Using Digital Feedback for Better Sensory Branding

Posted by Greg Keating on Oct 6, 2016 9:10:00 AM

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Sensory branding is a category of marketing that appeals to each of the five senses in relation to the brand. It uses sight, sound, smell, taste and touch to relate with customers on an emotional level. Brands can build emotional links in a customer’s mind by appealing to their senses. That’s why a multi-sensory brand experience can engender specific beliefs, thoughts and attitudes to illustrate a brand image in the consumer’s mind.

How important is this experience to effective and memorable branding? Branding Strategy Insider sums it up like this: “Product experience is the ultimate determinant of brand loyalty. Design of that experience is one of the few areas where creativity can still provide a tangible and sustainable competitive edge.”

Through sensory branding, brands relate to the customer in a much more intimate way than with mass marketing. That’s why it’s a technique that does what traditional forms of advertising are unable to do. The sensory marketing approach fills in the gaps of traditional marketing, which is too straightforward. Classic marketing is based on the idea that the customer is logical, and that their behavior is broke up in distinct, reasoned steps, according to the offer, the competition and the answer to their needs.

In comparison, sensory marketing integrates the experiences lived by the consumers, and their feelings, into the procedure. This has a variety of dimensions that are not addressed by traditional marketing, the goal of which is to create the appeal of the products with their design and their packaging, and then to exhibit them in a commercial environment and make them attractive. There, the consumer is behaving according to coercion and emotions, more than reason.

Traditional advertisers mostly appeal to sight and sound, as does almost all brand communication; however, in many cases sound and smell are more effective than sight when branding a product. Furthermore, visual images are more distinctive when matched with a second sense. Sensory branding is used to create an ambiance that encourages the customer to purchase products and can be influenced by sight, sound, touch, taste and smell.

Why is Feedback Important?

Owners of successful brands understand that no matter how busy they get, it's essential to take the time to get customer feedback. Perceiving what your customers think about your products and brand will not only help you increase quality, but will also give you insights into what new products your customers want so you can branch out your offerings. Understanding what you're doing right also lets you make smart decisions about where to center your efforts, and it may even give you material for marketing. Plus, your customers will be grateful for having ways to communicate with you.

How to Collect Digital Feedback

When you collect responses from your customers consistently, you’ll know if you’re building your brand in the right direction. So experiment with the methods listed below and find the right combination for your brand. It is important to note that as soon as you find a process for collecting high-quality feedback from your customers on a regular basis, you should make it a standard practice.

While getting feedback used to be restricted to a letter in the mail or form on your website, there are now myriad low-cost approaches to getting consumer input.

You’ll want to start with these methods:

  1.     Digital Surveys
  2.     Social Media Listening
  3.     Store Intercepts
  4.     Consumer Relations information
  5.     Usability tests

When to Make Changes Based on Feedback

If you have any degree of success with your brand or product, you’ll quickly be inundated with feedback. Between the emails, surveys, and user tests, you’ll likely have more material than you can use. But remember some of the suggestions you receive will be obscure or irrelevant.

So, when you’re filtering through all this information, make sure you’re looking for trends. Let’s say that you see an issue come up several times over the course of time with a number of different customers that is feedback that you want to act on. Reach out to these people, get a deep appreciation of what they want, and then create a sensory-centric solution and make it happen. Even if it’s a small improvement, your product will be better and you’ll have happier customers.

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