The main goal of any marketing strategy is based on getting the consumer to "learn" what the brand wants to communicate. Therefore, learning is achieved when the consumer chooses the brand "learned" among a variety of options. How to ensure that the brand achieved the ending goal of translating consumer learning into effective purchase?
All the knowledge stored in the brain was once learned, either consciously or unconsciously. With or without meaning, we assimilate stimulus around us and transfer it to learned information, then we use when the situation requires to.
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Just as we learn to speak, read and write, it is also possible that the customers learn about the core values of a brand, and if these values are according to their identity, eventually such learning will become a positive purchase decision. The brain can embrace such learning processes unconsciously (implicit) or consciously (explicit).
Unconscious or implicit learning requires no motivation of the learner. Moreover, it is not necessary to approve receiving the knowledge. This form of knowledge has several advantages compared to the explicit one. For instance, it does not require more effort to learn, because the person is not aware that is assimilating new information or reinforcing previously acquired knowledge. In any case, it is essential that the message contain emotional and metaphorical elements to achieve more easily the goal.
Consciously or explicit learning requires the person to be fully aware of the learning process. In order to receive and maintain knowledge for a long period of time, and to record it in the brain the process needs to be repeated several times. That is the strategy that we used the most to learn. For example, little kids learn mathematics using multiplication tables, in which case, it has to be repeated again and again to achieve the message.
However, how many of you can ensure that you know the multiplication table without, at least, hesitate a second before answering? Therefore, explicit learning is difficult to learn and easy to forget, while implicit one is easy to learn and hard to forget.
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Marketing has learning tools that allow us to ensure the message is understood and remembered for longer time periods. It should be noted that although the easiest way to build a message is to explicitly mention all the functional benefits of the product, this is not the most effective method because it requires greater reach and frequency of media, implementation of BTL activities, and greater exposure at point of sale.
The opposite happens when the brand makes use of metaphorical tools to tell a story, while delivering a direct message to the consumer. In this case, the audience is not aware of what is learning and the message can become a pleasurable stimulus that the brain can understand and remember easily. The key factor in this type of learning is using positive emotional elements, which allow greater brand recall.
Thus, when delivering an explicit message and offering various visual stimuli simultaneously, the decoding process becomes a complex task, since the consumer must be aware and willing to receive the information. On the other hand, if brands use implicit message, it has an open field to enter to the brain and imprint the message in the memory.
While it is important to observe in order to deliver brand awareness to consumers, it is more important to optimize the resources to use tools that facilitate the understanding of the message and greater recall and liking the brand.