Three Neuromarketing Techniques for More Accurate Marketing

By Sentient Decision Science, Inc.
March 7, 2017
At the most recent IIeX event, 19 partner corporations—including Facebook, Instagram, and Red Bull—sought meetings with insights suppliers from 26 different client groups. Partners had their pick of a variety of offerings, from VR to big data to behavioral economics.
The category that pulled in the most interest? Nonconscious.
Another event, HubSpot’s INBOUND marketing conference, offered at least three sessions on the 2016 agenda with “neuroscience” in the title.
Why neuroscience, when there is no shortage of traditional market research techniques available? Because marketers cannot make a living only knowing what people do and don’t buy, they need to better understand why.
And to most companies, it’s become apparent that understanding the “why” requires measuring both the emotional and rational outcomes of brain processing.
Consumers  should not be asked to self-report what they’re going to do and why they’re going to do it if they don’t have conscious access to the answer. The data we get out of those questions will be inaccurate.
Relying on reported survey responses alone isn’t good enough anymore. The good news is that you can easily add any of these three neuromarketing techniques to your research for better, more accurate marketing in 2017.

Implicit Association Testing (IAT)

What It Is: Implicit association testing reveals the implicit (nonconscious) associations between concepts. The test measures how easily participants can sort words or images into categories each time they are “primed,” or exposed to a stimulus (such as a brand logo or package).
Why It Works: When you’re primed with an image or a word or a sound or a scent, the associations you have with that stimulus become more accessible and improve your mental processing ability–even if those associations are emotional or intangible. Essentially, the test reveals the strength of your associations by measuring how each prime impacts your mental processing speed and accuracy.
Implicit association tests can measure emotional associations to products, services, and brands that consumers either can’t or won’t express. Companies can even use creative assets—such as lighting, background color, angles, and variance— as primes. The resulting data can be combined with traditional survey answers to represent both emotion and reason for a decision-making model provides that provides incredibly accurate forecasts.


What It Is: Eye-tracking provides insight on which marketing communication elements draw visual attention.
Why It Works: This technology not only helps to identify whether specific elements of ads, concepts, or packages attract attention, but also illustrates the dynamics of visual processing that influence consumer decision making. Heat maps reveal the percentage of people who notice each of the key advertisement elements, as well as the frequency and duration of gaze on each element.
Implementing eye-tracking in a research lab can produce precise, moment-by-moment data on the elements that capture consumer attention. Even better, these measures can now be reliably implemented in an online testing environment (albeit with less precision) to make using eye-tracking in ad testing extremely accessible and efficient.


What It Is: Biometrics are tools that measure the body’s physical responses to stimuli.
Why It Works: Biometrics can reveal unconscious responses to marketing efforts, such as ads, by measuring heart-rate variability, skin conductance response, respiration, and other natural body processes. The data can show how people react, on a physiological level, to advertising, packaging, and new product concept testing.
Quantifying emotional arousal can give remarkable insight into the behavioral drivers of what people are drawn to, click on, and purchase. When combined with self-reported consumer data, these insights can provide researchers with a comprehensive picture of how emotions line up with decisions. The story told can help companies change an improve their ad campaigns, websites, and products.
Interested in learning more about how these or other neuromarketing technique can elevate your business in 2017? Request a consultation today.




For more information about Sentient Decision Science and our groundbreaking research please contact us.