The Psychology of Why We Buy

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This is a podcast episode titled, The Psychology of Why We Buy. The summary for this episode is: <p>Customers are constantly bombarded with ads and offerings every day, encouraging them to continually buy new products and services. But with so much noise in today's market, how can marketers and sales team increase their understanding of what encourages a customer to make a purchase?</p><p>In this Level Up episode, join Jordan Kraus (Client Success Partner) and Tyler Williams (Managing Sales Director) as they break down why people make subjective decisions and then find objective reasoning to support their purchases. As well, they provide some best-in-class tips on how marketing and sales teams can ensure they are meeting their customers where they are emotionally throughout their buyer's journey.</p>
💡 People Make Subjective Decisions and Find Objective Reasoning to Validate their Decisions
01:28 MIN
📈 Emotion Responses to Video Is Greater than Print Ads
00:31 MIN
🧑🏽‍🎨 Authenticity Builds Connections that Increase Sales
01:04 MIN
🚫 The Value of Saying "No" in Sales Conversations
00:46 MIN
🧗‍♀️ Healthy Tension Leads to Stronger Decisions
01:07 MIN
💲 What is Price Skimming?
01:05 MIN
🤔 Relevant Messaging at the Right Time vs. Omnipresent Marketing
01:59 MIN
👷🏾‍♀️ Influence Buyer Behavior by Building Brand Trust
01:04 MIN
📣 Building Brand Trust: Why It's Critical to Take a Stance
00:49 MIN
🎨 You Have to Be True to Yourself and Your Brand
01:30 MIN
🗣️ What Prevents a Purchase: Overcommunication
00:58 MIN
🤔 AIDA: Attention, Interest, Desire, Action
02:49 MIN
💭 It's Critical to Help Customers Envision Their Life With a Solution
01:16 MIN
🫂 In Summary: Meet Customers Where They Are At
01:23 MIN

Jordan Kraus: Thank you for joining for this episode of Level Up, the podcast for marketers by marketers, created by love that distills best practices and strategies focused on helping marketers increase their experience, 1- UP their strategy, and grow personally and professionally. We're your host Jordan Kraus. I am a client success partner here at Lev.

Tyler Williams: And I'm Tyler Williams, vertical sales leader.

Jordan Kraus: Perfect. Thank you. So when preparing for this episode, I started to think about some of the impulsive Instagram purchases that I've made and maybe even regretted, and also the psychology behind maybe why I made those purchases to begin with. And so I wanted to start out by asking Tyler, what are some of the last impulsive purchases that you've made on Instagram, or TikTok the kids are using, these days?

Tyler Williams: Yeah, good question. So, it would be Instagram. I am in fact not a kid, nor am I on that much social media, but Instagram gets me to convert, what I would say, not that impulsively, not that often. My wife might tell a different story. So, I've got two semi- impulse purchases fairly recently. The first one to highlight is that as a new father not getting much sleep, hydration is really important. I have used liquid IV in the past for things such as hangovers or sports. But now, stealing a little something is always a good thing. But I did get an ad for a competitor called Waterboy. They, of course, had this nutritional bar and facts that said less sugar, less calories, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, and bang, I ordered Waterboy. So, Waterboy, there's your free advertisement here. The second one, as I mentioned, as a new father, wine was something that my wife was not able to drink for the past nine months. So we were the members of a couple of wine clubs, canceled those subscriptions because, obviously, that was not something that needed to be flowing into the house. So had not renewed any of those, but did get served an ad for one of the wine clubs that we used to be a part of, the classic, " Miss you, friend. Here's six free bottles on us when you rejoin." And that took me about two seconds to rejoin that club. So, I guess I could use my new Waterboy to counteract the new wine club, but there you go. Jordan, how about you?

Jordan Kraus: I love that you got suckered into a re- engagement strategy. I love that that worked.

Tyler Williams: I don't know if that can be considered impulse if you're re- engaging, but it was an impulse re- engagement. I'm sure we've all been there.

Jordan Kraus: And smart marketing on their side. So in the world of reality TV and the world of Bravo, when really good reality TV stars have taglines, the first thing they'll do is run out and make a bunch of merch. And if I'm really invested in the entertainment, I will buy the merchandise. If I'm really invested... And so I have reality TV merchandise that a year from now is probably going to be completely irrelevant to what's going on, but I am suckered into that messaging right away. Being a part of it, being in it. Also supporting my reality TV star and them monetarily. But I think Instagram also does such a good job of targeting the right consumers and determining who has the highest likelihood to buy. Other things that I've bought are dog hair removal tools that barely work. I also went through a small stage where I was buying a lot of slime as a keep busy toy at work and in between calls. So that was also an impulsive purchase that I now have a large collection of, that I don't know what I'll be doing with. But I think what's interesting here is I think a combination of short- form content, timeliness, impulsive behaviors. And actually that's a pretty good segue into starting a conversation that we're going to be talking about today, which is the psychology of why we buy. And Tyler and I, when we were talking about this subject, broke things down into a few categories. And one of the first things that I said to Tyler was... On the first episode, Tyler had a really great quote about some advice that he had heard, which was people make objective decisions with subjective reasoning. So, people make... Did I say that backwards?

Tyler Williams: No. No, you said it. No, well said. And the other thing that Jordan mentioned, which I have to say out loud to the entire podcast, is that her mom wrote it down or considered it one of the best pieces of advice, or whatever you call another word for piece of advice, that she'd ever heard. So, I was absolutely floored by such a compliment. Yes, Jordan, you said it correctly. So, people make objective decisions. Oh, wait a minute. No, you did say it backwards. Oh, wow. This is really good podcasting. The statement is people make subjective decisions and then find objective reasons to validate their subjective decision.

Tyler Williams: There we go. I don't even know my own advice I give. This is just a good lens inside my soul. So, once again, subjective decisions, then we find objective reasons. Back to you, Jordan.

Jordan Kraus: And again, the number one fan of our podcast, my mom, really loved this advice. But it's the first thing I thought of when talking about the psychology of why we buy because emotions are at the forefront of why we buy and there's a lot of research behind this. In preparing for this episode, I was looking at some of the American Psychological Association studies that they've done and they've actually tested through an fMRI, through a functional MRI, to show that when evaluating brands and evaluating purchases, consumers are primarily using emotions, their personal feelings, their experiences with the brand, rather than the facts associated with the product, like brand attributes, features of the product. And I thought that was really interesting. There's real psychology that proves that the advice that you gave is accurate, saying that these are emotional decisions, and folks sometimes aren't even looking at the actual facts of the purchase that they're about to make. In fact, the other thing I thought was interesting, tying into our conversation about short- form content and having impulsive purchases, Is that consumers also have an emotional response to an ad far greater for video or television compared to print ads. So when we're seeing a video, we have a stronger emotional connection. Maybe that feels a little bit like common sense, but we have physical science to show that we're emotionally making those decisions. Seeing short-form content makes us have a stronger emotional connection, and therefore, a consumer is more likely to convert.

Tyler Williams: Yeah, I think that's a really interesting theme of that video, especially eliciting an emotional response. And spoiler alert, Jordan, I didn't prep this topic, but Jordan, I'm kind of interested to get your perspective on, I feel like, this past year and probably the last two to three years of Super Bowl ads. So, the proverbial Super Bowl for advertising and marketing for many brands. I feel like we've seen many brands go more to a storytelling, an emotional connection, that arguably has absolutely no tie to the brand or the actual product. And I'm actually curious to get your perspective on as a leader at a leading customer experience and marketing firm, do you think some of those ads or commercials, despite the fact that they're video and elicit emotional connection, if there's arguably no tie to the actual brand or product, are they still effective? Because I remember some of those Super Bowl ads, but do I remember the actual brand who put it on? Is there such a thing as going too far there? What's your opinion?

Jordan Kraus: I think that's a great question, especially when the first thing that comes to mind for me is insurance ads, like Geico, where the messaging that's in the commercial doesn't really say much about insurance, or if it does, it's a very small component of the entire commercial. They're just trying to be memorable. But one of the most memorable ads for me during the Super Bowl was The Farmer's Dog ad. I think a lot of people felt very emotionally impacted by that. And so to your point, Tyler, the ad was not about the food. The ad was not really about the switch from kibble and how much healthier this raw food is, this human- grade food product. The ad was about how much we love our pets, how long they're in our lives, the cycle of their life as a part of our life, all the way through seeing our pets pass away. And it is so emotionally... I mean, we're a couple months outside of the Super Bowl and I'm still thinking of that commercial today. And I think the other thing too that's very relevant for younger generations is cause marketing and understanding that maybe the brands that we're shopping with are doing the right thing, have our interests at the forefront. So, I think that's another way that our emotions play in determining what kind of brands that we want to do business with.

Tyler Williams: Yeah, really, really well said. And this kind of ties back to... And the reason that quote that Jordan's mom said that she liked so much, this idea that people make subjective decisions and then find objective reasons, look at The Farmer's Dog. I know nothing about their actual formula, right? Or their relative health of that food for our pets, but we both, and I remember that commercial as well, we connected emotionally with, " Wow, what a happy dog. It lives so long. I get more time with my dog." I will probably go read that nutrition label and say, " Wow, this is exactly what I'm looking for." I am not a nutritional scientist. I know nothing about dog food, but because of the emotional connection with that, I will then find a way to objectively tell myself, " Wow, that's what's in a dog food that makes my dog live longer and gives me a longer connection with my pet." Yeah. And there's lots of different ways that both from a marketing perspective, but then also from a selling perspective, right? Because as mentioned at the beginning of this, I lead a sales team here at Lev. You talk about connecting with our customers, making sure that there is mutual respect, that we understand their business, and that you connect on a personal level and with their business. Because at the end of the day, we here at Lev, to give a quick commercial, we believe we are the leaders from a customer experience perspective, and from a technical perspective within the Salesforce marketing cloud and other marketing platforms. However, no deal was ever won with promises of, " We are the best technically, and here's our sheet that proves it." Our perspective is that as marketers in connecting with both our end customer and our customer's customer, is that you have to be engaging, you have to emotionally connect with folks. And if I think about that, we always want to find a way to dissuade worry or concern about products. And that requires a level of authenticity. And I know we're going to talk more about that more from a marketing perspective and connecting with our customer's customer. But from a selling perspective, another really good piece of advice I was given, is very early in customer calls, find something to say no to. Because the cardinal sin of selling from a position of desperation or trying to convince someone you're the right fit for their company is just saying, " Yes, yes, yes." Spoiler alert, if a salesperson says yes to everything, they're lying and probably a lot. So my goal is always to find something that I can disagree with a customer on, to challenge, how do they handle conflict? How do they know I'm not just going to say yes to everything? And I think we see brands doing this from time to time as well. So, Jordan, I talked a little bit about sales psychology, and what I look for as a seller, but I think some of this probably translates to how brands connect with their end customer as well. Any thoughts there, or should we talk a little bit about the psychology of why we buy?

Jordan Kraus: Yeah, I think too... Well, the thing I was thinking about when you were talking about authenticity and saying no, was actually from a sales leader who we heard from during our sales kickoff, Todd Caponi who worked in surveys for a really long time. And he talked about how brands who have a four- star rating or four- and- a- half- star rating are more likely to reach consumers than brands who have a perfect five- star rating because consumers don't trust the rating. And so there is something there about saying no, especially as a client success partner, even recommending that somebody doesn't do work instead of just like you're in your sales day to day, we're in the project day to day saying, " Is this the right decision or not?" And so I think being realistic builds trust and I think that's ultimately why people want to do business, is because they trust you.

Tyler Williams: Yeah. Really good point, Jordan. And I think that healthy, healthy tension, right? That can be a T-word for some folks, but when you're working with a partner, and as a consulting partner and working with a customer, it is very rare for either side to be 100% correct about a decision or an idea, or a thought. The power of working with a strategic partner and the power of working with a really strong client, from our perspective, is that oftentimes we know platform and we know marketing strategy arguably as well or better than our customers, to be frank. But it's very rare for our customers to not know their own business better than we do. So there has to be this give and take of the customer knows their business and their goals better than they do, and they have to come to grips with the fact that, oftentimes, we know marketing strategy and platform capabilities better than they do, which means the end result is oftentimes somewhere in the middle when we come together and join forces.

Jordan Kraus: I think that's really well said, and I think that it's critical that we are not know-it-alls and we are learn- it- alls and we really take the time to listen to our customer, listen to where their pain points are, and avoid making assumptions.

Tyler Williams: I completely disagree. I know it all and I live my life completely on assumptions. Anyway. How about the psychology of why we buy, Jordan? What's up with price skimming these days?

Jordan Kraus: Well, we talked about how emotions play a part in making that purchase. We also talked about impulsive purchasing, Super Bowl ads. The other component that we feel is very strong in the psychology of why we buy is timing. And so price skimming is an old marketing term that I pulled out of my college days that I think is still really relevant today. And price skimming is the marketing philosophy that you sell your product at different prices at different points in time, depending on how long your product has been on the market. And this allows you to reach audiences at different price points. A really great example of this is something like the Apple iPhone. When the iPhone's first on the market, it might be priced at something like $1,000. And folks who are very tech-savvy or eager to have the newest product, we would call them early adopters, would be happy to pay that $1,000. Whereas other folks who are happy with maybe their current phone and don't need the newest product are not going to pay that. So after a few months of the product being out, Apple might reduce the price of that phone to $800, or as the next device comes out, the old devices might be reduced to $600. The hope is that over time you're skimming a slice of the market as to what price they are comfortable with. And it starts with maybe the highest price for that early adopter all the way down to the lowest price for, what we would call, laggards, folks who are the last to get to the new technology. And so in the philosophy of buying, in the philosophy and the psychology of buying, price skimming is an example of how you can use timing to reach all components of your market depending on the age of your product. I mean, how else do you think timing plays a role in the psychology of why we buy?

Tyler Williams: Yeah, I think there's a really interesting thing that marketers... We're always going to be striving to do two things simultaneously, which means if we're just mostly right about both of them, we're probably doing pretty well. And that's relevant messaging at the right time, whether that's triggered based on behavior, based on past order history, et cetera. So pinpoint communications when I'm most likely to buy using something like Marketing Cloud's feature of Send Time Optimization, even the most relevant messaging at the most relevant time in the day for me, that's bucket number one of what marketers are always seeking. Relevance, right? But then there's something, to go back to the Super Bowl ads, of, how can a brand elicit such trust, and even power, in our subliminal minds that somewhere deep in the back of our heads, I'm always thinking, " Wow, I love Apple," or, " Wow, I love Nike"? It's this idea of being omnipresent just enough. And obviously, as a customer experience, digital, and marketing cloud-focused firm, we're highly focused on email, SMS, and paid ad channels. But there's certainly a strong argument to be made that a lot of this, what we'll call, subliminal marketing still sits very much in traditional advertising, right? So TV ads, radio, and print still exists, FYI, for those of you who are only advertising in the metaverse. But things like that, right? That kind of omnipresence or that evergreen awareness advertising is so critical because there's always something in the back of my mind saying, " Huh, Nike," and then bang, I get an email at the right time all of a sudden and yes, I'm going to convert. And it's hard to measure that, it's hard to do it well, but that's marketing. What do you think, Jordan?

Jordan Kraus: I think most of your customers are not ready to buy when you reach them. And so I think what you've said is being present in their minds for when they are ready to buy is critical. So, just because you've reached out to somebody and they're not ready to convert in that moment doesn't mean all of that marketing is wasted. Most of your customers are not ready to convert yet. And so having all of that messaging over time, building trust with your customer, whether it is through paid media channels, traditional advertising, maybe it's organic social, maybe it's user- generated content, like you're seeing other people wearing Nike, Nike Run Clubs, when it comes time and you're ready to purchase, you want to be the brand that they think of.

Tyler Williams: Yeah. And when it comes to wanting to be the brand that your audience thinks of, there are times that you want to be that, and arguably there's times where you don't need to be that. So when I think about how timing and emotions support the brand mindshare of any brand within their customers' thoughts, every company is selling something. Whether you're a utility company with arguably a monopoly or you're a retail brand in a highly competitive marketplace, there is something in your end customers' mind about you that's influencing their behavior towards you, their marketing engagement of what you're putting out there, and then ultimately, if they have a choice, how they buy from you. And when I think about who or what is first to mind based on what we are putting out there into the universe as marketers, a lot of that starts with the foundation of building a reputation and a trust with a brand. And there are certain brands out there that have really strong personalities, if you will, right? So when we think about a personality of a brand, that can come from stances they take, it can come from the product experience, it can come from, singularly, their CEO, right? There is such a thing that an entire brand is based on a CEO's Twitter presence in this day and age, right? So, there's a lot that goes into that reputation or trust of the brand. I could probably rattle off a few brands that I feel are doing this fairly well. But Jordan, what are a few that come to your mind when you think about brands that are more than just their product?

Jordan Kraus: I guess I kind of hate saying this because it's so cliche, but the brand that comes top of mind to me is Patagonia. It's a brand that I know has very specific social stances. It's a brand that I know lives those values. One of the things that I think I really value about Patagonia is their commitment to sustainability, their commitment to protecting their employees, and to having a sustainable supply chain. They have a lot of corporate responsibility and they are themselves a B corporation, and they restrict who they will allow to co- brand their merchandise. So, they have a short list of qualifications that you have to meet if you would like to have a corporate- sponsored Patagonia jacket to hand out to your employees. And I think that there's a lot of other things they do. They have a great recycling program. Also, their clothing is very high quality and lasts for a really long time. So, even if it is a heavy investment upfront, you know that it will maintain its value. And so when I think about a brand who has a personality in my mind and a brand that I can trust, that is one that is top of mind. There's actually quite a few companies out in Colorado that are similar in that kind of Patagonia space of athleisure wear, who have very high values. And consumers are attracted to those brands, even if it means spending more money, even if it means spending another 20% on the price tag because you know that that company is doing things sustainably, that we as consumers are willing to spend more to work with a brand that is doing things sustainably. And again, maybe it's just that you have that brand mindshare, that you trust that brand. And again, maybe you're not ready to buy. But when you are ready to buy, where's the first place that you go?

Yeah, I totally agree. I think there's a few more companies. Certainly I've mentioned Nike a few times. But as someone who enjoys watching sports and playing from time to time, certainly Nike has taken a number of different stances through the years. And some of those can be controversial, right? But sometimes that is more important to take a stance and be front and center. If you ever find yourself voicing an opinion that everyone agrees with, you're either lying to yourself, or people are lying to you rather. So, I do really respect brands... Even if I may not agree with the stance they're taking, there are times when I really appreciate that they're putting themselves out there and saying, " This is what we believe in," right, wrong, or indifferent based on my opinion, right? An opinion being the operative work there. However, on the other side of the coin is this idea that brands must understand, what are customers looking for from you, right? There are certain brands that have built the personality and the brand equity, such as Patagonia, Nike, where they are more than just fleeces and basketball shoes, right? They are truly social brands. There are other brands that have not achieved that level, and maybe someday they will. And I respect the brands that are on that journey to try to get to such levels. But there are also plenty of companies out there in this world that we don't need to hear from every time a certain social event occurs, political event occurs. And this is a section of today's podcast that I'm not going to get into specifics on. However, you probably don't need to hear from your friendly utility company about XYZ major political fiasco, right? There are certain topics that we've all seen it. Whether you've worked in- house at a brand like I have or have been in consulting your whole life, there are certain moments where a CMO or some C- suite leader says, " Well, we need to put out a message about this. We have to take a stance on this topic." And 99.9% of the time when a C- suite leader says, " We need to take a stance here," it's probably a topic that no one cares what your opinion is on. So, I don't want to dissuade brands from having an opinion and putting things into the marketplace. At the same time, know what your buyers expect from you because you might elicit that nasty Unsubscribe button if you're insert company, industry, or name here, and you're voicing your opinion on something that a brand, or a person rather, a consumer doesn't care that you have an opinion about.

Jordan Kraus: You have to be true to yourself and to your brand, to your mission as a brand, and to your values as a brand. Again, some of the foundational marketing that I learned was from Jim Collins who wrote a handful of really great business books. One was called Good to Great. And he really preached how values for a company stay true for their entire history. So companies like Disney, for example, whose values are to have fun and create magic, those are still true after 100 years. So I think if you're wondering where are the places for me to speak up, like the utility example that you gave, we would like to hear from you about what you're doing for sustainability, but maybe we don't need to hear your political affiliation. So that, I think, is a great example of, what makes sense for your brand? Who are you at your core? And how do those values inform what you're doing on a day- to-day basis? That's also why it's really important that values are understood from your C- level executive all the way through your lowest- level employee, that everyone has an understanding of what your core mission is and your value statement, and you're all rowing in the same direction so that the decisions being made for the day-to-day marketing campaign are thought about with the same carefulness as a corporate strategy because it is important that it's true to yourself, to who your brand is. And maybe there's also things that you are doing. Thinking about mindshare and thinking about the place that we take space into our consumers' brands, there could be things that you're doing that are preventing a purchase. What kind of things do you think, Tyler, would prevent a... What kind of mistakes do you think a brand could make that would prevent a consumer from purchasing?

Tyler Williams: Oh boy. This could be a whole separate podcast topic. I mean, when I think about preventing a purchase, I think about going back to some of our most basic selling or brand experiences. Certainly we think about oversaturation, especially in communication. And this is where, coming from my role here at Lev within sales, but also thinking about our customers, customers within marketing, there are few things worse than a brand who sends too many emails or a salesperson that talks too much. Those are two of the fastest ways to annoy your customers, and we certainly don't want to do that. So when I think about ways to make sure that we aren't blocking folks from a purchase, that means meeting your customer, again, where they are. Another classic, unfortunately, horribly traditional sales experience that we all have together is buying a vehicle. So if I think about buying a car, oftentimes when we walk on a car lot, whether it be new or used, we've got a pretty good idea of what we want, the price point we want it at, and we want to know if the dealership can make that thing happen. I don't need the spiel about the extended warranty, the next trim package up, or why they can't get my color of the vehicle I want for two years, right? Oftentimes, we as buyers are far more educated even than the seller when we walk on the lot. So that's really something I think about when I think about brands when it comes to their level of communication, quality, or quantity. Or in my world with sellers, are we talking too much? Are we letting the customer choose their own adventure? Because ultimately, the customer is always right, whether it's a consumer good that we're marketing to the end consumer, or if my team is selling to a customer. At the end of the day, we really only have that much influence. We're just helping the customer make the decision and feel good about the decision they've probably already made from the second day they thought about this whole thing. So all that being said, speaking of a decision that's long since been made, let's talk about buyer readiness, which is really the last kind of pillar of today's conversation when we talk about how we influence and what the psychology is of the way we buy. So, there's this really interesting point of buyer readiness when we talk about crossing the threshold. And insert marketing cliches here when we think about the funnel, right? Awareness, consideration, blah, blah, blah, all words that we all know. But oftentimes, there's blockers within each stage of the funnel, right? And I think this is really where we have to know our audience and understand the data with which we're segmenting. Prior to coming to Lev, I worked at a digital marketing agency and had a very large client in the outdoor recreation and lifestyle space. And something that we really struggled with initially, but came to embrace, was the fact that 95% of our audience was never going to buy from us. Which is kind of a hilarious thing to say, but it was really important for us to understand that we had such a strong brand, that people followed the lifestyle. It was a product they aspired to be able to own the product at a high price point, and it was relatively limited quantity. But those things, once we realized it, we became even more accepting of the fact that, " Wait a second, even though we're manufacturing a product, we're actually a lifestyle brand, and that's how our audience views us. And therefore, the people who actually want to buy us will... Buy our product rather, will find their way to us. And therefore, we can focus on our core values of lifestyle, what it means to live this way. And oh, by the way, our product helps you do that." So, Jordan, what do you think about all that?

Well, the funny thing is I think there are a lot of very cliche sales tactics that we can talk about here. Even preparing for this episode, Tyler and I were talking about AIDA, which is attention, interest, desire, and action. It is a funnel that you learn as a part of a sales technique, but there is psychology behind this. It's an old sales technique that still holds true for a reason because it's tied into how we learn. In fact, Psychology Today had a really interesting article about how we have a learning pathway. And we know about the different ways that we learn. We know about people who learn traditionally in a classroom by reading and writing, folks who learn by doing, by physically actually taking action. And the truth is that the sales cycle is very much about learning, especially when you're in a space where you don't have a physical product. If you are in technology, if you are in insurance and you don't have a physical product and it's more of an idea, this learning pathway is even more critical. So the three learning pathways that they see us going through start with cognitive traditional learning. Or maybe the very first time you're introducing somebody to your brand or your product is through a video, something they're reading online. It's a way that they're traditionally taking in new information. And the best that you can do as a marketer is just make that information accessible and digestible. Once they're aware, maybe on that very rudimentary level of your brand comes to experiential learning. And this is where your consumer can develop some hands-on way to apply your product or service. If you are in marketing, this could mean getting your product physically into their hands. If you don't have a physical product, maybe it's a demo, but some way where they can start to see, " How does this fit into my day-to-day life?" And then the last and probably the most important learning pathway as far as the psychology of why we buy, is what Psychology Today calls constructivist. This essentially means how we add meaning to the product. So, what makes it meaningful? Is it saving me time? Is it saving me money? Is it making my dog healthy from Farmer's Dog? And it's helping the customer to envision a future where the problem has been solved by your product or service. And so it's really interesting, these three steps of the pathway that I've just stepped through, cognitive, hands-on, meaningful pathways that are really closely tied to that cheesy kind of AIDA that we learned of, awareness, interest, decision, and action, of the psychology behind why folks move through that funnel. So thinking about buyer readiness and talking about this story from your last customer who saw themselves as a lifestyle brand, I'm curious, how do they start to engage with the brand, even if they're not ready for that really big purchase? Would they ever have an opportunity to buy? Or how do they start to engage with a lifestyle brand on a smaller scale? Or if you are that brand and maybe your product or offering is class prohibitive, how do you reach to folks who aren't engaging because of cost?

Tyler Williams: Goodness, I love so many things that you just said, Jordan. And I'm going to answer your question in just a moment. But I do think in our world, which many marketers are in this world today, we don't have a tangible product often. Or even if we do, a customer can't put hands on it before they buy it. So I sometimes joke with folks like, " Wow, I sure wish I was selling shovels at the local hardware store because I could say,'Oh, you want this shovel? Here it is. Let me know if you would like it.'" But that wouldn't be all that much fun. I'm assuming shovel salesmen have tons of fun. But that being said, It is so important, something you mentioned, to help the customer, and that can be our customer or our customer's customer, envision their life with this solution. And that's where I think it's so important to talk about, to your point, lifestyle, right? I'm talking about an outdoor brand who was in kind of the camping adventure world, right? It's actually not that different than our customers who might be a B2B high-tech company selling a microchip processor, which is sometimes not the most exciting thing to talk about when compared to an outdoor adventure lifestyle brand. But the goal of helping your customer envision how their life might be different, more efficient, more exciting, whatever that term is, that's really where the magic is when we think about brands who we perceive as marketing themselves really well. So, Jordan, get back to your question of, " Hey, if I'm a brand that has a really high- priced product, who maybe not everyone can access, who I want to have more of a lifestyle branding, is there a path for me to get my hands on more customers, introduce them to my brand?" When I think of brands who have done that really well, YETI comes to mind. For those of you somewhat unfamiliar, Yeti sells very high quality, which comes with a certain price tag, coolers of different sizes, right? However, following their initial cooler products, YETI moved pretty quickly into the market of tumblers, right? Other, quote, unquote, " indestructible vessels of things." Coolers, obviously, vessels of ice and cold meats or adult beverages. Or the tumbler world, right? Where that can be a $ 15 purchase. That really gave people access to the YETI brand to say, " Hey, even if I can't afford that$ 600 bearproof cooler, I can afford that$ 20 tumbler because I identify with that YETI brand, that lifestyle. I want to be bearproof. And my way of starting my journey to being bearproof is having this tumbler that I drink my ice-cold latte out of in the mornings. So that's what I think, Jordan.

Jordan Kraus: Well, it ties really nicely into everything that we've talked about because it's about who your brand is, your mindshare that you have of this person, that even if they don't want that really expensive cooler or maybe they can't afford that really expensive cooler, they admire your brand so much that they're willing to spring for the tumbler, the coffee cup, because it's how they think about the brand. So just putting all the pieces together of what we talked about in the psychology of why we buy, emotions, I think, are the underbelly of everything we've talked about today. That folks are making emotional decisions and that's why it's so important for you to put your feet in your customer's shoes and try to empathize with what kind of sentiments they have with your brand. Timing. Meeting your customer where they are, realizing that even if your customer is not ready to buy, that it's still important to have the communications reaching them at the right time when they are ready to buy. To have mindshare. To build trust with your customers so that they're thinking of you, they know who you are as a brand, they know what you stand for, what your value system is. And lastly, buyer readiness. Understanding why somebody isn't ready to purchase and also going through and understanding that learning pathway of how to get somebody ready to buy and maybe even understanding some of the blockers to why they're not ready to buy. So lots and lots of things here, but at the end of the day, I think it's super important to remember how there's a lot going on behind that decision before they even start talking to you about converting or before they even make a purchase.

Tyler Williams: Well said, Jordan. I have nothing to add to recap this episode. As I stated earlier, the only thing worse than a sales guy is a sales guy that talks too much. So, that's all folks. Thank you for joining us for this episode of Level Up. Looking to continue to level up your knowledge on the latest news, technology, and marketing trends affecting marketers day to day? Stay tuned for future episodes of Level Up with new episodes coming out every other Thursday on Spotify and Apple Music. Until next time, thank you for leveling up your marketing knowledge with us.


Customers are constantly bombarded with ads and offerings every day, encouraging them to continually buy new products and services. But with so much noise in today's market, how can marketers and sales team increase their understanding of what encourages a customer to make a purchase?

In this Level Up episode, join Jordan Kraus (Client Success Partner) and Tyler Williams (Managing Sales Director) as they break down why people make subjective decisions and then find objective reasoning to support their purchases. As well, they provide some best-in-class tips on how marketing and sales teams can ensure they are meeting their customers where they are emotionally throughout their buyer's journey.

Today's Guests

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Tyler Williams

|Managing Sales Director
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Jordan Kraus

|Client Success Partner