DECIPHERING...The new trend in Neuromarketing

In recent years a new branch of marketing, Neuro-marketing, has been growing, thanks in large part to the great advances in technology of the last 15 years. A practice that, by applying neuroscience techniques, seeks to analyze and understand in a scientific way the impact of marketing stimuli on consumer behavior and the neuro-physiological processes involved in decision making; in less technical terms, it is about understanding the brain as the organ involved in the purchase decision.

Here are some elements to keep in mind when considering techniques:

The first thing is that Neuro-marketing is not a panacea...yet. The application of Neuro-marketing alone will not give you all the answers, these techniques alone still do not provide all the answers, they generally provide the level of reaction to certain stimuli. For example, it has been proven that the recall levels of an advertising piece increase as they cause an emotional response, regardless of whether this response is good or bad, this is clearly not enough to guide a campaign.

Neuro-marketing is a new discipline that still lacks a broad consensus on many of the topics it covers, it also lacks standards regarding evaluation indicators and this opens up great opportunities for development, but also a challenge in interpretation, each company establishes its own indicators, learn how to interpret them.

Avoid investing to find the obvious, be well documented before investing.. There is a great contribution of this discipline in identifying the functioning of purchasing decisions in a transversal way with principles applicable to a large part of the population, where large and rigorous experiments have been carried out and found principles applicable to many categories. For example, aspects such as the brain always looks for the easiest, that is to say, the less "effort" or "pain" - as some authors describe it - it has to endure, the easier it will be to buy a particular product; the difference between men and women's brains, are logical principles but demonstrated with these techniques.

As with any research technique, the quality of the results depends to a large extent on the methodological rigor. The control of the right target group, the correct way of presenting the stimuli, are critical elements of success in obtaining successful results.

Another issue that arises with this type of methodologies are ethical dilemmas, Some believe that brands could eventually use all this unscrupulous knowledge to take away some of the customer's free will, leading them to consume certain products, affecting their independence, balance and even affecting their health. It should be clarified in the first instance that the so-called "buy button" of people has not yet been found in a conclusive way, simply the reading of the brain has been improved. The second argument is that these techniques are a means and in essence they are as good or bad depending on the purpose for which they are used, just as neuro-marketing can be used to promote the consumption of a product, it can also be used to design campaigns to promote obesity, preventive campaigns to avoid traffic accidents, etc. What is clear is that it is necessary, as in any new practice, to implement regulatory codes from an ethical and legal standpoint with a combination of a voluntary commitment and mandatory rules.

This is how, with a comprehensive and very critical approach to neuro-marketing, we can make the most of it and innovate in its application. We are just beginning to understand the brain in a scientific way and its impact on purchasing decisions.