Book Review

Book Review – Neuromarketing

This week I thought I would take a little break and provide a review of a book I read recently that you might find resourceful. As thought leadership is an important part of our business, we try to stay current and provide our clients with book recommendations and even book gifts when appropriate. You know you have great clients when this exchange goes both ways. That was the case recently when a client suggested I read Neuromarketing: Understanding the Buy Buttons in Your Customer’s Brain by Patrick Renvoisé and Christophe Morin (Amazon affiliate link).

As a student of psychology and a marketing practitioner I often consider my psych studies as some of the most effective training I had for my career in marketing. Many books on the subject of psychological marketing often end up short sheeting one or the other — either a heavy research-laden text or a pop-psych lightweight. Neuromarketing manages to break free of these traps by making a research-grounded assertion up front and then providing insight and formulas for implementing these theories.

The claim is simple. Renvoisé and Morin educate us on the “old brain” or reptilian brain. Though humans are differentiated by the middle brain and the new brain which process emotional and rational thinking respectively, it’s that well developed decision making cortex of the old brain that still holds incredible sway over our day-to-day actions as the authors outline. It’s that mammalian fight-or-flight system that we use to navigate the world around us. You can quickly see how this applies to sales and marketing, where we work to build triggers in hopes of influencing a decision to buy.

After backing up this theory enough to proceed, Renvoisé and Morin’s real contribution is in developing a simple and easy-to-remember process (it even rhymes!) for appealing to and persuading the old brain via marketing and sales practices:

  1. Diagnose the Pain.
  2. Differentiate your Claims.
  3. Demonstrate the Gain.
  4. Deliver to the Old Brain.

I enjoyed this book because it strikes the perfect balance of research-grounded neurological theory and actual marketing practice. It was also a breezy read that you can easily fit into a roundtrip flight. I would recommend it for any modern sales and marketing professionals — especially those charged with making a complex sale (it doesn’t have to be a that complex as the authors explain) or for organizations struggling to find a common communications platform for marketing and sales to share. In practice, the Neuromarketing system can inform the development of everything from a sales PowerPoint to a multimedia marketing campaign. And, more importantly, it can help take the guesswork out of appealing to your audience by providing a framework rooted in how we make decisions.

What are you reading?