There is always something to compare in advertising. Content vs context, data vs creativity, technology vs humanity. All the conversations start off with one question: who will win? Yet in every seminar and workshop I’ve attended and every article I’ve read, we all reach the same conclusion: there are no winners.
The truth is, they are all cornerstones of the advertising world we work (and live) in, working together to enhance and evolve our output.
Content and context work best in tandem.
Technology like machine learning and AI might take easily automated tasks away from us, but it opens up doors we couldn’t reach before.
Data doesn’t remove creativity but enhances it, be that through relevance, delivery, or the critical insight into a brand and consumer from which the creative idea evolves.
However, there is one area that could do with a little bit more exploring. Emotion and logic play different roles in different purchases, but it’s widely regarded that any given purchase is 30% driven by logic, our conscious thought, and 70% by emotion, our subconscious.
When considering a people carrier, it’s a decision based predominantly on logic: you may be expecting a new addition to the family and want a safe and comfortable method of transport. The decision to purchase a Ferrari on the other hand will be deep-rooted in emotion: brand affinity, social status, etc. This is overgeneralising and reductive of course (I’m sure there are those who have made impassioned arguments as to why a Ferrari California is a completely logical purchase), but understanding the mind-set and rationale behind a purchase is critical in developing creative.
Our Client Partner (Entertainment, Media, Retail & Technology) Warren Mills recently looked at McKinsey’s Loyalty Loop from a retail perspective to understand consumer behaviour at each stage of the purchase cycle (awareness, consideration, intent, purchase and loyalty). We wanted to take this a step further to look beyond what consumers are doing at each stage to what they’re thinking and feeling too.
Naturally, this varies within sectors, products and brands, but we discovered that the balance between emotion and logic varied at each of these stages. At the awareness stage, we tend to have a set of brands in mind. You know what you want from a people carrier: a bigger, more comfortable and more fuel efficient car. What triggers someone from the awareness stage into the consideration stage could be that new addition to the family, resulting in emotional reasoning stepping up. Factors like car safety, on-board entertainment and Euro NCAP rating will play a role at this stage, messages that could land more of an impact if displayed emotively (rather than just listing features).
The awareness stage for a Ferrari will be full of emotion, passion and excitement. When online and offline behaviour network events signal they’ve been triggered into the consideration stage, the creative needs to become more logical with prices, specifications and finance deals, and personalisation is key.
But this isn’t to say that any one stage, brand, product or sector is inherently emotional or logical, more that we have unique emotional and logical spikes along the purchase journey that shouldn’t be ignored. While we recognise each campaign is unique, we’ve pulled together a guide using insight from our campaigns to showcase what we’ve learned and discovered along the way about how best to shape creative.
Yet the creative is just one part of the story. We’ve already clarified that data plays an equally important role in the creative process. Mobile data is an invaluable tool in understanding where someone is in the purchase journey, but only in overlaying enough data points can you be confident enough to reach them at that stage or risk not being able to leverage that connection, logical or emotional, with the consumer at the right moment. Frequent visits to general motoring websites and forums are key triggers into the consideration stage, while visits to finance sites and calls and visits to dealerships are clear indicators of the intent stage.
In The Art and Science of Mobile Engagement, we explore the emotional and logical spikes within a range of sectors, as well as the data points and network events used to identify when a user falls into one of these areas. This helps us to humanise the data, shape dynamic creative and deliver a campaign that resonates with the user. After all, data allows us to understand the customer’s mindset, but it’s creativity that lets us tap into their emotions.
To see The Art and Science of Mobile Engagement in full, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.