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Understanding Emotions in Marketing

Updated: Jan 3, 2020

Written by: Evan Goodfellow

emotions-in-marketing Insightrix-communities market-research corporate-research consumer-research customer-insights mroc online-communities insightrix-online-community-software

Grocery Shopping on an Empty Stomach

If you have ever wondered the importance emotions can have on purchases, write out a grocery list the night before, the following day skip lunch and then head to the grocery store around 5 p.m. and see if your grocery cart is filled with unusual items that were not on the list. A large problem companies have is that they know emotions are important in the lives of their customers but they don’t know how to identify them, engage them and link them to results. We at Insightrix Communities believe that Market Research Online Communities can play an ongoing role in understanding customers emotional motivators and help you link them to results.

Connecting Customers to Their Motivations and Desires

In an article for Harvard Business Review entitled, The New Science of Customer Emotions, the authors Scott Magids, Alan Zorfas, and Daniel Leemon set about to solve this problem by realizing that their was no standard lexicon of emotions, so they set out to create one, and created a list of over 300 emotional motivators. They write that, “customers to be emotionally connected with a brand when it aligns with their motivations and helps them fulfill deep, often unconscious, desires. Important emotional motivators include desires to “stand out from the crowd,” “have confidence in the future,” and “enjoy a sense of well-being,” to name just a few. We believe that understanding these emotional motivators is essential for companies to fully connect with their customers.

Understanding the Why?

Big data is plentiful and cheap these days. We believe that combining it with qualitative research done in Market Research Online Communities can be a great way to gather deeper insights into the “Why?” and into the further question of how to take action based on the “Why?” One challenge is that emotions and reasoning are often very contradictory. The reason people say they purchase a brand and the actual reason are often different. The authors write that while, “brands may be liked or trusted, most fail to align themselves with the emotions that drive their customers’ most profitable behaviours.”  Some companies such as luxury sports cars might have an easier time making connections, but every company needs to strive towards that connection. A household cleaner like Febreze can connect with strong emotions attached to cleanliness. The goal is seeking out those emotions and connecting your product to them.

Big Data Plus

The author lays out his process for doing so, first apply big data analytics to customer- data sets and identify key emotional motivators for the brands most valuable customers. Then look at survey results to find out which motivators generate the most profitable customer behaviour within that category. The authors say then, “quantify the current and potential value of motivators for a given brand and help identify strategies to leverage them.” The article goes on to explain that each level of connection increases customer spending.

Engagement is Key

The importance of understanding behaviors through quantitative research is important, but to maximize profits you need to understand why the customer is doing what they are doing. This reasoning is often not understood by the customer themselves that is why it is important to engage the customers in such procedures as outlined above. As well, we think that using a qualitative online research community to engage customers on a variety of topics can help show motivations and connection levels in your customers.

If you would like to find out more about how Market Research Online Communities can help you, please feel free to contact us.

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