If you’ve heard me present, along with Pine and Gilmore’s book The Experience Economy, I also blend in the thoughts of Martin Lindstrom, author of BRAND sense.
My favorite quote from BRAND sense:
“83% of marketing appeals to sight, leaving a paltry 17% to the other senses. Surprisingly smell is the second most important sense after sight, and not sound. In fact 75% of all emotional connections are based upon smell.”
So I’m reading the 12/8/2008 issue of AdAge and come across a brilliant essay by Lindstrom:
How Apple, Others Have Cultivated Religious Followings
(may require AdAge subscription)
For his new book Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy based on a three-year, $7 million neuromarketing study by Lindstrom “to compare the brain activity of devout Christians to that of brand fans. It turned out that brand iconography activated the same region in the brains of fans that was activated in the brains of Christians when they were exposed to faith-related triggers. But that was the case only with emotionally powerful brands such as Apple, Harley and Guinness.”
Here are the nine “religious” components that emotionally engaging brands master:
1. A clear vision
2. A sense of belonging
3. An enemy
4. Sensory Appeal
Where does your school stand in its mastery of these? (click here to access the full article/comparison of the above nine (may require AdAge subscription)
When l tour and visit campuses, I’m frequently witnessing a disconnect. Meaning, most schools do the above nine “religious” tenets very well in their student experience. But, most fail to scale them (or even reveal them) in their marketing efforts. Instead of confidently tapping into the behavior of their zealots as an authentic means to connect with new or prospective students, colleges/universities and their creative agencies are still cranking out out-dated, traditional monologue (and often monolithic) marketing efforts like viewbooks, search, and passive campus visits.
As higher education’s Experience Evangelist, I hope I inspire you to find “redemption.” The short-term future looks bleak. How will you recruit students in this economic malaise? By the same top-down, ink-on-paper outdated marketing or by by finding some “religion?”
Read more about our authors. Jeff is the VP of the Consulting Division and also known as the “Apostle of Authenticity.” He crisscrosses the country speaking at conferences and working with our clients. He’s driven by a mission to inspire higher education executives and admissions offices to overthrow dead culture, embrace their authentic “DNA” and render engaging experiences.