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Tapping Customer Emotions Through Engagement, Empathy and Ease

The subject of emotional intelligence in the selling and buying process has been examined in many research studies and books. Gerald Zaltman, in his new book, How Customers Think: Essential Insights into the Mind of the Market, says that 95 percent of our purchase decision-making takes place in the subconscious mind. 

And the Covid-19 pandemic heavily underscored - across the promo industry and more broadly - the importance of emotional intelligence in marketing. Customers in 2023 expect engagement, empathy and ease throughout the buying process.

  • Let’s start with engagement. Knowing that emotions play a significant role in customers’ decisions to buy, it’s critical to create a product offering that appeals to their passions, evokes a positive emotional response, and drives engagement with your brand, now and in the future. Leverage your packaging, marketing and product features to create opportunities for customers to engage and feel welcomed and included.
  • Empathy is an essential ingredient in modern marketing. Yes, data is invaluable in creating personalized marketing experiences, but empathy is king in terms of delivering customer-centric communications and building authentic relationships. A key component of emotional intelligence, empathy allows you to walk in your customers’ shoes and see through their eyes. Customers aren’t bits of data – they are human beings with real emotions, desires, and needs. When we treat them as such, they feel it. And when they feel respected and valued, they are more inclined to buy. 
  • An easy user experience is an absolute must in today’s competitive landscape. If you aren’t making it easy for prospects to engage with your brand and buy your products, nothing else really matters. Clarity and simplicity at every stage of the customer journey is vital to engaging them and driving repeat and referral business. Non-responsive websites, cumbersome return processes, complex automated phone trees – obstacles like these are surefire ways to ignite the wrong emotions and send your prospects straight to a competitor. 

As humans, we are driven by our feelings. Product features are important – but they’re table stakes. Selling a feeling, an outcome, an emotional response – that’s what captures the hearts and minds of prospects and customers. This is especially true in promo, where customers are looking for advice and expertise to create positive feelings, meaningful experiences and lasting brand impressions.