Emotional Marketing

6 Emotional Marketing Tips to Drive Business Growth

By: Frank DePino | May 22, 2024

Emotional marketing touches on a consumer’s feelings, including their aspirations and needs. This can drive purchasing decisions, as emotions are powerful.

Once you connect with a consumer emotionally, you might be likelier to close a deal. What are the top tips for emotional marketing?

Here are some can’t-miss emotions-based marketing tips:

  • Know your audience
  • Tell a compelling story
  • Choose the right colors
  • Embrace good visuals
  • Build a strong community

Today’s guide to emotional marketing will delve further into what this form of marketing entails, how it differs from rational marketing and its benefits. We’ll also expound further on the tips above so you can harness the power of emotional appeal marketing!

What Is Emotional Marketing?

The average person is hugely driven by emotion. A Moz article reports that content eliciting anger in viewers has a nearly 40-percent chance of going viral.

Emotional marketing, sometimes also referred to as emotional branding, uses human emotions as the basis of a marketing and advertising campaign.

The campaign taps into one emotion (be that anger, as mentioned above, or scarcity or happiness). In doing so, the campaign should inspire a strong reaction in a consumer, such as the urge to share content that makes one angry.

Ultimately, emotional marketing aims to establish positive associations between brand and consumer, as these associations drive long-term loyalty.

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Rational vs. Emotional Marketing

The opposite of emotional appeal marketing is rational marketing. This form of marketing taps into someone’s rational approach, aka their logical thinking side.

To present a product or service as beneficial, a rational marketing campaign will focus on statistics, quotes, data, and benefits.

The goal of the campaign is to prove how much a product or service will benefit a consumer or how much the consumer needs it but without emotional appeal.

The preference for rational vs. emotional marketing varies across the world. In some cultures, where reserving emotions is the norm, you’re more likely to see rational campaigns. In cultures where freedom of emotion is widely embraced, the opposite type of campaigns proliferate.

It’s hard to say whether emotions-based or rational marketing usurps the other, as both have their place.

However, Neuroscience Marketing found that emotional marketing ads performed at a rate of 31 percent versus 16 percent for rational ads.

The emotional marketing campaign has brought successful results: the CEO signs a new important commercial

The Benefits of Emotional Marketing

Next, let’s delve into the benefits of emotion-based marketing, including how it can help your business grow to new heights.

Improves Brand Message Retention

Consumers are inundated with advertisements, with career resource Zippia projecting that the average person sees 4,000 to 10,000 ads a day. What makes a consumer remember a particular ad?

Emotional marketing can!

Marketing emotional triggers often involves telling a story. At the end of the day, it’s that story and the methods you use to tell it that consumers most remember.

Humanizes Your Company

The line between consumers and companies has blurred as today’s consumers demand more transparency from the businesses they hand over their hard-earned money to.

While you can show behind-the-scenes glimpses into your company in your newsletter and social media posts, emotion-driven marketing is another way to increase that transparency.

You’ll establish that there’s a human element to what you do, and consumers instantly connect with a good human element.

Increase Customer Loyalty

As we discussed in the section above, using emotions in marketing can create positive associations between your brand and the consumer.

When a consumer feels positively about your brand or even nostalgic, they’re going to be immensely loyal to you.

Emotional Appeals to Use in Marketing

According to Frontiers for Young Minds, the average human can feel 25 unique emotion categories. Here’s a full list that you can utilize in your next marketing campaign.

  • Surprise
  • Satisfaction
  • Sadness
  • Relief
  • Nostalgia
  • Joy
  • Interest
  • Horror
  • Fear
  • Excitement
  • Entrancement
  • Empathetic pain
  • Disgust
  • Craving
  • Confusion
  • Calmness
  • Boredom
  • Awkwardness
  • Awe
  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Amusement
  • Appreciation of beauty
  • Adoration
  • Admiration
The marketing manager is giving some advice to her employe in order to boost the emotional marketing of the company.

Emotional Marketing Tips and Strategies

If you’re ready to begin planning your first emotion-driven marketing campaign, these strategies and tips will help you do so.

Know Your Audience

You can’t possibly appeal to the emotions of your audience without intrinsically understanding who comprises that audience.

If you have yet to segment your leads into niched groups, that’s your first order of business. As you create audience segments, identify the pain points of each group. It may help if you make a customer avatar, an amalgamation of the traits of that group.

Once you understand your audience’s pain points, it becomes easier to build a campaign that addresses those pain points.

Tell a Story

Storytelling is a major strategy for connecting with your audience emotionally. You can frame a problem and how you solved it through a story to engage your audience in the narrative and have them eagerly waiting for more.

The Sound

What kind of sound does your story embody? In other words, what tone do you choose?

You should look to your brand to motivate your tone, as you don’t want to deviate from the tone you’ve already established. That said, you can slightly pivot in tone depending on your audience.

For example, the way you speak to newer versus established customers might lead to a slight tonal shift.

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Inspire

You can also use emotional marketing to inspire action, such as through positive storytelling. The goal is to get the reader to emulate actions you took to solve a specific problem. This can inspire further positive action!

Leverage the Power of Words

You’ll recall that it’s the storytelling element of emotional marketing that hooks people in.

Every brand has a story worth telling, but how you frame it is the difference between resonating with your audience or falling flat.

To that end, using the right words is everything. For example, in the luxury sphere, you’d incorporate words such as exclusive, elegant, classic, tailor-made, heritage, and timeless into your prose.

These visceral words make an impact, especially when interwoven into a brand story.

Another subset of words to consider is known as power words. These words can invoke emotion.

For instance, if you want to introduce happy feelings, you might use words like heartwarming, profound, or inspiring. To invoke feelings of sadness, try power words like heartbreaking, crushing, or alarming.

Choose the Right Colors

Colors sure are fascinating, as they can have a profound emotional effect on us. Here’s an overview of the emotions and traits associated with popular colors.

  • Blue: Truth, faith, intelligence, confidence, wisdom, loyalty, and stability
  • Purple: Ambition, luxury, nobility, and power
  • Green: Fertility, freshness, harmony, and growth
  • Yellow: Energy, intellect, happiness, and joy
  • Orange: Happiness, vitality, and energy
  • White: Purity, faith, safety, innocence, and goodness
  • Black: Mystery, evil, formality, elegance, and power
  • Red: Love, desire, passion, determination, power, strength, danger, and energy

Depending on the colors you select for your emotional marketing campaign, you can amp up your audience with red or orange, calm them with green or white, or appeal to their mysterious side with black.

Before you confirm the usage of any colors in your branding and advertising, split-test to determine which colors will generate the desired emotional response.

Using the right visuals in marketing, such as high-quality images, videos, or graphics, can capture attention, convey emotions, and enhance the overall message of the brand.

Use the Right Visuals

How do you use the colors you selected? With visual marketing, of course.

As we discussed in our post on visual marketing, visual marketing embraces various media formats in campaigns.

Some examples of visual marketing include before and after images, visual quotes, interactive timelines, screenshots, presentations, infographics, videos, memes, gifs, and still images.

Visual marketing gives you a backdrop for incorporating colors but more so than that, it helps cement your branding with memorable visual elements.

Build a Community

To leverage a sense of belonging to a group, building a community is another emotional marketing tip to consider.

Use inclusive language when promoting your products or services. Start an initiative that gives back, and make it clear how when a consumer purchases one of your products or services that they’re participating in that initiative.

This fosters a sense of togetherness that unifies your customers. You’re also tapping into a sense of FOMO, also known as the fear of missing out.

Consumers who have yet to buy anything from you will become curious, so they’ll jump on the bandwagon, then more consumers will jump on the bandwagon, creating a positive snowball effect.

Emotional Marketing Examples

To see some marketing emotional triggers in action, we compiled examples of real marketing campaigns that have performed incredibly well.

Apple

Tech brand Apple has mastered the art of emotional marketing campaigns. Theirs frequently tap into four primary emotions: love, connection, surprise, and delight.

Tech brand Apple has mastered the art of emotional marketing campaigns. Theirs frequently tap into four primary emotions: love, connection, surprise, and delight.

Apple does this through more than introducing the latest iPhone or iPad but when designing its products and respective user interfaces. Strengthening those four emotions is even a part of the company’s customer support mission.

As one of the biggest brands on the planet, Apple is clearly doing something right with its emotional branding appeals.

Nike

Nike already has the insanely catchy “just do it” tagline, but the company has not rested on its laurels one iota. Instead, Nike uses emotional marketing to further its branding message.

In its series of “Find Your Greatness” ads, you wouldn’t even guess by watching them that these are Nike commercials. The ads don’t focus on Nike shoes or Nike exercise gear.

Instead, it’s all about storytelling. These ads focus on everyday heroes who could be any one of us and the challenges these incredible people face. Then, at the end, the ad connects the feel-good triumph of the message with the Nike name and brand.

You can watch a collection of Nike’s “Find Your Greatness” ads below.

Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola exists in a heavily competitive sphere and has to thrive in an era where everyone knows they shouldn’t consume soft drinks. It’s not like Coke can fall back on how tasty their soft drinks are forever, so the brand tried a different, more emotional approach.

In the “Share a Coke – Share a Feeling” campaign, Coke cans featured printed emojis such as kiss, wink, love, or happy. All the emotions were positive, as the goal was to share Coke with others to introduce some happiness into their day.

B2B Emotional Marketing

What if you don’t market to consumers but to other businesses as a B2B company? You can still use marketing emotional triggers to close more deals and make the sale.

You have to remember that companies are comprised of people, and those people have real lives, problems, and emotions. If you can tap into those pain points and position your products or services as a viable solution, you can take your B2B partnerships to a new level.

So how should you use emotional marketing to appeal to a B2B audience? Here are some triggers to focus on.

A web agency is working on an emotional marketing campaign for its customer.

Business Growth

Every company wants to experience more business growth no matter its size. If your products and services can drive growth for your business partners, what kinds of emotions can you attach to a marketing campaign to prove that?

Remember that you don’t want to slip too far into rational marketing with figures and data when focusing on business growth.

Time Savings

We all only have 24 hours a day, so we have to make the most of the time granted to us each day. That’s easier said than done at times! If your business partners feel tight for time, you can appeal to their stresses and position your time-saving product or service at the forefront.

Business Losses

Here’s a very powerful emotional trigger to use if you wish: the fear of business loss.

Although fluctuations in business are inevitable, backsliding into a downward pattern can keep any business owner awake at night. By connecting with that fear with your emotional marketing, you can likely close the deal.

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Conclusion

Emotional marketing is a form of advertising and marketing that uses the power of emotions to create meaningful brand connections, bolster customer loyalty, and increase sales and conversions.

You wield a major power by tapping into emotions, so it’s important to use it wisely. If your marketing campaign needs a boost, give the pros at Mediaboom a call.

We can help you create a new campaign, revitalize existing campaigns, and understand more of the metrics that drive success.

By: Frank DePino

Frank DePino is Principal and Founder of Mediaboom. Since 2002, Frank has led Mediaboom’s award-winning staff of creative and technical professionals, building the most effective marketing and advertising solutions for its clients.

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