Brand Sense | Martin Lindstrom

Summary of: Brand Sense: Sensory Secrets Behind the Stuff We Buy
By: Martin Lindstrom


Prepare to dive into the world of sensory branding as revealed in Martin Lindstrom’s book, ‘Brand Sense: Sensory Secrets Behind the Stuff We Buy’. In this summary, you’ll explore the evolution of branding techniques and discover how future brands will need to resonate with all five senses to gain consumer attention. Understand how different senses contribute to the brand experience and how companies have successfully incorporated sensory stimuli to forge stronger brand associations. By the end, you’ll grasp the significance of creating a holistic selling proposition by building strong synergies between a brand and related sensory stimuli.

The Evolution of Branding

Branding is evolving towards stronger consumer involvement and emotional connections through sensory experiences. In the past, the focus was on the Unique Selling Proposition, which emphasized product differences. Brand emphasis regained in the 1960s and evolved into emotional connections and power over products in the 1990s. With the help of technology, the trend towards deeper customer involvement continues through the Holistic Selling Proposition, which leverages the senses and emotions to expand branding. As branding continues to evolve, customer ownership and control will play a larger role in the future.

The Power of Sensory Branding

In today’s world where the market is flooded with new products, standing out from the competition is becoming increasingly difficult. Advertisers have realized the importance of stimulating more than just sight and sound. The power of taste, smell, and touch is often underestimated in building brand loyalty. This summary presents the essential points of a book that explores the role of sensory branding in creating a more effective and memorable brand experience.

Advertising has always aimed to capture people’s attention and create a lasting impression. However, with an ever-increasing number of products and services, making a brand stand out has become more challenging. Advertisers are turning to a multi-sensory approach to capture all five senses and provoke reflexive behavior. The use of aromas, feelings, and tastes combined with sight and sound creates an innumerable number of possibilities. Companies that implement a sensory branding approach see stronger brand loyalty and differentiation compared to competitors.

The sense of smell is a powerful tool in creating a memorable brand experience. Fewer than 3% of Fortune 1000 companies have used odor in a brand campaign, although it’s considered 10,000 times more effective than taste. Smell is closely linked to memory, and people can associate smells with particular emotions or experiences. Singapore Airlines uses a patented aroma to create a distinctive scent in its cabins, which enhances the flying experience and leaves a lasting memory.

Sound is another critical sense in creating a brand experience as it evokes powerful associations and emotions. Kellogg’s patented the sound of someone eating its cereals, and DaimlerChrysler created a whole department dedicated to the sound of their car doors. However, only 4% of Fortune 500 companies use sound significantly in their branding. Companies that use sound as part of their branding can forge a stronger emotional connection with their customers, enhancing their brand loyalty.

Sight plays an essential role in creating a brand experience, although it’s the least powerful sense in terms of creating loyalty. However, visual elements such as color and shape can generate powerful connotations. Tiffany’s robin’s egg blue or the Absolut vodka bottle are iconic examples. Coca-Cola changed Santa Claus’s traditional green outfit to red, establishing a strong visual link to their brand. While shapes and colors are essential in creating corporate branding, companies that incorporate all five senses effectively have a better chance of creating a more memorable brand experience.

Taste and smell are the most powerful senses in creating loyalty. Coca-Cola drinkers like the soda’s “bite,” while Pepsi drinkers prefer theirs’ “light crisp taste.” However, taste and smell are closely linked. People taste and smell at the same time and often compare the two. Taste and smell can evoke powerful emotional responses, and when used correctly in branding, a product can differentiate itself from its competitors and create a more memorable brand experience.

Touch, the body’s largest organ, is another important sense in creating a brand experience. Touch can play a key role in making physical learning more effective. When consumers can touch a product physically, they can better assess its quality. Bang & Olufsen has incorporated sensations of weight and smoothness into the design of their remote controls to create a more memorable brand experience. Smart implementation of tactile features can enhance brand loyalty and create a more lasting impression.

When designing a brand, it’s important to create a “sensogram” to identify each product’s image, distinctness, and perceived consistency. With sensory branding, companies can create a more effective and memorable brand experience. Brands that implement the holistic sensory branding approach include Singapore Airlines, Apple, Disney, Mercedes-Benz, Marlboro, Tiffany, Louis Vuitton, Bang & Olufsen, and Coke. Advertisers need to move away from traditional sight and sound approaches if they want to make a lasting impression in today’s competitive market.

To conclude, sensory branding is a necessity when creating a memorable and effective brand experience. With millions of TV commercials watched by the average 65-year-old, and print media experiencing a decline in circulation, creating a multisensory brand experience will become increasingly important. Companies that incorporate all five senses and create a “sensogram” have a stronger chance of creating an effective brand experience, which can lead to more loyal customers and better differentiation from competitors.

Sensory Branding: A Powerful Tool for Marketers

Sensory marketing can be a powerful tool for marketers to stimulate consumer response and loyalty through branding that engages multiple senses. This strategy involves creating an emotional attachment and positive experiences through sensory stimulation and consistent sensory touchpoints. Companies can achieve this by leveraging existing sensory points, using sensory consistency to foster customer loyalty, and building a distinctive positive sensory experience in a customer’s mind. Some examples of successful sensory branding include Disney and Victoria’s Secret’s use of music to set a mood, Heinz’s thick glass ketchup bottle to connote quality, and Ferrari’s use of key sensory branding points on its electronics. Sensory branding can also be used to build and protect a company’s trademark identity, create an environment for brand extensions, and meet customer expectations. By incorporating sensory elements into their branding strategies, marketers can evoke positive emotions and create a lasting connection with consumers.

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