Over the past few years, digital marketing has become highly customer-oriented. To create highly targeted marketing campaigns, you first need to know how your customers think.
It is extremely difficult to create personalized content or offer relevant deals if you are not sure how they will resonate with your target audience.
That’s when marketing psychology comes into action…
Many studies tend to unveil common psychological principles and explain how people operate. Understanding them will serve as your solid starting point for you when designing marketing strategies.
Here are 5 ways you can take advantage of marketing psychology:
Table of Contents:
1. Leverage the Psychology of Reciprocity
Dr. Robert Cialdini explained the principles of persuasion in his work The Psychology of Persuasion. As Cialdini illustrates it, if a waiter brings a check without a candy to a customer, they will not get a tip.
If they put a candy on the tray, the tip will grow 3.3%. Moreover, if the waiter places two candies on the tray and tells a customer that they were meant specifically for them, the tip will reach the astonishing 20%. The same rule applies to digital marketing.
With so many brand options at their disposal, customers will always weigh whether buying from you is worth it.
For example, you cannot just ask a customer to give you their email address. To do so, they expect you to give something in return. No matter if it is a branded pen, access to your beta product, an exclusive piece of content, or a giveaway, the value you provide will inspire people to join your email newsletter list.
That been said, you always need to offer a relevant and valuable lead magnet that will resonate with your customers.
2. Build Trust with Social Proof
Social proof is a theory that people conform to the actions and beliefs of a larger group of people. Back in 1951, Solomon Asch wanted to test it. He invited college students to participate in a simple line judgment test.
Students needed to say which of three lines in the right picture matched the line in the left picture. The participants were divided into groups, where only one person in each group was actually tested. Others were insiders, who were told to provide wrong answers.
Even though the answer was easy and obvious, 75% of people tested conformed to the group and gave the wrong answer. This happened for two reasons – they either wanted to belong to the group or they believed they knew less than other participants.
Social proof is a powerful tool when it comes to building customer relationships and it plays a fundamental role in digital marketing. When used strategically, it will gain your target audience’s trust and boost your conversions.
Now, there are many tactics to use, including:
- User/customer count.
The number of your customers increases your brand trustworthiness and inspires people to join their community.
Apart from just saying how many customers you have, you could also use a social proof tool like Cue to show notifications of your latest leads and customers.
Social proof software can also inform customers about the total number of people that converted over the last 7 or 30 days and, in this way, encourage them to join the group.
- Customers’ testimonials.
Saying how cool your products are is not enough for your prospective customers. To gain their trust, you need to show what other people are saying about you.
That is where you should ask your satisfied customers to write testimonials and emphasize how your product or services helped them solve specific problems. To make testimonials more trustworthy, include a customer’s photo, too.
- Positive reviews.
Enable customer reviews on your website, social networks, business listing directories, etc. According to BrightLocal, 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Don’t ignore or delete negative comments. Instead, use them to help dissatisfied customers solve problems and turn them into your brand advocates.
- Influencer endorsements.
Statistics say that content posted by social media influencers generates 8 times the engagement rate of branded content. It is not surprising at all, given that 40% of people say they have bought a product online after seeing that a social media influencer uses it.
When investing in influencer marketing, it is important to connect with the people in the same industry, who target the same audience groups and create high-quality content.
3. Take Advantage of Scarcity Marketing
In 1975, researchers conducted a thought-provoking experiment. Namely, they placed 10 chocolate chip cookies in one jar and only 2 of the same cookies in another jar. Then, they asked people what cookies they preferred.
Even though these were the same cookies, those from the two-cookie jar received far higher ratings. The reason behind this is logical – the quantity of products directly impacts their demand and popularity.
In the digital world, scarcity marketing is immensely important. If you are going to use this strategy, you need to implement it tactfully.
For example, you do not want people to think that there are only a few products total on your website. To evoke their fear of missing out, you will need to emphasize that most of your products have been sold out due to popular demand.
Now, there are numerous ways to implement scarcity marketing and some of them are:
Tell customers how many products are there in stock. For example, if a customer learns that there are only 3 products in stock left, they will be more likely to make an impulse purchase.
Set strict deadlines when sending email promotions. By telling your customers when your discounts or promotions will expire, you will trigger their FOMO and motivate them to visit your site faster.
Use countdown timers on your website or email promotions to make your time-sensitive offers prominent and motivate people to buy from you immediately.
Use push notifications. If you have built a mobile app, you can send messages directly to your customers. This way, you will not need to worry about open rates – every customer that uses push notifications on their smartphones will receive your message. This is a great opportunity to promote timely offers and maximize conversions.
Upsell your customers by delivering value. For example, when a customer is buying a product, you could recommend similar, but more powerful products at a slightly higher price.
You could even recommend limited products and deals. Amazon does this. For example, while their standard shipping takes 5-7 days, their Prime membership comes with 2-day free shipping.
On certain days in a year, this popular brand provides discounted Prime memberships. That is how they inspire customers to keep coming to their website regularly and track their updates.
4. Use Anchoring
Anchoring means that our previous experiences with brands impact our current decisions. For example, if a customer goes to your website and sees that the jacket that typically costs $60 can now be bought for $30, they will be overwhelmed and purchase it immediately. However, if their friend usually buys jackets for $25, they will not be impressed with your discount.
When planning a big sale on your website, keep this in mind. Instead of displaying your new price only, you should also state the initial price of the product. You could also show in percentages how much your customers will save up if they purchase the product during the discount period.
5. Build Brand Awareness with the Frequency Illusion
Has this ever happened to you? After you hear about a certain product for the first time, you start encountering it everywhere. That is what we call the frequency illusion or the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon.
There are two key processes that cause this phenomenon. The first is selective attention – you learn something new and it starts appearing in front of you all the time. The second is the confirmation bias that convinces you that the frequency at which you are seeing the product is proof of its popularity.
In digital marketing, the frequency illusion phenomenon is vital. Say a customer is browsing through your website, viewed your products, and registered to put an item to the shopping cart. However, they left the website without converting.
Now that they are familiar with your brand and products, it is time to start sending targeted email newsletters and retargeting them via paid ads. This is how you will boost brand awareness and inspire leads to come back and complete the purchase.
Over to You
In today’s user-centric digital marketing landscape, psychology and marketing go hand in hand. Understanding how your customers think, you will be able to create more personalized deals, maximize brand awareness, and build stronger relationships with them. These are important factors that will ultimately result in higher conversion rates.
Do you use marketing psychology to increase conversions?
This was a guest post from Elaine Bennett. She is is a digital marketing specialist focused on helping startups and small businesses grow. Besides that, she’s a regular contributor for Bizzmark Blog and writes hands-on articles about business and marketing, as it allows her to reach even more entrepreneurs and help them on their business journey.
If you’re interested in publishing a guest article here, take a look at the requirements for guest posting here and follow the instructions provided.