Emotional Marketing and Consumer Purchasing Decisions: A Case Study of Apple
Organizations engage in marketing to promote their products and attract large markets. A company that fails to conduct enough marketing does not live to the expectations of its owners. In the United States, marketing strategies continue to change each day due to changes in the society. The marketing mechanisms that made ancient companies great might not be applicable in today’s scenario. In Marketing, communication with the targeted population holds the key to convince people about the product. Emotional branding enables marketers to build brands that appeal to customers through triggering emotional aspirations, state, and needs. Over time, the marketing strategy leads to an emotional response that convinces the consumer to purchase the item. Since its inception, Apple Inc. perfected the art of emotional marketing to attract more customers to buy Apple products. Due to the success of Apple Inc., it is important to evaluate the impact of emotional marketing on consumer purchasing decisions.
Apple Inc. started operations in 1976 in California. The founders of the company included Ronald Wayne, Steve Jobs, and Steve Wozniak. Initially, the company sold personal computers under the brand Apple. Business became more profitable making the founders hire designers and engineers to build a production line. The products became household names leading to a wide acclaim, for Apple product. Despite the power struggles between the founders, the company continued to grow increasing its market share. However, Apple experienced a sharp decrease in sales due to the high price tag of its products. Competitors such as Microsoft and Hewlett Packard provided consumers with cheaper alternatives, which had similar or near similar capabilities. With the adoption of new technologies due to aggressive research and development practices by Apple, the company started to grow again as it recorded tremendous growth in sales. The company CEO Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone, which contributed significantly to sales, recorded ever since. By 2015, Apple occupied position one among all the international information technology companies due to huge revenues. Additionally, only Samsung surpassed Apple in the number of mobile phones manufactured.
Emotional Marketing and Consumer Purchasing Decisions: A Case Study of Apple
Among the factors that contributed to the growth of Apple from a small startup to become a market leader in research, manufacture, and sale of information technology companies includes marketing. The company engages in one of the most aggressive marketing strategy ever used by companies. Large amounts of the company’s fortunes end up in the pockets of marketing firms in order to maintain relevance in the market. Additionally, the company engages in online marketing programs using websites and application such as I-tunes to sensitize people about Apple products.
One of the most appealing marketing strategies that enable Apple to compete with its rivals includes the use of emotional marketing. Apple marketers use this strategy to convince consumers to purchase their products and remain loyal by studying their behaviors (Zoeller, 2017). The services that customers encounter become personal at some points to boost company- customer relations. For instance, the customers may be greeted as they enter the Apple store with statements such as, “What would you want to do on this lovely day?” Such statements differ from those made by most companies whereby clients respond to questions such as, “How may I help you.” The second statement may not have an emotional impact on a customer like the first one. Whenever the consumers find such services, emotions may be triggered influencing them to buy Apple products as well as convincing their friends to purchase the products.
The rationale of the Study
The study involves the study of emotional marketing on the purchase decisions of customers. All organizations understand the importance of maintaining consumer loyalty as well as convincing more people to buy their products. The consumers enable the companies to sell more products, which in turn increases the revenues collected. Additionally, more customers mean that the organization increases production thereby employing more people and promoting its brand. The more customers an organization gets also translate to more innovation, due to the differences in preferences amongst people. For instance, during the infant stages of Apple Inc., the company focused on computers only in a bid to create a niche for themselves. However, with increased production and market penetration, the company required engaging in more research and development to manufacturing better goods that fulfilled the desires of the consumers. The iPhone and iPad met the qualities of a device that most consumers wanted. As a result, the two products continue to rake in billions of dollars annually for Apple.
Emotional marketing involves the use of innovative techniques to convince a customer to choose a product over another. Studies show that more than 80% of people buy goods through impulse buying (van Overveld 2016, p. 41). Most of these people decide to buy the commodity after their brains are triggered, by a feature about the product as well as emotional advertisements. For instance, a company may decide to offer steep discounts to its customers for selected goods. In such a scenario, a person with no intention of purchasing a product may end up buying the item in order to benefit from the unprecedented discount. In this case, the psychology of the person is affected triggering him to engage in an activity not planned for. For the company, a new customer will be attracted to buy the commodity, whereas the customer will own a product at a much lower price than anticipated. Price discounts trigger the purchase decisions of millions of people who yearn for benefits from low prices. The number of commodities sold during the festive season’s discounts and Black Friday offers surpasses the commodities sold during other days.
A second means of conducting emotional marketing involves storytelling. During this moment, the marketers compose stories that try to encourage the customers to purchase the goods. The stories told normally engage the consumer’s subconsciousness (Smilovitz, 2018). Furthermore, whenever the subconsciousness of a person gets engaged, an emotional connection is created. For companies such as Apple, the stories make people connect with the brand more intimately. Storytelling normally increases dopamine in the brain, which in turn stimulates the memory (Smilovitz, 2018). The story enhances the listener’s memory to accommodate the story. As a result, the person sees some sense in the story resulting in a psychological impact that makes the targeted person remember and associate with the brand advertised. The moment the person sees the brand, the story stored in the brain will always crop up affecting the purchase decisions.
Information technology firms such as Apple use storytelling effectively to convince buyers about the advantages of buying their products. For instance, the present generation of people cannot live without a mobile phone. The gadget enables them to communicate and attend to many daily activities. Above all, smartphones such as iPhones allow the users to access internet resources such as emails while at the same time performing other activities. A touching story about how a person experiences communication difficulties until he gets hold of an iPhone may result in consumers being, emotionally attached to the product. As a result, more people end up buying Apple products.
Modern day social proof also enables the successful implementation of emotional marketing. This method involves the use of simple word-of-mouth techniques to convince buyers. These words originate from customers who might have used the products initially. The technique relies on the recommendations from users (Smilovitz, 2018). For instance, a user might use some simple but powerful words such as “This is the best product that I have ever used” or “Simple but very powerful device.” The two statements provide an honest opinion or judgment from a consumer. In such a circumstance, other customers may get convinced about the product under description, due to positive remarks from prior users. These messages broadcast in both print and broadcast media to reach as many people as possible. During the same moment, the company’s logo and associated brand appear alongside to enable the consumers to connect between the product and the testimonials broadcasted.
Modern technologies such as websites enable companies to utilize modern day social proof more efficiently. Apple Inc. provides its customers with online sites whereby they write down their views about a product. The customers write down product reviews as well as identify the areas that need improvement. When buying electronics such as phones and computers, most people result in enquiring the viability of the devices from customer product reviews. In case the reviews show negativity about the product, few people end up buying it. The customer reviews also act as a counter to the reviews made by the company. Obviously, all companies give positive reviews about their products, which make it necessary to engage other stakeholders. From this analysis, it is prudent to conclude that the social proof element of emotional advertising boots the credibility of a product and company due to other people’s validation.
Additionally, emotional marketing may be achieved using technology that triggers the mind of a customer. Despite the fact that technology cannot completely connect emotionally with people, it triggers some form of response by customers. Artificial Intelligence by technology firms mimics the emotions of humans (Smilovitz, 2018). Some of these soft wares focus on retention of customers in a company through offering highly personalized services to appease them. For instance, retail companies such as Wal-Mart award points to customers who visit their outlets. The technology used gathers the data about the purchasing history of the customer over a period, translating it into points. After attaining a certain number of points, the companies reward the consumers with coupons as well as other gifts. Therefore, a customer will always visit the company to purchase supplies due to the points and benefits likely to occur. This method increases customer base and loyalty.
The use of emotional marketing by companies such as Apple raises many issues due to the effects that it has on consumers and companies. Initially, most marketers used benefit driven advertisement approaches to compel customers to buy their products. Despite the success that this approach had on sales, companies still operated below their potential. Additionally, growth in economies led to the increase in purchasing powers of people thereby increasing the sizes of the available market. Therefore, advertisers required to engage in more innovative ways to attract more customers at the same time retaining the old ones. As earlier indicated, the increase in market required Apple Inc. to define new ways of wooing the customers. Larger markets meant that market diversity mattered a lot. The methods of advertisements in the United States did not automatically succeed in South America or Asia. Therefore, the firms required re-evaluating advertisement strategies to reflect the new demands.
In addition, increase in competition requires the change in advertisement strategies. This enables the company to wade through competitors. Therefore, the introduction of emotional marketing came into play. An emotion due to the manner in which marketing takes place inspires customers to buy a product. This leads to the establishment of long-lasting loyalty, boosting sales and revenues. It is crucial for people to understand the manner in which companies execute emotional marketing due to the impact on the market. From the point of view aired by Seth Godin’s, successful advertisers do not concentrate on benefits and features of a product. Rather, they require considering the use of stories to convince customers to believe in the products they sell (Scott Luther, 2006). Learning more about the issue enables the learners to understand how far and often marketing evolves. The marketers of ancient times would find it different if they came back to life. The rules of marketing continue to change as the society evolves from one phase to another. Therefore, it is essential for marketers to understand what to expect from the markets.
Many people might wonder why emotional marketing requires evaluation now. This is despite being a concept that has gradually grown over the last few decades. To answer that, it is important to appreciate the social changes that took place during the same period. The political, economic and social elements of the societies change occasionally. For instance, the United States changed considerably in the past fifty years. People no longer fight for political inclusivity; instead, they advocate for economic inclusiveness and equal treatment by institutions. Apple Inc. also changed from a technology firm that worked entirely in the US, to an international brand that supplied equipment to many countries in the world. Therefore, the advertisement strategies utilized required more innovation. Emotional marketing filled the gap by focusing on the psychological aspect of humans to trigger purchase decisions. Additionally, the adoption of technology by organizations and the people require serious consideration due to the impact of technology on marketing. Therefore, the best moment to evaluate emotional marketing strategies is now, as the world continues to adopt new technologies and evolve further.
Research requires researchers to conduct their studies in a particular manner in order to achieve the objectives of the study. Therefore, concrete measures and methods to accomplish the task are required. First, the researchers need to collect the required data depending on the nature and aims of the study. In this case, the research topic entails studying a current issue that affects marketing. Therefore, it is important to collect data from real companies to authenticate the findings. For instance, focusing on emotional marketing strategies by Apple Inc. may provide accurate data for the research. After identifying the data sources, collection mechanisms that meet the needs of the study is crucial. For this study, the researchers require conducting field and desktop data collection practices. Under the field research, interviewees selected from selected companies require filling questioners. Alternatively, some of the selected interviewees will answer oral questions as the data collectors note them down. The desktop research requires the study of literary materials from different writers. These materials will enable the researchers to identify the history and implementation of emotional marketing over many years. Additionally, the book and journals provide more insight into the issues by providing materials to compare with during the study.
Research requires having set deadlines in order to accomplish. The deadlines enable the division of resources such as time to perform each task professionally. In this case, the researcher requires two months to complete. During this period, data collection and recording will require one month to enable collection of quality information. The researchers require another two weeks to compile and analyze the data to make the correct conclusions. Finally, the last two weeks will ensure that the researchers proofread their work to identify and correct any mistake and inconsistency that appears. Additionally, the research will be published during the last two days to finish the project entirely.
Marketing strategies determine the success of selling a product. Whenever the marketers engage in strategies that fail to attract customers, the company cannot survive due to competition. Therefore, it is important to innovate and employ advertisement mechanisms that enable a product to sell. Emotional marketing provides one of the most appropriate means of advertising. Through this method, marketers engage with consumers psychologically triggering them to purchase their product. The method incorporates various elements such as technology, human’s perception, and current trends. These trends affect the daily lives of most people, making it essential for marketers to evaluate them. Moreover, these elements enable emotional marketing to appeal to many customers, which in turn convinces them to buy a product.
Scott Luther, T. (2006). History of Emotional Branding | Travis Luther | Luther Media | Luther Media. [online] Luthermedia.com. Available at: http://www.luthermedia.com/emotional-branding / [Accessed 11 Apr. 2018].
Smilovitz, S. (2018). Emotional Marketing Examples Scientifically Proven To Sway Buyers. [online] Instapage.com. Available at: https://instapage.com/blog/emotional-marketing/ [Accessed 11 Apr. 2018].
Van Overveld, M., 2016. Emotion regulation can be costly. A study on the effects of emotion regulation strategies on impulsive purchases in consumers.
Zoeller, S. (2017). How Apple Uses Consumer Behavior Marketing to Win – Stephen Zoeller’s Marketing Blog. [online] Stephen Zoeller’s Marketing Blog. Available at: http://www.stephenzoeller.com/apple-consumer-behavior-marketing/ [Accessed 11 Apr. 2018].
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