Why is it that Coca-Cola and Grey Goose both don’t fare well in taste tests, yet one is the market leader in its category, and the other commands a premium that is nearly double the price of its competitors?
The reason is that emotional connection overpowers rational taste buds to create brand insistence and influence consumer choice.
The Blake Project accelerates brand growth by helping our clients better understand how emotions drive customer behavior in their categories and making those insights actionable in their marketplace and within their organizations.
Our process is uniquely designed to build and activate your customers’ emotional connection to your brand. Here’s how it works. First, we talk with your customers to understand what emotional connection currently exists and to what degree and then we gain your consensus on what types of emotional connection you would like to increase. Next, we lead you in a series of ideation sessions in which we design sources of increased emotional connection against your objectives. Finally, we prioritize the ideas generated in the ideation sessions and pull it all together in a comprehensive report of recommended actions.
In the first part of the research phase, we seek to understand how your brand connects with its customers and with which customer attitudes and values it is best aligned. We typically conduct this exploration by customer segment. In part two of the research phase we measure and map human motivators, another critical component in understanding where your brand can win on the emotional plane. In our consensus building workshop with you, we also probe to understand by what values your organization strives to live and with what personality attributes. The ideation sessions are highly facilitated. They include a broad array of creativity exercises and ideation techniques and are always energizing for participants.
We will often organize the workshop by customer touch point and will explore how different behaviors, processes and senses affect your customers’ emotional connection to your brand. We apply a speciﬁc set of evaluation criteria to the ideas generated at the ideation sessions to insure that the ones you choose have the highest impact and ROI possible.
A Closer Look
The work is comprised of three components. Two robust research steps followed by a workshop designed to ideate ways to integrate greater emotionality into each customer touch point for your brand:
1. Focus groups designed to explore emotionality and your Brand.
We will conduct two groups with each customer segment. The groups include the following elements:
a. Exploration of people’s feelings and emotions related to their favorite brands.
b. Exploration of people’s feelings and emotions associated with your brand.
c. A discussion of what it would take to create the same feelings for your brand that people have for their favorite brands.
In our exploration of emotionality and your brand our expert moderators and brand strategists will use various projective techniques to help reveal the insight we seek.
2. Measure and map all of the human motivators that drive purchase decisions through our consumer motivation measurement platform.
An understanding of consumer purchase behavior must be based on knowledge of human emotion and include the paramount influence that emotions have on decision-making. Which is why in our second deep dive we employ a proprietary and world-class human motivation measurement & mapping technology developed through 6 years of R&D and 800,000+ pilot interviews. The model has been globally validated with in-market data over the last 15 years.
In addition to traditional research measures, this human motivation measurement technology helps you identify your brand’s emotional ‘right space’ – the positioning that evokes emotions that are most likely to drive purchase, loyalty, and advocacy. The platform helps you, your designers, and agencies consistently activate this emotional ‘right space’ across all of your communications, touch points, and activations.
3. In the highly facilitated Emotional Connection Workshop, we work with you to use the insights generated from the first two research steps and ideate new brand experiences at each point of customer contact to create a significantly stronger emotional connection between your brand and its customers and potential customers.
We will focus on each type of emotional connection that you want to build at each point of customer contact and we will ideate a large number of ideas to achieve this. We will also identify additional customer touch points where the desired type of emotional connection can be built. Once we have generated a very large number (hundreds) of ideas, we will organize these ideas into groups and then evaluate and choose the best ideas based on high impact, easy implementation and lower cost. Time permitting, we will more fully develop each of the top ideas into immediately actionable initiatives.
The Emotional Connection Workshop includes a wide variety of creativity exercises and ideation techniques focused on very specific emotional connection objectives.
Brad VanAuken leads The Blake Project’s emotional connection workshops, drawing on his considerable experience in building emotional connections as Hallmark’s chief brand advocate.
The strongest brands meet human needs on an emotional level. How well does your brand connect?