Corporate Eye

Using the Psychology of Consumer Behavior to Increase Marketing ROI

buy nowThe psychology of consumer behavior is one of my favorite subjects, so I was thrilled to stumble on an infographic from Help Scout (shown at the end of this article), which shares 10 ways to convert more customers using psychology.

Consumers are human beings, and human beings are innately influenced by their emotions and their psychological makeups. The psychology and philosophy of branding, marketing, needs, and actions are intrinsically linked. Ignore consumer psychology, and your results will be limited.

Take a look at the infographic below to see some amazing statistics from actual research studies as well as tips to help you increase the returns on your marketing investments by recognizing, adapting to, and addressing the psychology of your target consumers.

Some of the highlights include the following findings:

  • Adding a minimum to a call to action can significantly increase conversions.
  • Transparency matters, and admitting mistakes (even if your company isn’t at fault) can improve the perceived trustworthiness of your brand in the minds of consumers far more than pointing the finger at others does.
  • Without follow-up, there is a significant chance that consumers will ignore your messages.
  • Labeling consumers and making them feel like they’re part of a group (or the “enemy” of another group) will improve results.
  • Even very small surprises and rewards can have a positive effect on motivating a consumer to take action.
  • Consumers are more likely to have a strong relationship with a brand if they believe that the company shares similar values to their own.

Each of these findings shouldn’t be surprising, but marketers often forget consumer psychology and replace it with clever copy and trendy imagery. At the core of every marketing campaign that bears your brand’s name should be the psychology or your target consumer.

Why aren’t you getting the ROI you need from your marketing programs? Compare your outputs to your target audience’s psychological makeup. Do they match?

All purchase decisions have some element of psychological influence. Whether that influence happens when a consumer sees an ad or when that consumer is standing in the aisle of a store, it almost always happens. Don’t ignore it or undervalue it.

The world changes but human psychology keeps going. Don’t try to make your consumers adapt their psychologies to your brand. It won’t work. Instead, study them and develop buyer personas, complete with demographic, behavioral, and psychographic analyses. That’s how you use the psychology of consumer behavior to increase marketing ROI.


Image: Deb Collins

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.