As a good friend of mine says, emotions almost always override intellect.
Perhaps no one would agree with him more than the new breed of marketers who are applying the methods of the neurology lab to the issues of the advertising world.
Calling themselves “neuromarketers,” this new… well, brand of marketers is intrigued with marketing as a practical application of psychology. They answer questions like, “If Pepsi tastes better than Coke, why is Coke the homecoming queen?”
And they dis other traditional marketing research techniques—like consumer focus groups—as a colossal waste of time.
What’s more, they find specific (read: measurable) activity in the brain to back up their assertions. Like: Coke rules because it has done a better job with its branding. And: focus groups are useless because participants tell you what they think you want to hear, not what they really think.
All of this is measured in an area of the brain called the medial prefrontal cortex, which scientists say governs high-level cognitive thinking, with a precision that some marketers find useful.
Read more about the concept of neuromarketing in Clive Thompson’s recent New York Times article, “There's a Sucker Born in Every Medial Prefrontal Cortex.” And let me know your thoughts.
As always, your feedback is both welcome and encouraged.
Until next week,