By Rieva Lesonsky
Most purchasing decisions are emotionally driven, although determining which emotion results in an actual sale is not always easy to figure out. Small businesses have the inherent advantage of making customers feel good about spending their dollars in local, smaller establishments instead of at giant chains. But there are several other emotions you can tap into to get shoppers to notice and patronize your business. Here are three:
1. Holiday emotions: The holidays are big business,and if you haven’t already started your holiday marketing plans, get a move on! Kmart recently made waves with advertising that taps into consumers’ fears of getting caught short-handed without the “hot” gift, to avoid the last-minute holiday rush, and to get ahead of the game. You too can tap into all of these emotions, but as a small business owner you can also promote how much more personalized an experience you can offer during the mad holiday rush. Set out a try of cookies, play holiday music, or provide tea and cider to your customers so your store can be a place of respite, standing apart from the frenzy of the big stores.
2. Gratitude: If you can play up the emotions of gratitude and love, you can prompt customers to spend a little more than they would normally when shopping for the special people in their lives. Of course, there are the obvious times, such as Father’s Day and Mother’s Day gifts, but what about thanking a special teacher or rewarding a child for a job done well? Consider highlighting bonding and gratitude in your marketing by including images of all types of people, since you never know what image will resonate with someone looking for a special purchase.
3. Anger: How frustrated do you get when something you own doesn’t work or a service falls short? You can tap into the customer’s anger to convince them it’s time to replace or upgrade a certain item like an appliance or a tool, or to switch service providers. For example, if you sell appliances, play up the frustration of dealing with an appliance that always breaks down, and the relief customers will feel when they finally get rid of that old piece of junk and buy a new appliance from you. Think about what frustrates you, and likely a customer has felt the same way.
Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow her on Google+ and Twitter.com/Rieva and visit her website, SmallBizDaily.com, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports