Tapping into the Emotional Aspect to Build and Promote a Business Brand
Since branding is an intangible aspect of a business, there are different ways to approach it, and there is no universal method to getting it right. There is no clear cut path for shaping a brand.
Partly this is due to the diffuse definition of what a brand really is, as there are several different examples that make up a brand. One common thing that can be observed across successful brands is the emotional connection these can create with their audience.
The Brand Experience and Emotion
Brands that have explored and tapped into humans’ emotion pool have much stronger brand images. Finding the perfect connection with human emotions is a rather inexact science, but is crucial to winning the trust of consumers.
When talking about branding and lifestyle the first thing to come to mind are consumer brands, but studies show that business brands can have a similar impact by appealing to human emotions. This is achievable by developing your brand strategy around the emotional benefits of using the product or service.
For many consumer products, the emotional component has become apparent. For B2B products and services it’s not always obvious. A great way to explore the emotional benefits of your product is to consider the features and benefits you can provide.
A feature is an integral part of a product or service. For example, a car’s features may include an upgraded stereo system. A benefit is a positive effect a certain feature might create for the buyer or user.
Afterwards, identify whether a benefit is functional or emotional:
- Functional Benefit: This benefit is directly related to the functionality of the feature. An upgraded stereo provides higher-quality sound.
- Emotional Benefit: This benefits the user’s quality of life, e.g. an upgraded stereo may enhance the user’s driving experience.
A feature will generally offer several benefits, and sometimes the emotional benefits are tougher to spot. However, for every functional benefit you identify, think about the emotional impact on a potential buyer. List the features of your product along with their benefits, and assign the benefit type for each.
In the next step determine how important each feature and benefit is to your customers. There are three fundamental levels:
- Expected: A customer won’t buy the product without this feature or benefit, making this type of feature mandatory in every product you offer.
- Adds Value: This type of feature will add value but most customers won’t purchase it based on this feature. This can help differentiate your product from your competitors’.
- Will Buy: A highly valuable feature to customers that will convince them to buy the product.
For every feature and benefit type, pick a single level of importance. This way you can identify what features and benefits you should leverage in your promotional efforts. Moreover, you can pick and combine the right features to build a consistent and appealing brand image in the long run.