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Photo by Comfreak, Pixabay

You’re here because you know something. What you know you can’t explain, but you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life – that there’s something wrong with the world. You don’t know what it is, but it’s there, like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad. It is all around us. Even now, in this very room. You can see it when you look out your window or when you turn on your television. You can feel it when you go to work … when you go to church … when you pay your taxes. It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth. …


Photo by visuals, Unsplash
Photo by visuals, Unsplash
Photo by visuals, Unsplash

Since the 2014 Ebola outbreak wasn’t enough of a warning to humanity, Bill Gates got on stage in 2015 to deliver a powerful message. The key takeaway was in the title, glaring at us: The Next Outbreak? We’re Not Ready.

As parts of the world go on lockdown and extroverts realize how their counterparts spend life indoors, the communicable spread of misinformation through social media and the web becomes a matter of life and death. People struggle to differentiate news between noise. …


On fake construction workers, Beyoncé, and neuromarketing

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Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Burly, heavily bearded, and permanently decked out in construction gear, you’d sooner expect to see Omar holding a hammer than an iPhone. And yet, his Instagram is more active than the average high schooler. His pics pop up with stunning frequency: him on a construction site, him drinking coffee, then him back on a construction site again.


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In Kanye’s world, Jesus is king. In the world of seasonal shopping, Black Friday is king. Companies using Black Friday to “officially” kick off the holiday season has bagged more than $6 billion in sales in 2018 alone as 165 million Americans shopped online and in-store-with some going as far as waiting in line in front of stores well before they have digested the turkey during the day of giving thanks.

As our shopping experiences have shifted more from retail to digital, companies design different psychological strategies but still aim for the same goal: to break down your critical thinking to appeal to your impulsive reactions. …


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Fifteen Fall seasons ago, Starbucks blessed our souls with the Pumpkin Spice Latte. For fifteen years, it has also marked the beginning of red, yellow, and orange colors, fall leaves, cozy weather, and America’s oldest holiday: Thanksgiving.

Just like it’s hard to imagine Fall without the sensational PSL, it’s also hard to celebrate Thanksgiving without-wait for it-giving thanks. But if we’re only really thankful for all the food, love, and joy one day of the year, then why is it difficult to experience gratitude every day?

This difficulty persists as it comes head-to-head with a powerful psychological force: Attention habituation. …


Photo by John Noonan, Unsplash
Photo by John Noonan, Unsplash

Credit the Germans for providing the perfect word to explain the joy of Halloween: maskenfreiheit. Maskenfreiheit is the freedom we feel from wearing a mask.

The concept of a mask is profound. A mask can hide the darker side of a person because it can erase one’s responsibility for their actions. Darth Vader comes to mind. A mask can also bring out a more expressive, authentic, and less self-conscious side of a person. Think of Tony Stark, the capitalist turning into the empathetic life-saver Ironman upon wearing the mask.

Halloween is the one day out of the year when we can openly swim in maskenfreiheit. From the parent to the marketer to the student, we can leave our everyday identities at home. Halloween excuses us to wear an entirely new mask, a completely new identity that we don’t own in our daily lives. …


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In Harry Potter, people belong to one of two groups — Wizards (those who can perform magic) and Muggles (people who cannot perform magic). The need to belong to a group or tribe is not unique to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. In fact, Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs ranks the need for belonging higher than self-fulfillment needs.

Whether conscious or subconscious, group affiliations impact our psychology and drive our consumer behavior to polar extremes — from love, all the way to hate.

This phenomenon is often on display in groups of fans. Korean pop (KPop) music fans, in particular, show an impressive array of tribal psychology. Hyperactive tribes, aka fandoms, are pushing KPop to new heights. In 2018, Kpop ranked 6th in the worldwide music market, up 17.9% …


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Winter is coming, but fall is coming first. Our ancestors celebrated the fall equinox in dramatic fashion. None celebrated harder than the Mayans who built a pyramid designed to create a shadow of a snake, which only appears during the equinox. The equinox (or giant snake shadows) marked the arrival of fall.

Centuries later, fall is still a time for celebration. Instead of a slithering serpent, modern humans have honed in on a different marker, the arrival of The Pumpkin Spice Latte. As far as consumer behavior is concerned, it stands as the unofficial start of the fall shopping season. …


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“Stranger Art” by Angelie Censon | Instagram: @echosei

In Back to the Future, Marty McFly didn’t have to imagine Hill Valley Farmlands as Doc described. He could drive the DeLorean back to 1955 to see it himself. The closest thing we have to the DeLorean is our memory. Therein also lies the biggest misconception about memory — we think it is objective like time-traveling to the past. In reality, memory is remarkably inaccurate.

On the one hand, the inaccuracy of memory is frustrating. On the other, its revisionist nature gives rise to one of our most treasured feelings: nostalgia. …


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25 years ago Wu-Tang taught us what C.R.E.A.M. stands for, “Cash Rules Everything Around Me”. Today, it’s Consumerism Rules Everything Around Me. We are all consumers, living in a consumer world, without knowing the psychological impact of consumer behavior. Enter neuromarketing. What is neuromarketing? The study of how the brain is influenced by marketing and consumerism.

On the surface, neuro-marketing combines neuroscience and marketing. Peel back a layer and it goes much further than marketing. Neuromarketing is a study of the brain on brands. For brands, neuromarketing provides a psychological lens to understand consumer behavior. …

About

Prince & Matt

Professors of Neuromarketing, Authors of Blindsight: How Marketing Reshapes Our Brains, Bloggers at PopNeuro.com — A Blog on Consumer Psychology For Consumers

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