You probably know it. You're scrolling through your Instagram feed without paying too much attention. You hand out some quick likes to friends; you don't notice the sponsored posts. Until suddenly one comes along that jumps out. It has your attention. Why exactly? You probably don't even know. But something triggered you. Chances are this was a powerful piece of neuromarketing, hitting you in your reptilian brain. Find out what exactly this is and how you can use neuromarketing in your ads yourself in this article.
We make choices unconsciously
We humans think we are rational beings who make choices based on common sense and logical thinking. Well, think again (or yes, again...). As much as 95% of our choices we make unconsciously, from our reptilian brain. This is the oldest part of our brain and takes care of basic survival needs. Think of your circulatory system, breathing and our fight-or-flight instincts.
Reptilian brain reviews ads
This reptilian brain is also the brain that judges ads, and quickly too. Already within 0.3 seconds we know whether an ad appeals to us and whether we want something from it. Only 7 seconds later our human brain comes into action, if an ad has passed the pre-selection. In many cases, we then use this human brain only to justify our reptilian brain's choice.
Reptilian brain is the decision maker
So our reptilian brain is the decision-maker and does so in a split second. This seems rather thoughtless, and that is just as well. Every day we see some 1,500 marketing statements. If we were to consciously review all of them, we wouldn't get anywhere else. Let alone with all the other choices you make in a day.
So how can this reptilian brain make a choice so quickly? Thanks to neuroscience research, we know this better and better. For instance, brain scanning techniques such as MRIs and EEGs measure brain activity. This allows us to know which brain activity takes place where in the brain. From these studies come findings that are also applied in marketing. That is what we neuromarketing mention.
The brain responds to six specific stimuli
We know that our reptilian brain's goal is to make you survive, and therefore only pays attention to a few things. It does not think or store anything, it reacts instinctively and automatically. It is like the wild beast living inside you with only one mission: survival.
Neuromarketing research has tested how our brains respond to certain stimuli, including with eye tracking techniques. What turns out? There are only six very specific stimuli that the reptilian brain responds to. So make sure you master these and incorporate them into your ads, then your potential guests can't ignore them.
We give you 6 tips to use these incentives as smartly as possible in your marketing.
Neuromarketing tip 1: Focus on your guest
First of all: the reptilian brain is selfish. It thinks only of itself and has no empathy for anything not directly related to its own well-being. After all, it is there to make you survive, not the neighbour. What can you do with this as an advertiser?
Let the message 100% be about your guest. Not about yourself or your company. Your guest wants to hear what your hotel or restaurant can do for them. Therefore, address your guest as you and your (or you and your) and write from the benefit for your guest. So not: 'We have new comfortable mattresses on all our hotel beds!', but 'Feel reborn after a good night's sleep on our most comfortable beds ever'.
Neuromarketing tip 2: Use contrast
A second incentive lies in clear contrasts. This is because it allows you to make a risk-free choice more quickly. Think of contrasts such as dangerous or safe, with or without, fast or slow. Without a clear contrast, the reptilian brain gets confused. It has to start thinking and does not like that. Chances are it won't respond at all!
Therefore: use contrasts and show the difference of your intervention. A good example are before and after photos. But also consider visual contrasts, in colour and shape. Like the well-known call to action button in contrasting colour.
Neuromarketing tip 3: Pay attention to recognisability and tangibility
In addition, the reptilian brain does not like change. It is constantly looking for what is familiar, recognisable and as tangible as possible. This too helps in making quick decisions about something.
So make your information as recognisable and tangible as possible. For instance, it works for web shops to show 360-degree photos and show clothes on a model, instead of on a mannequin. This allows your brain to better imagine a particular product.
In the hospitality industry, it can be smart to use a recognisable image, for example a nice beer on your cosy terrace. A guest knows what this beer tastes like. Thanks to a good picture where you can see the carbon dioxide bubbling, he can almost taste it and feel the foam layer! If that doesn't give positive incentives...
Neuromarketing tip 4: Clear beginning and end
With all these stimuli, the brain is constantly looking for a way to conserve energy. This is why the beginning and end of something is often better remembered than the middle part. Think of the first and last sip of the beer mentioned above.
In an advertisement, make use of this by placing the most important information at the beginning and end, or repeating it at the end.
Neuromarketing tip 5: Looking at pictures helps
Also, the reptilian brain is visually oriented. We make decisions based mainly on what we see. Here, our newer human brain relies on our reptilian brain. For example, we can react to something that looks like a snake even before we have taken the time to check if it really is a snake.
In ads, it is therefore also smart to use visual stimuli. In doing so, two things seem to work particularly well: images of people and of food. Great to work with as a hospitality business!
Neuromarketing tip 6: Evoke emotions
Finally, the reptilian brain responds to emotions. These cause a chemical reaction in the brain and directly affect the way you process and remember information. Here, you want to evoke a positive emotion in the recipient of your ad.
How do you do this? Again, we take the beer example. With people smiling, this evokes positive emotions. Further, think of positive emotions in your texts, like puns and jokes. Something simple like emojis can also help, as long as it doesn't become overkill.
Advertising in the brain
Advertising in the brain is therefore about processing the above six stimuli in such a way that the reptilian brain is triggered the way you want it to be. This will make your ads a lot more effective!
Want to know more about neuromarketing in ads?
Even if you know the incentives, brain-level advertising can be quite a brainteaser. The Fully Bookers help you with this. Our team of experts looks at what works best for your business and specific situation. We will then give you tips and advice, or we can take over advertising completely so that you do not have to worry about it yourself. Just as you wish.