We are just emotional creatures. Our purchasing decisions are 80% emotional and only 20% rational * …

Consumers buy a product because they want it, more than because they need it. Emotions dictate purchasing decisions, much more than reason. This is why content marketing that stimulates emotion is more effective than that based on rational thinking alone.

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How does the incredible power of emotion in engagement content marketing work? What emotions to stage? How do you use emotions to create more effective content?

Engagement, the ultimate goal of content marketing

Your content should not seek to sell directly. But, it must help the user to move forward in the purchasing process. So you have to encourage him to continue his journey in your conversion tunnel. And therefore to engage with you.

The power to convince, according to Aristotle

How to get your target to follow you? In rhetoric according to Aristotle, 3 means of persuasion exist:

  • The logos which refers to rationality;
  • The pathos which is based on emotion;
  • The ethos which refers to the image projected by the speaker.

A speech must be based on these 3 foundations to bear all its fruit. The logos represents the logical argument to support. The ethos appeals to charisma and speaker’s credibility. The pathos seeks to touch audience sensitivity, make her feel emotions and seduce her.
Aristotelian thought proves to be an excellent source of inspiration for successful content marketing.

Emotion, a very powerful vector of engagement

Detailing the functionality of your product or service is not enough. Why ? Faced with their difficulties or needs, individuals react with their emotions. Your prospects must have the feeling that you help find an answer suited to their bread (point of pain). They are looking for a sense of accomplishment in purchasing, more than a Cartesian solution.

How do you get consumers’ attention? You must then “touch” them by engaging their emotions. Seek to show that you understand them: be empathic. And then, to convert these leads into customers? Put in place emotional calls-to-action throughout their journey through the sales funnel.

Differences between B2C and B2B? Buying decisions in BtoB are also emotional, but they don’t act like in BtoC. Because decision-making is more complex, longer and involves more people, emotion in B to B plays a different role than in B to C. Motivations of people are also divergent. Your strategy must take this into account.

What emotions to arouse?

Generally, when we talk about emotions in marketing, we quote 6.

Happiness

Seeking to associate your business or your offer with joy is obviously a good idea. Content that gives off something positive, enjoyable or exciting promote engagement and sharing.

A Psychology Today article concludes that positive emotions towards a brand have more benefits on customer loyalty than trust and other appreciations. To you, cute kittens and other gifs “really too cute ! Finally … there are other types of content feel good to produce, if you prefer 😉

Fear

Widely used, anxiety is a powerful emotion. But sometimes it’s difficult to use it properly. It can scare or put off your target.
When well used, it particularly promotes sharing. This is one of the conclusions of the study “What Makes online Content Viral? By Katherine Milkman and Jonah Berger, professors at Wharton. She says that the anxiety-provoking content analyzed by the New York Times is 21% better than the average.

Anger

Like anxiety, anger is viral. For example, in the Milkman and Berger survey, content that relies on anger is 34% more likely to be emailed than an average article.
However, this emotion should be handled with care. We must offer constructive and engaging content that will encourage Internet users to share (… their anger).

Sadness

This emotion is not the most obvious to integrate into your content marketing. At first glance, sadness seems not very rewarding for a brand. Humanitarian and self-help organizations are more likely to use it.
Generally speaking, it will allowexpose the bread of your target and show that your offer is the solution. But not ending your text on a sad note is an elementary principle. Sadness is interesting in the empathy it generates and the will for personal action it arouses.

Surprise

Arousing astonishment is a way to make your target audience interested in your content and avoid boredom. Know how to surprise your audience by enchanting them perpetually.
A Incongruous, confusing or unusual content increases “consumer interest, awareness, and persuasion,” according to Ashley Taylor Anderson of the Content Marketing Institute blog. Well-built, the unexpected can delight your targets.

Curiosity

A good copywritten title or a clickbait is attractive enough to encourage people to click. But what tickles and excites your audience? It is necessary appeal to his unconscious need to fill his ignorance. It’s the curiosity gap by George Loewenstein.

However, if your content disappoints after the click, you will not engage your target. So think about meeting their expectations. You must keep the promise of your title to maintain public interest.

How to use emotion in your content marketing?

Discover 9 tips for handling emotions in your content.

1 # Show your prospect that you understand him

How to make the most of the emotions of your targets? Get to know them well. Study them from your KPIs (key performance indicators), your CRM software (customer relationship management), their discussions on social networks … Do what they do: read the same as them to put yourself in their shoes and adopt their state of mind.

In your content, be empathetic from the hook. Get to the heart of your prospect by targeting their problem head-on. Highlight the sensitivity of the case or the pain the problem causes. Finish on the crucial point: you have the solution!

2 # Adapt the emotions used to the bread of your targets

The emotional levers on which you will rely will differ depending on the primary motivation of your audience. This is why it is essential to know it well. Ask yourself what he is really looking for. What exactly motivates him?

So if your audience is concerned with health, fear is an interesting emotion to use; if she is looking for fashion ideas, favor curiosity; if she’s interested in international news, stimulate sadness…

3 # Create a strong emotional connection with your business

Why create an emotional attachment? Because an individual buys more easily from a store to which he feels close. The power of the connection that binds you helps to complete the purchase and therefore to overcoming barriers and obstacles to purchasing. Ritika Puri and Neil Patel talk about the “brand personality”.

The link between your company and its customers is also very profitable in the long term. For what benefits? You can count on them for repurchase, and also for sharing your content in their relational sphere. Humanizing your business by attaching customers to your brand is therefore a profitable process. See Apple or Starbucks, which are great examples.

4 # Use your intrinsic qualities

Using emotions does not mean lying or cheating. Be yourself ! When looking to enter into a long-term relationship, you have to to be true, honest and sincere. A manipulative approach should be avoided. Build on what you are, your strong values, those that you instill in your SME every day.

It is in this authenticity that you will find the means to stand out from your competitors. Thus your offer perceived as unique will be able to engage your targets in the long term. By bringing your essential characteristics, you also promote the identification of your target with your brand and remain present in the minds.

5 # Build a conversation with your audience

Hooking up an individual through your content marketing is not enough. You must prevent him from going elsewhere to develop your relationship. You have to advance in your funnel in order to transform him into a loyal customer.

How to do ? Your sales tunnel must have subtle and fluid steps. Find out more about your prospect. Ask him. Request it. The consumer has an aversion to forced marketing. Let it advance at its own pace without putting your offer forward too early.

6 # Tell an intense story to your audience

To gain buy-in from your target, your message must be credible and inspire confidence. By wanting to play too much with the emotions of their audience, some companies may have lost their aura. Consumers are not fooled by manipulative marketing tactics with big strings.

Use storytelling. With what aim in sight? To create a plausible, inspiring and engaging story. We come to the concept of reinsurance, fundamental in web marketing. It represents how a company will reassure a potential buyer to encourage the act of purchase.

7 # Vary the types of emotion used

Do not be monomaniac; vary the emotions. If your content marketing only conveys happiness, it will appear artificial, even manipulative. You will then appear dishonest in the eyes of your targets, as Matt Clough explains on the Contently blog. Likewise, not all of your content can stimulate anger, in which case you will end up irritating your audience.

So it’s really a question of writing a emotion partition. Each should be used to maximize its benefits, without its drawbacks. A certain balance is to be found in connection with your strategic positioning and the motivations of your audience.

8 # Use the evocative power of colors

We know it colors call for an emotional response. It is also interesting to punctuate your marketing with visuals showing the colors going in the direction of your message. An illustration has a notable impact on engagement in affecting the mood of your audience.

Blue is more associated with calm and honesty, red with excitement and passion, green with hope and growth, orange with optimism and friendliness, yellow with enthusiasm and happiness… Many brands are very closely linked to their dominant color: blue Facebook, black Chanel, yellow Fnac, purple Milka, green Starbucks, red Coca Cola…

9 # Do not be only in emotion

Emotion is not enough. Difficult to be recognized for its expertise if your content does not bring any factual element. The rational is also part of your content marketing. Your potential buyers want tangible, rich and substantiated information on your offer. For example, your product tests can be funny and offbeat, and at the same time provide real rational arguments. It’s up to you to find the right dose of emotion and reason!

And you, how do you see the emotion in content marketing? Feel free to share your opinion in the comments 🙂

* source: Fuel Design
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