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Emotional Advertising: How Brands Use Feelings to Get People to Buy

Informing your audience is important. You want potential buyers to understand what their problem is, and how your products or services can solve that problem. Unfortunately, people don’t generally make purchases based on information alone. It turns out that people are more prone to making emotional purchases than informed purchases. It’s why commercials consist of much more than an explanation of a product’s use. Instead they use emotional advertising to target the viewer. It’s effective, and it’s why connecting with your audience on an emotional level will benefit your marketing strategy. 

The Benefits of Emotional Advertising

Targeting your audience’s emotions through your advertising efforts makes it easier for your audience to connect with your brand on a personal level. Purely informational advertising can be difficult for people to connect with. One of the issues with that kind of advertising is that the audience might remember the information you’ve provided, but not the brand itself.

Connecting to your audience using emotional advertising is important. Whether you’re pulling at their heartstrings or making them laugh, this makes your brand more memorable. Your audience is more likely to trust you if you appeal to their emotions because it makes your brand more relatable. It means that they’re more likely to engage with your brand, resulting in stronger customer loyalty even after you’ve closed the sale.

Not only does emotional advertising make more of an impact on audiences, but it also makes your content more shareable. Nobody is going to share a video or a blog post that is purely informational. However, they will share something they find funny or uplifting. It makes it easier to increase brand awareness.

Read more on Integrating Storybranding With Your B2B Marketing Strategy

Examples of Emotional Advertisingemotions

The following are just a few examples of how different emotions can be used to connect with your audience:

  • Happiness – Making an audience feel happy is a good way to develop brand association. It also makes them more likely to share your content. They will want to share that happiness with their friends and family. Coca-Cola has been running campaigns that make audiences feel happy for decades. From their iconic I’d like to buy the world a coke to their “open happiness” tagline, Coca Cola is a great example of this type of marketing.
  • Pride – Appealing to your audience’s sense of pride makes them feel good about themselves as well as about your brand. A great recent example is of Nike’s Kaepernick ad, the tagline of which read “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”
  • Fear – You don’t always have to appeal to the emotions people like. In some cases, fear can be a very effective emotion, especially if you’re trying to drive audiences to take immediate action. The WWF created a campaign using fear to drive the importance of stopping climate change. The ad read “Stop Climate Change Before It Changes You” and showed a man with the head of a fish–a terrifying image.
  • Anger – Anger is an emotion that brands can use to get their audience to side with them over an issue. You’ll notice many political campaigns focus on generating anger for emotional advertising. They highlight aspects of their opponents their audience should be angry about, thereby aligning their audience with them.

As you can see, emotional advertising can be extremely effective when done right. This means using attraction marketing and story branding ensures your audience will emotionally connect with your brand.

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Dan Gartlan
Dan Gartlan helps companies of all kinds drive their business initiatives and achieve their goals with strategic marketing programs that deliver results. As President of Stevens & Tate Marketing, he has over 20 years experience across various industries, and continues to share his expertise to build brands nationwide.