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Pumping Up The Emotional Side Of Gizmos, Widgets And Powdered Eggs.
Conventional wisdom has it that business-to-business advertising must be jam-packed with facts. But today, facts are not enough.
All advertising copy consists of two elements: What is said and how it's said. What is said is rational part of message -- claims and benefits that result from careful positioning and strategy. How it's said is emotional element -- look of advertising, and charm, humor, nostalgia, empathy, sense of security, beauty, or sense of style and quality that is conveyed.
Knowing when and how to use emotion is most important part of a copywriter's and art director's job. Because, whether we like to admit it or not, most purchase decisions -- greeting card or giant machinery, new car or new factory roof -- are made for emotional, not rational, reasons.
A Couple Of Definitions. We've been told that emotion is probably best defined by observation that emotions are feelings. How important is that? Very. Because feelings are everything in people's lives. They dictate where we live, who we live with, who our friends are, what we read, what we eat, what we drive, where we go on vacation, what we laugh at, what we cry about and what we want out of life. And they tell us what to buy, when to buy, where to buy, and who to buy from.
We've also been told that a definition of communication is interchange of ideas between two people. But, in advertising, we have to go beyond that. Our business must be interchange of feelings between two people. We have to make people really feel something about products and companies we advertise. Otherwise, they won't buy. And if they don't buy, we've failed. So, simple truth of matter is: The only advertising that works is advertising that makes somebody feel something. Four Thoughts, No Rules. Explaining how to use emotion in advertising is difficult, if not impossible. It all depends on situation and abilities of people involved. But here are some things that may help put subject in perspective.
Businessmen And-Women Are People, Too. Some will argue, especially in today's downsized work environment, that businessperson is besieged, harried and overworked. And all they have time for is facts. True, perhaps. But it is also true that they are being constantly being bombarded with information at every turn. Which means that if your advertising is going to be successful -- if it is going to stand out from clutter -- you better deliver it in an emotional envelope. Whether you're a man or woman, working man or working woman, prudent veteran, or a kid just out of school isn't important. Emotional advertising has a universal kind of communication that works. Warmth, humor, charm, flair -- these are things we all relate to, respond to. Emotional advertising transcends demographic position of reader or viewer. People in all walks of life respond to wit, to being talked to in a flattering and friendly way, to being liked. People like advertising that makes them feel good -- about your product, about your company, about themselves.