3 Elements To Cultivate Emotional Connection With Consumers
How do you build emotional connections with your audience?
Marketing advisor and bestselling author Tim Ash suggests the answer lies in the psychological theory of attachment: “If you want to establish an emotional connection with your visitors, you must earn their trust, ensure that you are helping to fulfill an important need, and provide stress-free, enjoyable experiences.”
What’s interesting to note is that trustworthiness, responsiveness to consumer needs and consistency are three ways discount promotions fail, leading consumers to detach from your brand instead.
“If you want to establish an emotional connection with your visitors, you must earn their trust, ensure that you are helping to fulfill an important need, and provide stress-free, enjoyable experiences.”
1. Consumers prioritize trust – and so should you
When asked what ‘connecting’ means to them, 66% of consumers questioned by Sprout Social equated feeling connected with trust. Separate research by Deloitte places even more importance on trustworthiness, with 83% considering it the most important brand trait.
“Prioritize mutual trust and respect to create genuine connections – and focus on the experience, not the transaction,” advises Rob Danna, SVP of Sales and Marketing at engagement solutions provider ITA Group. Ditching transactional discount promotions in favour of creating emotionally engaging experiences for customers is the way to go.
2. Respond to consumers’ needs to prove you ‘get’ them
Responding to consumers’ motivations and needs comes a close second in creating an emotional connection, with 51% of consumers saying their relationship with a brand starts when they feel the brand understands them and their desires, and 53% describing feeling connected to a brand when its values align with their own. “People want to evolve with a brand whose products and services help give their business or life meaning,” says Danna. Harvard Business Review conducted research across hundreds of brands in dozens of categories to uncover 10 high-impact emotional motivators that drive consumer behaviour. They are:
In terms of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, today’s consumers put more emphasis on high-level psychological and self-fulfillment needs like belonging and love, esteem and self-actualization.
Every interaction your brand has with consumers – including promotional campaigns – is an opportunity to fulfill these needs and move consumers towards their goals, which helps you connect to consumers on an emotional level.
3. Be consistent, or be left behind
“Consistency breeds credibility in a big way,” says Danna. Why? Because your brand is a statement of your integrity – that is, “the state of being whole and undivided,” “the condition of being unified or sound in construction” – as CEO of EmailAnalytics Jayson DeMers explains.
Everything your brand does – from the products you create, to the service you offer, to your pricing, to your marketing and promotional campaigns – is a statement about your brand that can either support your mission and values or contradict and undermine it. Promotional campaigns that are consistent with your brand help you build emotional connections, making them better for your business in the long run.
Want to know why emotion sells? Download our free e-book to find out more.