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Why People Choose This And Not That

A lifetime ago, before adblockers and Netflix we sat through TV ads that suggested (often questionable) tangible benefits. Washing-up liquids gave us hands as soft as our face, and chocolate makers created treats we could eat between meals without ruining our appetite. These ads sold us a story about how we could be better versions of ourselves.

While the media morphed and moved on—as living, breathing, thinking and most importantly feeling, human beings our motivations haven’t changed. We might be more aware of how marketing manipulates, but what we want deep down is still the same. Any buying decision we make, from cars to food, and yes, even toilet paper is made because of our internal narrative.

“I drive a Prius because……”
“I never give my kids frozen food because…..”
“I buy this toilet paper because…..”

Of course, there are the rational explanations about savings, or harmful additives and greenhouse gases, but the most powerful reasons are intangible and not articulated.

“Because I’m a good mother, a responsible citizen or a caring person.”
These internal narratives are not openly shared, which makes it all the more important for marketers to understand them. We switched from cabs to Uber because we hate uncertainty and from Coke to bottled water, to reusable cups because doing that reinforced the story we wanted to believe about ourselves.

Every successful brand fills in the blanks of the customer’s internal narrative. Can you?

Our customers shop here/use us because…..

Image by CK

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