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So Many Paths to My Heart

August 13, 2008  

More than 50 years of consumer research suggests that when dealing with product types that consumers really care about, there are at least 5 ways marketers can encourage customers to develop favorable attitudes toward their specific products. Whether you appeal to their imaginations, their values, their feelings, their analytical minds, or their need to belong, these tried-and-true tactics should serve you well. They've made the difference for a range of marketers over the years. Post this list next to your computer:

Five Sure-Fire Paths to Your Customer's Heart

  1. Offering a direct or imagined experience with the brand. Think product samples, or ads for "experiential" products like fantastic vacations.
  2. Using an analogy to something familiar. For example, you might talk about a new digital camera by saying it has the precision of a surgeon and the functionality of a Swiss watch.
  3. Relating the product to values consumers hold dear. The right phrase goes straight to the ol' ticker. ("Nothing comes closer to home." "A diamond is forever.")
  4. Using an analytical process, where you discuss the great features and benefits of your brand. (Think descriptions of how antacids work, with "anatomical" charts.)
  5. Linking your brand with a social identity. Play up a group of people consumers want to be like, or feel they are like already. ("Smart shoppers choose…").

The Po!nt: There are so many ways to connect. Try each of these tried-and-true approaches to see which one works best for you.

Source: " A Multiple Pathway Anchoring and Adjustment (MPAA) Model of Attitude Generation and Recruitment, Joel B. Cohen, Americus Reed II. Journal of Consumer Research, 2006.

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