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melanie_grice.jpeg (800×960)Psychologists have long believed there to be differences between the right and the left sides of the brain. The right side of your brain is responsible for imagination and creativity, while the left side handles the details and implementation.

Marketing was once considered to be the realm of creative, right-brain types, but with advances in technology and the wealth of demographic, behavioral and transactional data at our disposal, many marketers now regard analytics as an integral part of their marketing strategy.

Left-brain marketing focuses on automation, analytics, and consumer insight gained through data and numbers. It is often referred to as a “black and white” approach, while the right side of the brain brings the ‘color, imagination and personality to a campaign.

Both Brain Marketing - Volkswagen’s SmileDrive App

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A recent example of a successful ‘both brain’ marketing campaign was Volkswagen’s SmileDrive app. VW collaborated with Google last year, on a digital ad campaign to promote the app, which records details of road trips, from the route taken to the average speed driven. The information can be shared with friends via the app’s underlying social network Google+, enabling them to follow the driver’s progress in real time. Photos and comments can be added by the driver and passengers, and a digital version of the classic car game ‘Punch Buggy’ was incorporated, to lessen the tedium of long journeys.

To encourage consumers to use the app, VW asked a group of influential driving enthusiasts to document their journeys in VW loaner cars. They made the content accessible through display ads, while Google’s analytic tools helped identify and target precise user segments for the ads.

The combination of targeting using analytics and creative content resulted in three times the typical level of engagement.

Modern day marketing relies on a healthy mixture of left and right brain marketing tactics and the most powerful campaigns engage the whole person; on one end of the spectrum, delighting consumers with rich, immersive right-brain experiences, while also appealing to the logical left brain’s practical needs.

If you only appeal to your customers intellect in your communications, they won't be moved enough to overcome any doubts. If you only appeal to their emotions without articulating the benefits of your offering, their rational mind will rule you out. 

If you communicate the value of your product/service in both right-brain (experiential) and left-brain (rational) language, you will help resolve conflicts between their desires and their bottom-line concerns.

Topics: Advertising, Marketing Strategy, Right Left Brain, Both Brain Marketing

Eric Greener

Written by Eric Greener

Founding partner at ExactDrive and happily married father of four.