Understanding Brand Psychology

When it comes to branding, understanding the psychology behind customer behavior is key. What makes a brand desirable, memorable and distinctive?

Why Do Brands Fail?

There are many reasons why brands fail, but one of the most common is the lack of emotional connection. Businesses need to connect with their audience emotionally to be truly successful. Emotional connections are what keep customers coming back - they create loyalty and trust. Brands that lack an emotional connection with their customers are quickly forgotten.

Think about the last time you made a purchase based solely on logic. Was it for something you needed or wanted? Probably neither. More likely, it was because you were feeling something – happy, sad, frustrated, etc. – and that emotion led you to make the purchase.

So why do so many brands focus only on the functional goal of their customer? Because it's easy to get caught up in what you're selling and lose sight of the customer's needs and wants.

To create an emotional connection with your customers, you need to understand them on a deeper level. What are their hopes, fears, and dreams? What motivates them? Once you know the answers to these questions, you can start creating content that resonates with them on an emotional level. And, when you connect with your customers emotionally, they're more likely to remember your brand and continue doing business with you. Emotional connection is what separates successful brands from unsuccessful ones.

What Consumers Really Want?

What do people want from brands? It's a question that has been asked since the dawn of marketing, and one that continues to be relevant today.   People want brands that reflect their values and aspirations. We want brands that make us feel good about ourselves, that we can trust, and that we can rely on. In a world where we are constantly bombarded with choices, we want brands that simplify our lives and make us feel confident in our decisions.   Here are the top three needs that contribute to the overall satisfaction that consumers experience with the brand:

Authenticity and transparency

In today's marketplace, consumers are bombarded with choices, and it can be difficult to know who to trust. People want brands to be authentic and transparent so they can feel confident about their purchase decisions. They want to know that the brand is being honest with them and that they can trust the brand. In order to build trust, brands need to be clear about their values and what they stand for. They also need to be consistent in their messaging and actions. When people feel like they can trust a brand, they are more likely to continue doing business with that brand.

People want brands to provide value.

Brands that provide value - whether it's through discounts, loyalty rewards, or simply by offering a high-quality product - are more likely to win over customers in the long run. In an age of instant gratification, people want to know that their time is going towards something that will make their life easier, not just add another item to their already overflowing closet. So when it comes to making a purchase, people will always gravitate towards brands that provide them with the most value.

Consumers need a sense of belonging

In order to succeed, brands need to understand that consumers need to feel a sense of belonging. We are social animals, and we crave connection. When we feel like we belong to a particular group or community, it gives us a sense of comfort and security. We feel like we fit in and are accepted for who we are. This feeling of belonging can be extremely powerful, and it can influence our purchasing decisions. Brands that tap into this need can create a loyal customer base that will continue to purchase their products and recommend them to others. So if you want your brand to succeed, make sure you understand the importance of creating a sense of belonging for your consumers.

Understanding the Psycho-Dynamic Relationships with the Consumers

In order to be successful, brands need to understand the psycho-dynamic relationships between themselves and their target consumers.   There are four key psychographic segments that brands need to be aware of:

  • Sensation Seekers: These individuals are driven by a need for excitement and novelty. They are attracted to brands that offer an element of risk or adventure.

  • Socializers: These individuals place a high value on personal interactions and relationships. They are drawn to brands that facilitate socializing and enable them to connect with others.

  • Self-Expressionists: These individuals seek out opportunities to express their individuality and creativity. They are attracted to brands that allow them to express their unique style and personality.

  • Traditionalists: These individuals prioritize stability and security. They are drawn to brands that offer a sense of tradition and heritage.

By understanding the different psychographic segments, brands can develop marketing strategies that are tailored to the specific needs and desires of their target consumers. By doing so, they will be able to build more meaningful and lasting relationships with their customers.   Only after understanding the psycho-dynamic relationships with the consumers, brands can build compelling brand stories. The story should be something that the consumers can relate to and should evoke some kind of emotion. It should also be something that is believable and credible.

The Psychological Power of A Dramatic Brand Story

A well-defined brand story gives customers a reason to choose your company over the competition. It also helps employees to stay focused on the company’s goals and values. If you want to create an irresistible brand story, there are certain elements you need to include. Here's a quick overview of what your brand story should include:     Protagonist (the hero of your story): In every brand story, there is always a protagonist. The brand itself should not be the hero - instead, the focus should be on the person who embodies the brand's values and mission. Only by making the human protagonist the focus of the story can brands hope to create an emotional connection with their audience.   The protagonist is the one who embodies the values and aspirations of the brand. They are the ones who drive the story forward and strive to achieve the brand's goals.   Inciting Incident (a small event that disrupts protagonist's world): A good brand story needs an inciting incident to get things started. This is a small event that disrupts the protagonist's world in some way, setting them on a journey towards a new goal. The best Inciting Incidents are those that are unexpected and set the stage for an exciting journey ahead. They should also be relevant to the brand's overall message and values.   Motivation (why the protagonist is taking action): One of the most important elements of that story is motivation. Why is the protagonist taking action? What drives them to keep going, even in the face of adversity? Motivation is what gives a story purpose and direction, and it's essential for connecting with customers on an emotional level. When crafting a brand story, be sure to give your protagonist a clear motivation. What are they fighting for? What do they want to achieve? Answering these questions will help you create a story that resonates with your audience and inspires them to take action.   Conflict (the main obstacle the protagonist must overcome): Every good story has conflict. Without it, there is no story. Conflict is the main obstacle that the protagonist must overcome in order to achieve their goal. A brand story is no different. In order to create a compelling brand story, you need to identify the conflict that your protagonist will face. What is standing in their way? What are the challenges they must overcome? By creating a brand story with conflict, you can help your audience to understand your brand's purpose and connect with your values on a deeper level.   Climax (the most suspenseful moment in your story): Every good story has a climax- the moment when the tension reaches its peak and the protagonist must triumph over adversity. In many ways, this is also the case for brand stories. The climax is the most suspenseful moment in your story, and it's what will leave your audience on the edge of their seats. To create a truly gripping climax, you need to carefully build up the tension throughout your story, introducing obstacles and challenges for your protagonist to overcome. Then, in the climax, you need to bring all of these elements together in a final showdown that will have your audience cheering for your brand. If done well, the climax of your story will be one of the most unforgettable moments in your customer's journey with your brand.   Resolution (how the conflict is resolved and what lessons are learned): One of the key elements that help to make a story enjoyable and memorable is resolution. This is the part of the story where the conflict is resolved and the protagonist (whether that's an individual or a company) learns some valuable lessons. A well-resolved story can leave readers feeling satisfied and even inspired, making them more likely to remember the brand in question favorably. However, don't try to sell your customers on the idea that your brand is a magic wand that will solve all their problems. Instead, show them how your brand can be a part of their journey to success. By adopting this perspective, you'll create brand stories that are both relatable and inspirational – and that will leave a lasting impression on your customers.

Final Word

Brand psychology is the study of how people interact with brands. When you understand how and why people react to certain branding strategies, you can create a marketing plan that resonates with your target audience.