Moreover, they are magnifiers. Therefore, an appropriate trigger elicits substantial, immediate and, often, sustainable responses.
This is a fundamental key to recognise and to deploy when price alone is not the answer.
Interestingly, the intensity of emotional reactions to actual, probable or possible loss is typically far greater than the intensity of the joy of gain. That fact alone provides a great insight into the motivations and processes of purchase decisions.
Thus, the orientation of all marketing communication needs to be sensitive to the perspective in which messages will be received and actioned.
Key audiences need to be identified, defined and targeted. Specific, concise messages must be structured, purchase criteria outlined and, both objectives and outcomes enunciated.
The prospect of actual loss, or the possibility of missing out, are fundamental stimulants for action. All that is needed by the marketer is the channelling of those forces to the desirable outcomes.
Reinforcing the seemingly innate tendency towards the negative is the ability and inclination of respondents to market research surveys to provide negative-orientated answers.
Loss turns to profit when the communication is artfully structured, delivered, supported and followed through.
Barry Urquhart runs Marketing Focus and is a business strategist, consumer behaviour analyst and keynote speaker. He can be contacted at Urquhart@marketingfocus.net.au or on 0419 835 555.
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