Leverage Cognitive Biases Through Neuromarketing Techniques To Boost Brand Growth

Posted by Borderless Access on Jul 3, 2023 3:11:39 PM
Borderless Access


Any time a consumer makes a decision, there are two kinds of thinking processes involved, the slow process and the fast process of thinking. The slow process of decision-making is when the brain is paying attention to detail, solving complex mathematical problems, and makes a SWOT analysis before taking action. This method of thinking needs substantially more time to make the decision than the fast process as the name suggests. The fast process is adopted by the brain at the last leg of any purchase decision or while making an impulsive decision. It describes the instantaneous instinct of the consumer: To buy or not to buy. These immediate decisions, as neuroscientists define, are made by the limbic brain, based on factors unknown to the buyer. When explored through intensive research and brain imaging, it is concluded that cognitive biases are triggered as a response to marketing stimuli, nudging the brain to make that fast decision. 

Identifying these cognitive biases and using them to redirect the consumer’s attention towards a particular product is called consumer neuroscience or neuromarketing techniques. This field is a combination of neuroscience and consumer psychology. 

Cognitive biases, neuromarketing techniques, and leveraging them to drive consumer retention have become necessary feats in the field of marketing. Especially now, when an average consumer receives up to 5000 marketing-related messages every day. 

How marketers tap into cognitive biases


A cognitive bias is the result of a human brain’s attempt to simplify a large amount of information by processing them in the fastest time possible. Biases mostly work as a rule of thumb to make sense of the instantaneous reality and reach a plausible decision. These biases majorly work on past experiences, and social and environmental factors and prioritize preconceptions over reality (Tversky, A., & Kahneman, D. (1974)). These biases can only be identified through sophisticated equipment and intense research on consumer behavior. However, over the period, as the field of neuromarketing research techniques started to develop and implement newer technologies, some of the common cognitive biases can be broadly identified through consumer neuroscience practices. 

Marketers can bank on cognitive biases to increase their sales and widen their brand reach. Some of the biases and how marketers can use them to boost their results are discussed below: 

Contagion Effect: 

This bias is where the term “ jump on the bandwagon” originates from. It is a bias where decisions are made at the rate of how fast the trends, behaviors, and ideas catch on in the market. The contagion effect makes a consumer follow a popular trend without rationalizing or evaluating the idea.

 Examples of the Contagion effect:

  • A social media user sees that their connection has added different event-based frames to their profile picture. The user believes that they should follow suit.
  • A customer who visits an eCommerce website tends to check out the product that most of the other people are looking for, at the same time.

 How can Marketers use this bias:

The bandwagon effect is most effective when the brand wants to elicit a Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) through societal pressure. This can be carried out by placing multiple social proofs of the products and using them in social media accounts as the most popular choice. An example of this would be when a popular TV personality or an influencer is seen using the product. Consumers jump on the bandwagon to adopt the product that the majority of the crowd or a popular personality is using. 

Availability Cascade: 

When the brain is subjected to the same information in different ways, at different times, it begins to put value into the piece of information and considers it as true. The term availability cascade describes the cyclical, self-reinforcing thought of development to certain beliefs. This bias is most commonly used by news stations to implant news and details in the viewers' minds. 

Examples of the Availability Cascade:

  • A consumer develops the thought that a particular eCommerce website has affordable products on offer as they conduct sales & discount campaigns repetitively.
  • A buyer believes that a product or a service they subscribed to, is a good purchase when they see posts and advertisements for the same product online. 

How can Marketers use this bias:

Marketers tap into this cognitive bias to reinforce the brand imagery. It can help create a lasting impression of a brand on a user after repetitive messaging 

Choice Supportive Bias:

Choice-supportive bias is the tendency of the consumer to support and back their choices with better attributes than they possess. Meaning, the brain recalls the product of choice as the most positive option and chooses to ignore the negative features after the purchase is made. As a result of which, the consumer feels good about the decisions immediately after making the purchase.

Example of Choice Supportive Bias:

  • A client when asked to write a review of the product or service they bought shortly after the purchase is made will be more positive than if they provided a review days or weeks later. 

How can Marketers use this bias:

Automating an email asking for a client review within a few hours of a client receiving a service, downloading a product, or receiving a product delivery can increase the likelihood of positive reviews. Marketers can also remind the user of some services or products the consumer has used earlier with which they were highly satisfied. 

Anchoring Bias:

The tendency of the brain to form a belief, perception, or judgment based on the first or immediate piece of information it receives, even though it may not be true, factually correct, or unrealistic. Businesses can use this bias by offering a certain number of options and displaying the most expensive product first, followed by the affordable options. By doing so, It can manipulate the preconceived anchors in the human brain. The user would find the later options affordable in comparison to the expensive ones even though in isolation they may not be affordable.

Example of Anchoring Bias:

  • A shop owner advertises a product for $20, creating an anchor point for comparison. The price is gradually reduced to $10, the piece for which the shop owner actually intended to sell it. But, the buyer sees a discount, when compared to the anchor rate of $20, and makes the decision to purchase the product. By setting a higher anchor price, the shop owner skews the customers' perception and increases the likelihood of making higher sales.   

How can Marketers use this bias: 

Marketers can use anchoring bias across various sales channels, such as sales pages, shop displays (including online platforms), and other marketing campaigns. By employing comparisons, discounts, or enticing offers, marketers can set initial anchor points that shape consumers' opinions of the value of a product or service. Recognizing the power of anchoring bias enables marketers to strategically design their marketing efforts for optimal impact and conversion rates. 

The use of consumer neuroscience in all stages, from ideation to product development, increases the likelihood of the product being successful in the market. 

Some of the stages where customer behavior analysis and insights can be taken into consideration are:

  1. Website and social media testing
  2. Product testing
  3. Optimization of advertisements
  4. Revamping business image
  5. Building your brand presence 

When neuromarketing techniques are applied in all stages of business development, the brand can maintain consistent client attraction and sales generation. 

Borderless Access Insightz, an intelligence solution by Borderless Access offers businesses an integrated approach to applying neuromarketing techniques in all stages of product development and marketing. Being a digital-first company, Borderless Access understands in detail consumer behavior and delivers strategic insights that transform the way brands are perceived by consumers.

To learn more about how neuromarketing techniques can supercharge growth and brand awareness, visit www.borederlessaccess.com.

Topics: Borderless Access Insights, BA Insights, Neuromarketing, Consumer Neuroscience, Neuromarketing Consumer Behavior, Consumer Neuromarketing, Consumer Neuroscience and Neuromarketing, Neuromarketing and Consumer Behavior, Neuromarketing In Consumer Behavior, Consumer Insights Neuromarketing

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