Adapt Your Brand to Complement Consumer Behavior
At Evolve, we emphasize the importance of knowing whom you are marketing to. The online realm is much different from the physical world; it’s easy for customers to remain anonymous. Without a definite understanding of your consumers’ behavior, it may be difficult for your brand to flourish online.
We’re Emotional Beings
One important factor to note is that consumers make emotional purchases. Before social media, we relied heavily on personal experiences to drive us toward purchases of specific brands. For instance, I drink Diet Coke, not because it’s the only sugar-free beverage out there. God knows it’s not. But I drink it because my mom drank it (and still does). It’s familiar. It’s what I know. And for me, it’s an emotional experience. Bending back the tab on a cold can of Coca-Cola creates a recognizable _**psssffft**_, indicating that I am inches away from fizzy refreshment.
Advertisers rely on emotion as well. If they can create a 30-second spot with a punch of humor, a heartfelt storyline, or a sense of security, perhaps you, the consumer, will be swayed. Maybe even swayed from a brand you have used loyally throughout your lifetime.
While advertising tactics are still very influential, there’s now a new way to play the game. This, of course, is social media. Marketing is now more personal than ever, as brands have a chance to interact, engage, and converse with their consumers. You may not have the brand strength and history of Coke. In fact, your product might have debuted last year. But you can still compete and succeed if you take the opportunity to build relationships and trust with consumers. But you have to use social media the right way. If someone were in need of running shoes, he wouldn’t use Twitter as a tool for purchasing a pair (unless he was asking opinions of others). He would turn to Google and search “running shoes.” But if your brand has a voice on Twitter, along with plenty of Retweets and a loyal following, there’s a good chance that someone in the market for a sweet new pair of kicks will not Google “running shoes,” but “Brand X running shoes.”
Catching on? _**It’s about relationships now.**_ Use platforms like Twitter and Facebook to show your personality and interest in others- and reap the benefits through an increase in conversions and enriched connections.
What Lies Beneath…
Moving on, the non-verbal components of a brand, such as the logo, typography, graphics, color palette, etc. have a huge impact on your brand’s ability to tap into the consumer’s unconscious mind. Most people aren’t aware of the impressive choices you’ve made on your brand’s site: clean lines, appropriate typography, and impressive phrasing. In fact, unless they’re graphic designers or writers, and have been trained to notice those details, those factors are _seemingly_ looked over, unnoticed, ignored.
However, the unconscious mind is a powerful empire. I’m not going to go all Freud on you and teach a course on psychoanalysis, but I’m sure you understand that details matter. And although people might not consciously recognize good content or well-designed pages, _they will immediately spot a sloppy website._
Consistency is Crucial
Furthermore, it is essential that your brand carry a solid, consistent brand message. If each person on your team knows the company’s core mission and values, then the chances of conveying that to the public are greatly amplified. A strong, clear message is essential in order to successfully articulate your company’s message to users.
Enhance the Experience
Finally, ensure that your company is providing a valuable experience for your consumers. That ties in to the emotional factor; we buy products for the experience. If your website is easy to navigate through, or if the Calls to Action are evident, and if the entire experience is welcoming and beneficial, then people are likely to return. And if the site is a sty of frustration, your visitors won’t return, regardless of how low your prices are.
There you have it- and hopefully you’re able to take something from this post. The Marketing world is changing- ahem, evolving- and although it may feel like you’re playing an endless game of Catch-Up, it all pays off if you keep moving forward.
**_Written by Emily Wisely. Find her on Twitter at_** [@em_wisely](http://twitter.com/#!/em_wisely “”)