Rational Purchasing Consciousness

One of the marketing principles people always seem to nod their heads about when Sharon and I speak is “rational purchasing consciousness”.   Simply put, consumers like to PERCEIVE themselves as smart shoppers.

Makes sense, right?  Most people agree.

The problem comes in when people try to IMPLEMENT emotional benefits from the research they’ve done.  For example, suppose your surveys and telephone groups for a natural weight loss supplement come back suggesting your audience is most interested in feeling “normal” again, removing the pain of “not fitting in”, particularly while shopping for new clothes.

Here’s what you don’t do.

You don’t say “Feel normal again when you buy our clothing brand!”

See, the consumer doesn’t really want to KNOW they’re making purchasing decisions for emotional reasons.  So no matter how logically you trace the path from weight to feeling “abnormal”, such a rational approach is almost guaranteed to fail.

Here’s what’s better.

SHOW a reasonably sized woman (not a supermodel) buying something nice while she talks about some more rational reason to believe. (For example, “I lost 7 pounds this month”).   Or show her eating something absolutely delicious while she’s WEARING something nice .

Get it?  The main point is, because so many purchase motivations aren’t socially desirable, and because consumers HATE to think they make purchases for emotional reasons (that would make them “dumb shoppers”, not smart shoppers), you want to SHOW THEM, not tell them, while you give them plenty of rational support for their interest in feeling smart.

People might buy things based on emotion, but they don’t want to feel like a dumb-ass.

Hope this helps.

Dr. G 🙂

PS – Here are the concrete steps for executing an effective emotional marketing campaign online.  First target your audience based on keywords … one bulls-eye and a small set which surround it on the same “keyword archery target”.   Then study the hell out of those keywords using social media, PPC surveys, telephone follow ups, and competitive analysis tools (not keyword spy tools – much more).   Then translate those findings into a series of advertising concepts and test them on the same keyword audience until the system buzzes.  To learn more, click here now