Connecting Brain Science and Branding with Daryl Weber

daryl weber on brand

“In marketing we’re trying to get people to do something. We need to understand why we do what we do. What motivates us?” Building on a career at Coca-Cola and brand consulting, Daryl Weber has devoted himself to connecting the dots of human behavior and branding. He’s the author of the new book Brand Seduction: How Neuroscience Can Help Marketers Build Memorable Brands. We discussed the book and the science behind it on this week’s episode of the On Brand podcast.

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About Daryl Weber

Daryl Weber is a branding consultant whose work has influenced many of the best brands in the world, including Coca-Cola, Nike, Johnnie Walker, Gatorade, Old Spice, and many more. He is the author of Brand Seduction: How Neuroscience Can Help Marketers Build Memorable Brands which explores the unconscious side of brands in a way that’s inspiring for creative marketers. Previously, Daryl was Global Director of Creative Strategy at The Coca-Cola Company, where he oversaw brand strategy for many of the company’s global billion-dollar brands.

Prior to that, he was a Director of Strategy at Redscout – a boutique brand and innovation consultancy where he advised Fortune 500 companies on new product innovation and brand positioning. Weber has a BA in psychology from Columbia University and resides in Atlanta with his wife, Jennifer, and son, Avi. You can follow him on Twitter @BrandedCortex.

Episode Highlights

What’s the connection between psychology and marketing? As a psychology major myself, I couldn’t wait to ask Daryl this. “The two are linked I think more than people think.” But where does a marketer start to connect these dots? You have to think about brands differently. That starts with your definition …

“Brands are a collection of associations,” Daryl offered a new grounding for our definition of branding. “Not just a logo or icon. Your brand is not an endpoint. It’s a starting point. A vision, a process.”

What’s an example of a brand that’s great at understanding their customers’ thinking? “Warby Parker. There’s an in-depth case study in the book. They wanted to telegraph how cool they were so they put together a strategy for doing that. They created a mood board for their brand personality. They knew that they needed to be a lifestyle or fashion brand first.”

“Your first step is to look inside yourself as a company.” Daryl noted that brands need to ask, “Why you’re here? Then look outside at the what I call the ‘3 Cs’ — consumers, competitive context, and culture (what’s going on more broadly). Marketers are starting to understand that humans aren’t rational. We have to embrace the messiness that comes with that.”

What’s one thing Daryl would tell marketers to do differently today? “It’s not about what you say. They (your audience) won’t remember the content of exactly what you said. But they’ll remember how you said it.”

What brand has made Daryl smile recently? “I’m a musician so I love Fender. I don’t even need a new bass but I still find myself looking.”

To learn more about Daryl, you can follow him on Twitter and check out his website.

As We Wrap …

Before we go, I want to flip the microphone around to our community … Recently Jordan Schwartz gave us a shoutout for our episode featuring Lauren Friedman of Adobe. Thanks for listening Jordan!

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