The Art of Neuromarketing

Neuromarketing is a complicated art, relying on a combination of behavioural sciences and traditional marketing that borrows knowledge from academic fields such as neuroscience, psychology, economics, cultural anthropology, business, and political science. Through the use of scientific knowledge and an understanding of the brain, it removes much of the costly guesswork involved in both online and offline marketing.  This in turn helps save costs associated with market research, improves day-to-day business practices, and optimizes marketing initiatives.

How does neuromarketing work?
Neuromarketing is first and foremost based on neuroscience. Technologies such as fMRIs and electroencephalography allow us to get a rough idea about what is going on in someone’s brain as they make decisions, experience stimuli, or attempt to complete tasks. Based on knowledge derived from these technologies, we can better understand certain global behavioural characteristics. These behavioural characteristics in turn allow us to direct marketing campaigns in the right direction, and make better marketing decisions.

Psychology is the next main field that plays a role in neuromarketing. Unlike neuroscience, many psychology studies do not rely on biological data to reach their conclusions. Rather, they center on various types of interactive research. This means that they are often subject to various forms of bias, and not always repeatable. However, when psychological studies are backed up by neuroscience, or repeated globally and cross-culturally with similar results, they become a powerful tool for prediction and strategic marketing.

An understanding of culture is possibly the most important aspect of neuromarketing.  While neuroscience and psychology help predict human behaviour, they often ignore cultural differences.  These differences can be very subtle, but can have a significant impact on the findings of studies, or the use of research techniques.  Cultural psychology and cultural anthropology allow us to gain understandings of different cultures, as well as some understanding of their relationship to psychology and neuroscience.  However, culture is very subjective. With cultural diversity in many of the world’s largest cities, it becomes difficult to categorize people, and thus generate viable target markets.  Therefore, it is often best to direct marketing initiatives towards cultural sub-groups, such as fitness enthusiasts, book lovers, gamers, sports fans, etc.  These lifestyle-based cultures supersede many of the ideals we are raised with, and allow us to create somewhat accurate generalizations.  Further, by understanding the cultures that have risen alongside the internet, we can individualize brands, and take advantage of targeted marketing opportunities.

Economics and political science are also important fields to take into consideration. An understanding of current economic and financial environments is crucial in determining pricing strategies, as well as the viability of multi-branding.  Similarly, knowledge of political environments is important in relation to brand management (staying politically correct), and understanding the cultures that arise with loyalty to federal or local parties/politicians.

Neuromarketing requires a deep and extensive knowledge of these fields and many more. Mastering it is an art. Determining which studies to apply in each unique situation, and predicting possible roadblocks, is a skill developed over time.  But that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of it.

This blog acts as an introduction to neuromarketing, covering studies and theories from different fields and sources.  By reading these posts you will gain an understanding of many of the most prominent techniques, as well as knowledge of new studies that have potential.

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We hope you enjoy learning about neuromarketing, and find value in our strategies and techniques.