Facts vs. Emotion

Can you do me a favour?

I want you to think back, and consider the last few commercials, online stories, or promotional videos for a product that you’ve seen in the last while… What do you remember? Which ones had a lasting impact? What was it that you liked about it, and what was it that left a lasting impact in your memory?

Was it about the features of the product? Was it about the numbers and facts laid out neatly in front of you? Or was it how that video made you feel? The emotion it brought up for you when you saw it.

I would take a guess and say those impactful pieces you recall weren’t heavy on details and facts. They were probably funny, intriguing or insightful, right? They were powerful.

When you think of it this way, it seems funny how those of us in advertising and communications can forget about this. In the marketing trenches, we want to think that people remember features and stats, when often the memorable (and successful) pieces we see are the ones that touch our hearts, tickle our funny bone, or inspire us to action. But does this mean we have no need for facts and features? Of course not.

We want to purchase the car knowing that it meets certain criteria and has certain specs that we like. But do you think you would even consider buying the car if you couldn’t picture yourself driving it? That emotional connection is key.

It’s easy to lose our way like this in corporate communications. At Tripwire Media Group, we see it all the time. When we pitch a product or service, the facts and features are typically super important to the client, and hold a significant emotional connection to them and their business identity. Potential clients often assume: “if we care about facts and features, why won’t they?” But it’s important for us to teach clients that the emotional biases we have are just that: biases. They can forget to think about what is important to the end user or the viewer, and don’t consider what moves viewers to action. A lot of the work we do is teaching our clients to look beyond their priorities, and to first consider the priorities of their viewers or potential clients.

When making a corporate video, you need to remember that the video is not for you, it’s for them. You want to connect with them. That is, your audience, your customers, your clients, the world… Otherwise, why are you making it at all?


by Doug Darling, Executive Director of Tripwire Media Group

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