As a B2B marketer I’ve been intrigued by neuromarketing off late. The more I learn and explore this niche, the more excited I feel with my “aaahaa” and “so thats why!! ” moments of learning. While there is tons of research to scour and devour when it comes to applying neuromarketing insights into B2C, B2B is a less covered topic.
Hence sharing our learning and insights of how we implement insights from neuromarketing at Alore. ( As an end to end sales and marketing platforms SaaS business — we are B2B ! )
Understanding “What is Neuromarketing?”
Neuromarketing is the study of how consumers make purchasing decisions in their conscious and sub-conscious mind.
According to leading neuroscientists, 95% of all thoughts, emotions, and learning occur before we are ever aware of it. Yet, most marketing efforts forgo the vast subconscious and instead target the rational, conscious mind. ( Source: Brainfluence)
So if we B2B marketers want to beat the competition, we need to stop selling to just 5 percent of the customer’s brain!
Why B2B marketers must be looking at neuromarketing:
- It helps in better alignment between marketers and end customers
- Helps in understanding customer biases and overcoming them
- Helps create effective marketing strategies and therefore better marketing ROI
- Neuromarketing has applications in product design, enhancing promotions and advertising, pricing, store design and improving the customer experience as a whole (NMSBA).
How does neuromarketing work:
Okay without sounding too technical, here’s how it works. There are two methods marketers use to track brain activity to visual cues and external stimuli
a) Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) — a powerful magnet tracks the human brain and its pleasure center. (More expensive but better data. Subjects cannot move)
b) Electroencephalography (EEG) — Subject wears a cap of electrodes while being assessed (Cheaper and allows subject movement but doesn’t access deeper parts of the brain)
How is B2C using Neuromarketing:
B2C brands are heavily investing in reshaping their design, communication and messaging based on neuromarketing results. Feedback and consumer inputs cannot get more honest than a neuromarketing research if done with the right target audience. E.g. Frito-Lay discovered that packaging with matte finish bags with pictures of potatoes did not trigger a negative response while the shiny ones did. They completely changed their bags to matte finish bags within months and saw an increase in sales.
How can we B2B marketers use Neuromarketing:
B2B is steadily adopting using neuromarketing insights. Since B2B marketing is largely about content marketing, email marketing and Inbound, this article will talk about key areas on how to go about it:
1. The Copy — The Brain craves simplicity:
Even if you can fractionally shorten the time taken to process your message, the brain will like it better as a “less time consuming” activity. Our brain prefers this cognitive fluency.
e.g. If I say Alore CRM can help you with its email finder chrome extension, auto-update the CRM, make, track and record calls via its Twilio integration, schedule DRIP campaigns etc. the brain will take longer to break this sentence and process each feature.
However, if I phrase it as “Alore CRM helps up to 50-person sales teams to prospect, connect with and convert more than they do now” — It’s a lot less info to handle for the brain.
ETA: I came upon this very interesting insight on copywriting and thought it was worth sharing ahead. Arbab Usmani, Founder of Uppskill and one of the leading Digital marketers in India talked about how copywriters must know about Oxytocin and Dopamine — The happy hormones.
a. Oxytocin — It invokes trust, togetherness, and openness. It is a bonding hormone in our brains. (We connect better with people because if it)
b. Dopamine — It is a neurotransmitter, it’s all about feeling, wanting, anticipating and craving.
Arbab is a proponent of the angel cocktail — an interplay of these two chemicals and how they work. Therefore, with the help of the angel cocktail, marketers can use these habits and emotions to sell in storytelling, email marketing and Neuromarketing.
As marketers we can train our minds into better storytelling and marketing by training our body to produce these happy hormones — Breaking tasks into smaller brackets and self-rewarding yourself, recognizing accomplishments etc. all bring about a happy hormone surge.
2. Selling to the price sensitive:
a) Price like you’re giving a massage — Alore CRM is for $49 per seat/month. It’s a very lucrative price but to the price sensitive, it might still not be awesome. So, our messaging also talks about getting the same features at 49 what you pay close to $300 for with most competitors.
b) Bundled prices — Too many options and break up of costs tend to scare the price sensitive. Ideally have only 3 price choices and better is to bundle costs into one. We went with the latter strategy.
c) Go Utilitarian — When talking about the product or service talk about the end use than the “Feel good factor” that you may provide. e.g. Filestage a design review SaaS solution targets the designers who are usually price-sensitive. Their message is spot on with their landing page CTA:
3. Using Imagery strategically:
Overlapping the principles of design here, Neuromarketing talks about how a site visitor can be lead onto reading your CTAs. The key here is the direction of the eyes used in the imagery of your site.
Also, a majority of us are trained to read from left to right (Unlike Arabic or Japanese Tategaki of course). It means we are subconsciously programmed to scan any content left to right. So its best to have the CTA to the right unless you have a really powerful design to guide the visitor otherwise.
There’s a very popular research example to share here. Researchers experimented with two landing pages for a diaper brand. Everything was kept the same except for the baby image which had the baby having eye contact with the user and the other with eyes towards the Landing page’s copy. Thereafter the heatmaps tracked showed the following results:
The CTA that worked better was the one which had the baby looking towards the CTA.
Decide what effect you’d like to have with the image. e.g. if it’s a Blog’s featured image that needs to stand out, have the image with a person having direct eye contact with the reader. They click rates will increase. However, if you’re on a landing page and want the reader to read a certain CTA or copy — have the image’s hero look towards that direction.
The CareDox image achieves its intended effect by using an image depicting warmth. yet the subjects of the image looking at each other and hence not distracting the landing page visitor.
Fonts are more important than you thought they were. You sub-consciously realize it as well. You immediately figure out a Disney font would relate to something with children or Times New Roman would be something to do with academic or professional stuff.
The brain prefers fonts like Helvetica, Roboto, Calibri, SF UI where it needs to use lesser time to process the information. Humans correlate things. If they find it cumbersome to read your copy and CTA then they’re more likely to assume that the product would also be complicated unnecessarily.
e.g. when you read the following six sentences all saying the same thing — which ones do you process better?
I’m betting 2, 4 and 6 were quicker to read than the others. and quick is also what your users want!
5. Personalization is the key:
Selling B2B services and products involve a lot of content and email marketing. This invariably means you need to stand out in an ocean of digital content and email reach outs.
Personalization is the only thing that will help you stand out.
Making your copy more effective is writing it form a human perspective. “I did this research and you can benefit from this by reading this” is a better and more impactful way of writing than just saying “One can do a, b and c to solve the issues”
Personalization is a total deal breaker or maker when it comes to email marketing. You know this already because you don’t like generic mass sent emails as well right? Those ones which begin with “Hi there”. It’s just as simple as — the better you personalize emails the more likely you’re able to elicit a response. This of course will also only happen when you’ve done your segmentation well.
Here is a good example from experience. If I just have a list of 1000 CEO’s I can maximum personalize an email to their name or company name. However, if I have a list that’s been segmented really well like 170 CEOs of FinTech companies in New York, I can create a more personalized copy that resonates better with the email recipient.
6. Role of Color:
The color palette you choose can be a crucial factor in the purchase decision of your product. Here’s why:
a) People sub-consciously make a judgment about an environment or product within 90 seconds of being there based on the visual stimuli they perceive. 60% of this perception is based on color alone.
b) When you design ads and newsletters, colored ads are likely to be noticed 42% more than black and white ones!
c) Impulse shopping is likely to be triggered by Orange, Black or Navy Blue while sky blue, Pinks are more attributed to traditional shoppers.
d) 93% consumers are likely to be swayed by visual stimuli
e) Colour can increase brand recognition by 80%
P.S. — Besides colour, other contributing factors include time (slow or fast service. website etc), use of power words, sound and smell.
At Alore one of the reasons we went for Blue in our brand because Blue signifies calm and confidence. That’s how we identify ourselves as a brand and want our customers to feel about the product. A calm and confident mind will strategize better, prospect better and hence reach out better!
8. Pain over Pleasure
Conventionally marketers are taught to talk about the benefits and positive features of a product. However, neuromarketers have discovered that humans tend to notice and process content and subject lines that deal with pain or suffering faster than they do with positive tones.
e.g. OneDrop, a diabetes management platform’s landing page talks about “Diabetes is hard”
This will immediately resonate with the target audience- “The diabetics” who face the everyday pain and hiccups of being diabetic. The copy immediately has their attention because the Target audience feels like they’re being understood or empathised with.
If instead, the copy read something like “Overcome Diabetes” or “ Buy Glucose testing supplies” the copy wouldn’t be impactful with the Diabetics who visit the landing page.
9. Win trust:
How many times do you sign up for a product or service that demands you to enter credit card details? I’m guessing the answer was none or hardly.
That’s your brain deciding for you that you don’t want to step into a situation that involves potential friction. B2B marketers need to take a cue from the brains attraction to non-frictional marketing. Where a consumer does not feel he’s being marketed to.
Realistically this translates to multiple things:
a) Offering Freemium or Free trials of your product with no credit card requirements. It is exactly why at Alore CRM we offer it for free for up to 1000 contacts. It lets users gain full access to the CRM and therefore evaluate its benefits for themselves.
and we aren’t the only one’s who do this:
b) Onboarding process being shortest possible. Try to have the user onboarding as smooth as possible. Do A/B testing with focus groups to see what is working out easier. Tools like Inspectlet, CrazyEgg etc. help you assess the process.
The smoother the onboarding process the more used it will be.
c) Lead magnet forms not having more than 2–3 fields.
Here is something marketers get carried away with. If you are an established brand already, having thousands of visitors every day, a long form is good to qualify leads in your funnel. If you’re at an earlier stage, it’s better to go with a lesser number of fields.
Here’s a good example of how it should be done with the least risk of pissing off the landing page visitor. Just one email to fill.
Based on experience, I however, suggest using two fields — Name and email ID while using lead magnet program. Just makes personalizing your subsequent reach-outs a notch simpler.
Hope the above insights ignited a few thoughts! If you’re a B2B marketer, I would love to hear if/how you’ve been using Neuromarketing based insights in your business (or even something interesting that you’ve heard of in this space.)
ETA — I re-wrote the closing note to leave you with something you’d love and might ignite the spark for neuromarketing like never before.
I’d love to leave you with this amazingly crafted video from Jordan Land. He adapted Simon Sinek’s famous talk “The Human Animal” into this engaging, convincing and amazing video visual. In this video, Simon talks about the role EDSO (Endorphins, Serotonin, Dopamine and Oxytocin) plays in human behaviour.
In the video Simon also talks about Cortisol — the chemical that makes us anxious about things. (Something like how you’d feel on a Monday morning when you have a bad boss waiting at work).
B2B marketers need to steer their users clear off that Cortisol led feeling and harness the EDSO fuelled powerful motivations well. This could mean many things — a fun on-boarding process, better customer service, better social engagement, the right incentives, public customer-recognition, gamifying processes and customer engagement to bring about a feeling of accomplishment. There’s just so many possibilities.
To my tribe. We can do it.
Originally published at blog.alore.io on September 2, 2018.