Emotional techniques build brands' personality

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How does an oncoming migraine feel? Like an approaching storm. A full-blown attack? Think thunder and lightning.

The preceding insights were gleaned from a set of research tools called projective techniques, which are gaining as a way for helping companies show product advantages (other than clinical) in a marketplace that is largely undifferentiated.

“It's really about developing a story about your product that can stick in a physician's mind,” said Greg Johnson, president/ CEO, Strategic Business Research.

Collaging or picture sorting “can be very effective to allow [patients] to express what they can't articulate,” noted Bart Weiner, president of GfK V2.

Insights can direct creative development, identifying images that fit the brand, even a model or actor who could stand in as proxy, said Michael Tucker, PhD, VP of research firm TVG.

While “the industry is very well aware of the importance of tapping into emotional motivation to drive demand,” according to Tucker, it's tough to keep clients interested after the first try.
 Companies must be able to put emotional insights into action, and “the vendor is responsible for helping them to do that,” he concluded. “Outside of driving creative development, that's going to be a big challenge.”

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