It Has More to do with Statistics than People
By Ali Craig
When struggling brands come to me, nine times out of 10 the brand owner has no idea why they are failing. They have done their research, are checking items off their to-do lists and are trying the latest marketing tactics. After 20 years in the branding industry, I can tell you that most brands do not fail from a lack of doing.
One last Facebook post that pushes you from three to four posts a day is not making or breaking your brand. It is not your industry or even your lack of audience that is causing your brand to struggle. The struggle is happening because you built your brand on statistics, not people.
Statistics come in all shapes and sizes. From data mining to ROI to niche and avatar branding approaches; all are based on facts and actions with no thought of the motive. This is one reason why I minimize my media appearances of body language analysis in the political season; because one clip with no context does not tell you the truth. An entire bunch of statistics, habits and likes, out of context, will not tell you the truth either. It is the motive behind the action that is the true driving force.
The other reason why building a brand, launching a product or doing pretty much anything based off statistics is the wrong idea is simply because the information is old. By the time you read the latest research, months, if not years, have passed since the actual moment the data was collected.
Now, this never used to be a massive problem, but we used to use dial-up phones, send letters via snail mail, and update a brand’s message and visuals every four to six years. With the influx of information online and via social media, your brand’s message must evolve both visually and verbally every four to six months to stay up to date with how fast society is shifting as a culture.
Building a brand or launching a new product based off the most recent study will have you constantly chasing your audience because you are building for who they once were, not who they are now or who they are becoming. And no one wants that.
If the beloved statistics and studies are not the way to brand building success, then what is? The answer is simple: It is people.
Yes, the one common element no matter what you sell, even if it is pet products, another human being must say “yes” to you. And though the media may want you to believe that we have massive cultural divides, the truth is people are more alike than different. This is why Neuro Human Branding® is the only smart method to build a brand on.
Though, as people, we like to think that we are these complex, completely unique beings, the truth is that our biology, psychology and social stories make us all scared or amused by similar things. When a brand understands and speaks to these elements, your messaging, be it visual or verbal, is on point because our biology, psychology, and social stories are hardwired into our DNA and subconscious mind.
What does Neuro Human Branding® look like in action? Here is a look:
Is your ideal customer a hunter or a gatherer? Traditionally, a hunter is a man and the gatherer is a female. And though we still have biological tendencies towards this, it is not always the case.
So, what is the deciding factor on if biology will win? Motive.
If your audience is obsessed with being the best, then they are primal while working through their hunter sides. Whereas, if community and acceptance is more their speed, then the gatherer mentality is where their primal, instinctual behavior is coming from.
When you understand such a simple motivation as the hunter or gatherer instinct, you can then begin to craft your message, offer, and price to feed such basic needs.
Psychology and Social Stories
Though technically two distinct categories within Neuro Human Branding®, they both deal with the subconscious minds of our audiences. It is here in the subconscious mind where people make their choices and actions. Yes, human beings are anything but logical.
Within the subconscious mind, there is a seven-second window of where a subconscious thought arises and the time this thought crosses over into the conscious areas of the mind. It is in this seven-second window where all brands want to be. If the relationship and attachment your audience has with your brand is strong enough, the subconscious thought will arise, and they will instantly think of what you do. Yes, your brand will be top of mind for your audience. And, yes, this is where the phrase “top of mind” comes from.
Because if your brand does not pop up within that seven-second window and your audience’s need goes into their conscious mind, this means your audience is in pain. And like you, most people do not act the nicest, appreciate those extra efforts, or truly wish to build a relationship when they are in pain. By building your brand in a way that speaks to the subconscious mind of your audience versus the logical one, you can eliminate the pain, be top of mind and be beloved by your audience.
Brands do not fail because of lack of action. They fail because they take the heart out of the relationship they are creating with their audiences. To truly have a thriving, beloved and profitable brand, you must create a relationship experience with your audience, not a transactional one.
About Ali Craig – Ali Craig is an international consultant, speaker, three-time best-selling author, television host and brand strategist. Having worked with everyone from industry titans to underdogs, Ali has found that her passion lies in helping small brands take action to make large ideas doable and create an influential brand that shines. With 20 years of branding experience, Ali shares her knowledge across international stages, with national media audiences, and on the Apple TV Brandpreneur show, “Fix My Brand With Ali Craig.” Her Neuro Human Branding method weaves science, psychology, design, and human nature into an easy to apply system that any brand can use to grow their audience’s connections, conversions, and community. Ali’s energy and expertise shine through in her monthly articles in EmpiHER Magazine, and guest contributions in the Chicago Tribune, The Denver Post, and The New York Daily News. Ali is a sought-after branding expert and can regularly be seen on television shows across the country, as well as features in the Associated Press, Wall Street Journal, and New York Times.