting your own reach.
It’s also a good idea to aim your efforts towards personalization. This is a direct way to prove to customers that you value them as individuals, which is a sure way to win their hearts.
You can also go a long way with excellent customer service, as we’re going to explore below.
That personal connection in customer service
Your brand has a human side. There are a few ways to show this to your customers, though top-tier customer service is an absolute must.
If you can successfully make your customers feel seen, heard, and valued as individuals, you’ll leave them feeling like your company truly cares. That’s a sure way to win their hearts.
The two following points are integral to meeting and exceeding customer expectations when it comes to customer service.
Connecting quickly and efficiently
Contact centers generally have benchmarks that establish the standard of service they want to provide. These benchmarks make it easier to meet customers’ needs and ensure they come away from an interaction with your brand with a positive impression, and with good feelings.
Here’s what typical benchmarks look like:
Image sourced from Finances Online
In order to answer the majority of calls within twenty seconds and resolve customers’ queries in under a minute, your contact center has to be staffed by knowledgeable staff. Your software also has to direct callers to the right place.
That’s where tools like IVR software come in. They help your customers get to where they need to go, without keeping them waiting or asking them to repeat their reason for calling more than once.
Using the right tools makes your emotional marketing more meaningful. That’s because great customer service shows you care about your customers, which helps them care about you in turn.
Putting customers’ needs first
To that end, it’s very important to prioritize your customers’ needs. Once your marketing strategies have hooked them emotionally, you need to make sure you keep that emotional investment going by supporting them in exactly the ways they need.
This also helps them feel safe trusting your company, which is vital to successful emotional marketing.
Using the right cloud call center solutions is a key part of prioritizing customer needs. Your solution of choice needs to make it easy to connect with customers in the ways they want to connect with you, whether that’s via phone calls, video calls, text, social media, or anything else.
Essentially, you need to figure out what they prefer and then provide it to them.
Tips to take with you
Since we’re all emotional beings, we make decisions using our feelings – and this can work to marketers’ advantage if they play their cards right.
In a nutshell, every aspect of your business and marketing strategy, from the call forwarding service you use to the way your content is laid out, needs to take emotions into account. You’ve got to prioritize your customers’ feelings so they feel valued.
By putting time and effort towards emotional marketing, you can create lasting impressions on customers and help them become brand loyalists. Both the actual marketing component and the customer service you provide are necessary for that to work. Once you have loyal customers you may wish to launch a customer-to-customer referral software program to generate more customers.