Marija Mihajlova - 05/07/2020 - Digital Marketing - 0 Comments

Emotional Branding: What Is It and How It Affects Buying Behavior

Have you ever bought something because of its back story? Think of coca-cola, when buying we often find ourselves buying out of emotion. Why? Well, because the brand clearly suggests that we aren't buying just a beverage, but happy moments spent over lunch with our family as well.

We are often on a crossroad trying to defend our emotional buying with logic. The brands that focus on emotional branding, are focusing on a special way of connecting with their customers. They want to create a significant bond and always nurture their consumers.

Good emotional branding connects with the buyer on a personal level. This kind of marketing is a strategic way to convey emotions and a high ROI at the same time. One is connected with the other, right?
In this blog post, I'll try to explain to you the benefits of using emotional branding in your digital marketing strategy. Stay tuned if you are prepared for a little bit of brain science.

What Is Emotional Branding?

If you've ever watched Simon Sinek's famous talk you are probably familiar with the fact that people don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it. Emotional marketing is highly connected to this.

To make matters clearer, let's start with the most obvious example.
Apple's die-hard consumers are queued up days in advance before a product launch. So, what makes Apple so sought-after?
Compassion, innovation, uniqueness, and focus on costumers. Apple has created a brand that is in a way intimate with its clients. It always connects its products with creativeness, imagination, and tech-driven love. The brand has formed a far more meaningful relationship with users, a connection that's exceeding business relationships and forms an emotional bond.

They've achieved the goal of emotional branding. Their products will forever be distinguished from any other brand in the same field.

So, simply put, emotional branding is a way of building a relationship between a purchaser and a product or brand by evoking their emotions. This is often done by generating content that attracts the consumers' emotional state, personality, desires, and hopes.

Why Is Emotional Branding so Effective?

Nowadays, consumerism is growing, but consumers' decisions on how they are buying are changing. People are buying based on how the brand, product, or company makes them feel.
This can be clearly seen with millennials and the gen-z population.

When it comes to buying, using a service, or even working at a company, the emotions that are evoked play a huge role. Industrialization is so out of the picture. When you think Google, your mind immediately goes to the benefits, space, and the relationship it builds with its users and employees.

When people 'judge' brands, they use their sentiments, based on their personal emotions and experiences. That's why connecting emotionally with your customers is one of the most powerful factors.

While many businesses build their emotional branding around values and creativity, some want to influence consumers by using neuromarketing.

The word YOU connected with emotional motivations that are the basis of Emotional Branding


Neuromarketing is the use of neuroscience in marketing. This involves the use of brain activity measurement technology to show a subject's response to some marketing elements.

With neuroscience, we are able to study the cognitive response of human beings. This interprets into neuromarketing when we start applying these concepts to how they might impact a consumer's decision of buying something.

Harvard Business Review did research on hundreds of brands in different categories to show that it’s possible to measure and strategically target the feelings that drive customers’ habits. They called them 'emotional motivators'. These basically show that people:

  • Want to be seen as special and connect with a brand that offers uniqueness;
  • Want to experience a sense of belonging and be part of a particular group;
  • Want to satisfy a desire for continuous self-improvement and want to relate with a brand that lives up to their ideal self-image;
  • Want to find worth that goes past economic measures (protect the environment, don't stereotype people, be who you want to be).

Crafting these kinds of messages helps build your brand around people's sentiments which leads to becoming a recognizable name, even if you are a smaller company.

Emotional Branding 101


Obviously, tailored messages target the consumers' ego by making them feel special and appreciated. Moreover, making these communications more natural and as individualized as possible appeal to the nature of the human brain and make people feel more connected with your product or service.

Good Visuals

Emotional branding is often connected with colors and exquisite graphical designs. People pay attention to the colors in your ads, the logo you are using, its fonts, and the hidden messages you are trying to convey. Creating something that will stick with them long after they've seen it connects with their emotional side. This is because of the visceral processing of emotions.

Example of a visceral image from WWF that emotionally connects with people

Encourage Engagement

Engaging with your users makes them feel more involved with your brand and receiving their emotional reactions should be your target. This will create user-generated content and provide you with lasting connections.

A widely popular example is the #ShareaCoke campaign that encouraged people from all over the world to share moments, but most importantly their beverage with family, friends, and the world.

Coca-Cola's #ShareaCoke Campaign that generated user content and encouraged engagement.

Focus on Good Customer Service

Being available and responsive to people's messages, needs, and concerns is building trust and helps you stand out from the rest of the companies.

Remember when Samsung's phones exploded a few years back?
Well, they apologized and replaced the user's phones even more than once. This didn't stop people from buying Samsung phones in the future, in fact, it made them trust the brand even more. They knew that whatever happened, the brand had their back and made sure their needs were satisfied no matter what.

Wrapping Things Up

To sum up, you need to really get emotional with your branding. This is proven to inspire customers to use, buy, and recommend your products or services.

When developing your strategy, make sure to captivate their attention, to add a personal touch, to firmly build relationships based on genuine trust and availability, and to use word-of-mouth in your own benefit.

This will develop customer loyalty and will make your brand part of the user's lifestyle.

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