When consumers interact with a brand, there is an emotional consequence. Brand failure, even in the most insignificant categories, can cause frustration, anger, even embarrassment. Brand success can lift spirits and turn a bad day around. What’s interesting is these emotional consequences are often not just directed at the brand, but at the user. Ever felt like a sucker for buying a brand? Ever felt more confident about yourself when using a brand?
As a brand builder, the goal is to marry your brand to a positive emotional experience that enhances the user’s day and their self opinion. In short, interaction with this brand makes me feel ______. So when I want to feel that way, I reach for the brand. This is the essence of the emotional benefit.
Unlike with functional benefits, it is often much easier to differentiate your brand with its emotional benefit. When I was a boy decades ago (ouch), Nike and Adidas were functionally marketed brands with little differentiation. Nike figured out the emotional benefit of running (and fitness in general) to its users, and the rest is history.
In the coming posts, we will unpack emotional benefit development. While functional benefit remains precedent to emotional benefit in my opinion, it’s the MARKETER that is typically the author of emotional benefit strategy. Net, this is where we earn our keep in brand construction.