Marketing to the senses

In our real world we rely heavily on our 5 key senses , they influence our conscious and subconscious decisions moods and our behaviour.

For years department stores have played on all of these key elements in promotion and selling.

But what of the virtual world ?

On the web the sense of smell cannot be used, nor taste – these senses have to be evoked from our personal memories or by associations which we bring together in our mind to formulate this virtual picture.

Websites cannot translate the feeling of quality offered by touch, qualities such as weight and feel are impossible to translate through the click of a mouse. Of course these restrictions are not unique to the web, TV and radio have the same issue however the big difference is they are ‘ lean back ‘ mediums.

With the web and it’s interactivity there is an expectation to be provided with relevant and contextual information based on our enquiries, to be engaged, to have a dialouge. The relative infancy of the technbology means it’s full potential with regards to how and what information to present is still being realised.

Video improves sales

A recent survey from Vzaar found nearly 46% of internet shoppers have bought items online to find the item purchased was not exactly what they thought – the key hear is thought.

From a functional point of view this could be ‘ fit for the purpose ‘ – i.e a room freshener which does indeed freshen the room, however it fails to deliver the smell or effect only experience of the product could provide.

An interesting insight from the survey found over half the respondents said seeing a video would make them more likely to buy a product.

This makes a lot of sense, there are many feature comparison sites on the web but how do you convey a products actual size, look and functions in a manner over the web which we can relate – a simple picture is not enough.

Recognising the importance of video Dixons the UK electronics retailer have just collated all of their demonstrations ( it has been producing these for over a year ) into one place within their customer website.

If this were to be coupled with independent reviews from outside the groups website this could make for a great proposition to differentiate itself from it’s competitors.

key survey facts
  • Six out of ten believe sites using video are more professional
  • Half of all shoppers say seeing a video makes them more likely to buy
  • Four out of ten shoppers have more trust in a site that uses video

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