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Cavemen consumers crave stories according to DraftFCB

27 March 2012
Cavemen consumers crave stories according to DraftFCB

Despite our technological prowess and expertise, we are all still cavemen wanting to tell stories around the fire according to DraftFCB’s global digital lead Martin Talks.

As part of social media week, Talks’ presentation looked at the psychology of online influence and concluded that people still inherently want to tell stories and that this primal drive can be tapped into for better marketing results and consumer engagement. Brands can better connect to consumers through the trust that people have for recommendations from their friends and contacts, by keeping products and marketing simple and focusing on the quality as opposed to quantity of social marketing.

Talks used the viral success of Kony 2012 as an example of how effective generating an emotional response can be in reaching your audience, outlining the idea that irrational and emotional responses drive consumers far more than rational and logical reasoning.

Peer Index chief executive and founder Azeem Azhar was also speaking at the event, explaining the success its service has had with identifying people who regularly influence people in their social groups. Azhar added that getting people to try your product will lead to them recommending it across their social networks due to the story telling urge.

“People can’t be authentic brand advocates unless they try your products, and a big barrier is them having to buy it for the first time,” says Azhar. “The caveman in us is naturally a product advocate. He’s going to talk about the elk he killed. He’s going to talk about that beautiful view over the rock outside his two room cave, and that sticks with us.”

Talks also argued that keeping things simple is an effective way of doing business. DraftFCB’s work with the UK Film Council found that instances of piracy were reduced by making the finding and buying of a film straightforward. Talks stressed that “easy beats free” most of the time. People suffering from decision fatigue could also derail them from their customer journey if the marketing or product becomes too complicated. Consumers only having enough energy to make so many decisions, which makes it important to keep marketing and sales processes streamlined.

When debating the success of the freemium business model sweeping the app store, it was concluded that consumers are happier to spend their time than their money. “To use an example, with our finance director, he will always say ‘my door’s always open’ but I’ve never yet heard him say ‘my wallet is always open’,” added Talks.

David Hing, London

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