The psychology of marketing is complex. In a previous post, we covered how the rule of reciprocity, the power of simplicity, the strength of word-of-mouth, and social media can impact consumer decisions. Now, let’s explore three more “hacks” you can leverage when reaching out to your target audience.
(You may notice we even sneaked a few “hacks” into this post. Can you spot them?)
1. Choose Your Colors Wisely
It’s no secret that the colors marketers choose when designing logos or promoting their company and products play an influential role in consumer sentiment. To the human brain, different colors translate to specific emotions, moods or even help to convey certain messages, which can benefit marketing and advertising professionals when leveraged correctly. Advertisers and marketers must also consider the shade of the color, since going with the wrong shade can leave consumers feeling turned off. A deeper tone can communicate sadness or loss, but on the flip side, it can also convey luxury. For example, the department store Nordstrom utilizes a light grey logo to communicate maturity and sophistication.
Another example of a brand utilizing a smart color choice is Target. The color of Target’s iconic bull’s eye logo is bright red, which (through subconscious color association) signals to consumers that the brand is bold, active and exciting. This in turn translates to the atmosphere of Target’s stores — making consumers excited to shop.
To ensure that your color selections map back to your brand’s goals, it’s important to understand the implied meaning behind some basic colors:
2. The Left-Digit Effect
Moving into the realm of psychological pricing strategies, we want to cover the Left-Digit Effect, and explore how marketers and advertisers can use it to build two different types of perceptions among consumers.
Stemming from a 2005 study, researchers explained that “Nine-ending prices will be perceived to be smaller than a price one cent higher if the left-most digit changes to a lower level (e.g., $3.00 to $2.99), but not if the left-most digit remains unchanged (e.g., $3.60 to $3.59).”
This phenomenon takes place because in English we read left to right, and our brains see the lower digit on the left and perceive the price as lower than it actually is — even if it’s only one cent off of the next whole dollar. Additionally, when prices end in a nine, they are viewed as a good deal, and budget-friendly retailers should keep this in mind when developing marketing materials.
As a caveat, marketers and advertisers need to be mindful when displaying low prices because they don’t want to be viewed as cheap, or potentially become synonymous with low quality.
Brands that want to be perceived as more affluent or luxurious may choose to stick with whole number pricing to remain distanced from any association of low quality. For example, designer Gucci prices its items within the whole number spectrum.
3. Lead with (Relevant) Numbers or Statistics
Forty nine percent of consumers say they would like to receive promotional emails from their favorite brands on a weekly basis, according to Statista.
Did that catch your attention?
Numbers are a powerful tool that marketers and advertisers can turn to, because they can effortlessly grab the attention of readers. Further, companies should consider leveraging listicle-style posts in their corporate blog as part of their marketing strategy. This type of article inherently comes with the promise of being succinct, easy to comprehend and well-organized.
Additionally, the number included in the title should be odd, and psychologists have found that people have the greatest attraction to the number seven. In other words, if it makes sense for you to include seven tips, takeaways, steps, etc. in your copy, we highly encourage it.
Consumer behavior can feel mysterious at times. Understanding what motivates individuals can be tricky. We recommend picking and choosing the marketing psychology “hacks” that make the most sense for your company, brand or product. Lastly, don’t be afraid to try different approaches to determine what resonates best with your customer audience.