Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Arouse Emotions to Drive Online Sharing

These past few years, consumer behavior researchers have been busy determining what leads to online advertising and publicity going viral. What those researchers are discovering should guide your marketing of your retail business. Here’s a compilation of findings from different sets of studies.
  • Arouse emotions at the start. Television ads have often been designed to build toward a laugh or a revelation. The rules are different with the online video format. Harvard University researchers analyzed viewer’s facial expressions to spot smiles, frowns, and signs that the viewer had stopped paying attention to an online ad. The conclusion: Dropout happens fast unless there’s a jolt of emotion promptly after the video begins. The best emotions to use are joy and awe, which are both upbeat feelings. Best of all is to use them in combination. 
  • Negative emotions work, too. University of Pennsylvania findings indicate that outrage and fear increase the odds online content will be passed on to many others by the recipient. Outrage could be used in a political campaign against a candidate or pending law. Fear could be used to encourage consumers to protect themselves against a risk. Recognize that both outrage and fear are high arousal. In the research, the low-arousal emotion of sadness didn’t help propagate online content. 
  • The level of arousal is more important than the practical usefulness of the information conveyed. Still, it helps when you give viewers substance to share. The Harvard researchers suggest targeting ads to people exhibiting two personality characteristics associated with forwarding video links to others: Egocentrism and extroversion. The egocentrics want to impress others with their knowledge. The extroverts want to share their knowledge with others. The rule for propagating any sort of virus: Give people something they’ll pass around. 
  • Make your store name and logo informative, not intrusive. Using eye-tracking cameras, the Harvard researchers discovered how the viewer’s attention is drawn to a store name and, even more, a well-designed logo. However, if the name or logo are too prominent, consumers will feel like they are being manipulated. One alternative is for you to weave your store name and logo into the marketing piece, showing them repeatedly, but not continuously. A better alternative, in my opinion, is to put the name or logo in the lower right corner of the video, where it serves as information for the viewer without getting in the viewer’s direct field of vision. 
For your profitability: Sell Well: What Really Moves Your Shoppers

Click below for more: 
Catch the News About Viral Video Ads
Use Both Repetition and Progression in Ads

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