Sensory Marketing, What is that?
Sensory marketing and sensory branding is a form of a marketing strategy focused around appealing to each of the five senses we have to influence an emotional response. By focusing on all of our senses; smell, touch, sight, taste, and sound, not only make your brand stand out, but also guide you in creating a long-lasting impression on your audience. The goal is to seduce the audience to feel such an emotion that engages them to turn their newly found emotion or feeling into a desire to take a form of action. This approach is a multi-sensory experience utilizing what we know about neurobiology and social psychology.
According to Martin Lindstrom, author of Brand Sense – Build Powerful Brands through Touch, Taste, Smell, Sight, and Sound, here are the top industry leaders back in 2005:
Top Leaders of Sensory Branding
- Singapore Airlines
- Mercedes Benz
These are pretty established brands that are very strict and consistent in their marketing. As a consumer, you know you are getting an experience, not just a product.
What about me?
Most small business owners not only lack the knowledge and experience, but they also require the budget and time needed to invest in mastering such a complicated and resource heavy strategy. Traditional marketing is an easier solution and has been favored because it’s easier and more comfortable to execute. Ask yourself, that last radio spot you created about a “factory blow-out deal,” did it appeal to the taste and smell senses? Sure, if I was searching for a car or a new air conditioner, and I hear there is a sale going on, I might pay attention. What makes me as a consumer remember you versus the other “factory blow-out deal” I just heard on the radio? I mean by now, as a consumer, every holiday there will be “the best deal ever” so I wait and make my purchases around a holiday. Knowing that business owners have to advertise heavy during peak times to compete against all their competitors doing the exact same strategy and media companies raise the rates knowing YOU are doing to do this again and again. Who is winning here? Now as a business owner you are struggling to get those sales in-between these cycles and be pulling out all your creative tricks to be heard out of all the other noise of the exact same offers your competitors are presenting. Are you really saving money at the end of the day?
Okay, now I am listening.
Let’s go back to my “factory blow-out deal” scenario above and talk about the smell and taste senses that are hard to accomplish for car dealerships or stand-alone products. How do I make someone “smell” that new car? How do I make them taste that smell of the new car in the back of their throat? Well, really amazing videos and graphics can do this. Think about Mercedes Benz for a moment. When you think about their cars, you can smell the leather, feel the leather, almost taste the luxury feeling. The images used may seem simple, but the lighting, backdrops, the angle all play a huge role in your psyche. The simple fact that we as consumers expect every dollar spent on this vehicle is just fine, because of the way it will make us feel about owning one. This was not done overnight, this was done by design with actual scientific data, creativity, and planning.
Where do I begin to change my marketing process?
First, you need to have a concept that you can carry out that is timeless that can be repurposed in multiple ways through multiple channels.
Second, you have to have a strategy around the timing of your messaging. You don’t want to be sitting through your sales season and find yourself looking for new concepts, this needs to be well throughout and planned in advance.
Last, you need to have all your designs, videos, content, and voice completed in advance to avoid wasting your time and resources scrambling for assets that don’t fall within your overall marketing strategy.
Where should I include this in my marketing and branding efforts?
Simple, everywhere. Yes, be aware of the sensory marketing next time you start planning. Think to yourself, what sense are we capturing here? How can we make it better? Most of society use their mobile devices these days more than their laptop or desktop. When you are on your cell phone, what are YOU doing and what social channels are YOU using? If you are using those, most likely your customers are too! What messages can you appeal through that social platform to entice a user? Think about what people search for on social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Google My Business, etc. What are people doing while they are on apps? What are people searching for on Google or Bing? Know what your audience is doing on each platform and customize your message for each accordingly, mastering as many senses as you can on each.
What is the easiest way to get started?
First, audit what you are currently doing and poke holes in it for improvement. See what you can reuse and make adjustments to drive better performance. Are you getting in front of your audience at the right time of day or day of the week? Get more research and compare that to the new GAP analysis you created during your audit. Test, measure, optimize, and test again. Need further help getting started? Contact us today and ask about our video services. We offer a variety of videos we can create to get your sensory message across to use on your website and social media platforms.
Growing up in the Midwest paved the foundation of my wholesome family values and birthed the desire to see the world that existed beyond the cornfields. Professionally my journey has led me to be a digital marketing nomad, never settling for one specific marketing craft. My experience and love for others have let me to the path of inspiring others to push beyond their fears and overcome the things holding them back from being the greatest version of themselves. I love to learn, volunteer, travel, and laugh.