The Hidden Reasons Why We Do What We Do

Self - By: Jim Jubelirer
Business Coaching Article | Ten Principles of Leadership


Neuroscience is the study of the brain and how it controls our behavior. Neuromarketing is the application of neuroscientific research to marketing and advertising messages. Neuromarketing uses brainwave, eye-tracking and skin conductance measurements to create a deeper insight into shopper behavior.

Companies like Coke and GM spend billions of dollars each year to market their products and they want to know whether their ads are effective. Nielsen, the audience measurement firm, combines neuroscience with experience in consumer research and purchase decision-making. According to Nielsen, up to 90% of purchasing decisions are made sub-consciously. Often, the customer then spends time and energy finding ways to rationalize or explain their purchase. These post-purchase rationalizations may not be very accurate if the customer is unaware of their own sub-conscious drivers.

Our brain processes 11 billion bits of sensory information per second, yet we consciously remember only 100 bits of information per second. We have developed two important coping skills to process this information gap:

• We spend less time trying to understand something if it is complicated or difficult, and

• We focus on novelty, looking for the degree to whether something is new and/or memorable.

Conduct a review of your business practices and products. Are they easy to understand, easy to use? Are customers leaving because they have a hard time doing business with you? Do you have tools to track the reasons why people stop doing business with you? Now, consider novelty: what are you offering that is new or different? What are you doing to stand out from your competitors? Are you making an extra effort to reward long-term, loyalty customers with premium offers and exclusive promotions?
If you want to grow your business, consider these two neuromarketing insights.

• Curves attract and sharp edges repel. Think of the original glass Coke bottle (curvy, right?) Grocery stores are making the end-cap displays (the shelves at the end of each aisle – usually used for promotional or high-volume items) more rounded.

• Multi-sensory experiences stimulate multiple areas of the brain. Consider the use of sound, sight, and smell in your store or personal interactions. Would your employees look better in uniforms or wearing branded logo shirts? Does your workplace project the professional image you want to attract your target customers?