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Can neuromarketing be used to inform and educate?

January 24, 2015 0 Comments

Having written about the potential dangers of neuromarketing, let’s spend a few posts discussing its potential benefits. Yes, there are potential benefits.

brain-and-learningNeuromarketing can be used by the public sector to develop more effective behavioral change programs and provide consumers with unprecedented insights into their own decision-making processes. It can be used by consumers to help them understand how they make decisions and how they’re influenced in making decisions, so they can have more control over purchase decisions that they make quickly without much conscious thought.

Behavioral economics, one of the academic disciplines that underlie neuromarketing, sheds light on how human beings make economic or commercial decisions. Behavioral economics gives us new and powerful tools for understanding and preventing economic crises, or dealing with their consequences if they can’t be prevented. Behavioral economics has also found a receptive audience among executives in the private and public sectors, who aim at improving the effectiveness of the decisions they need to make. The end result of adopting this more realistic model of decision making should be a positive one, because decision biases that we were previously unaware of are identified and corrected in personal and corporate financial decision making.

We believe a similar situation is occurring with respect to neuromarketing. Neuromarketing is based on brain science findings that allow us to understand how consumers really make decisions and how those decisions are influenced by internal mental processes and environmental cues around us. Marketers can use these insights to lift the effectiveness of their strategies and tactics, and consumers can use the very same insights to make better decisions.

We see a future where neuroscience principles are taught in schools, helping students to develop their willpower, improve their ability to change bad habits, increase their awareness of how biases and nonconscious impressions shape their decisions, and much more.

Marketing is, after all, a kind of teaching. In fact, in some ways, it’s a more powerful kind of teaching than what we’ve achieved in our classrooms. Most Americans can’t remember the capitals of the 50 states they memorized in grade school, but they can still hum the jingles they watched on TV as children. The same brain science principles that underlie neuromarketing can and should be applied to improving education and teaching techniques around the world.

N4D-cover -120pxThis post is excerpted, with minor edits, from Neuromarketing for Dummies, Chapter 4, “Why Neuromarketing Matters.”

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About the Author:

AvatarSteve is a pioneer in the field of neuromarketing. He founded one of the first neuromarketing research firms in 2006 and published the first comprehensive overview of the field, Neuromarketing for Dummies, in 2013. He established Intuitive Consumer Insights in 2012 to help clients, vendors, and industry associations navigate the opportunities and challenges neuromarketing presents to the marketing and market research communities.

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