Want to increase sales in your small business? Understand and leverage these psychological tricks
As a small business owner, you want to create a marketing strategy that resonates with your target audience and drives sales. Understanding and leveraging psychological tricks can help you achieve these goals.
Here are 14 psychological tricks that you can use in your marketing strategy:
- The Halo Effect: The halo effect is the tendency for people to form an overall positive impression of a person, company, or product based on a single positive trait or characteristic. As a small business owner, you can use the halo effect by emphasizing one of your product’s or service’s positive attributes, such as its quality or durability. For example, if you run a bakery, you might highlight your use of fresh, locally-sourced ingredients to create a positive impression of your brand.
- Serial Positioning Effect: The serial positioning effect refers to the tendency for people to remember the first and last items in a list more easily than the middle items. As a small business owner, you can use this effect by placing your most important products or services at the beginning or end of your marketing materials. For example, if you run a car dealership, you might list your most popular models at the beginning and end of your brochure to increase their memorability.
- Recency Effect: The recency effect is the tendency for people to remember more recent information better than older information. As a small business owner, you can use this effect by emphasizing the most recent updates or changes to your products or services. For example, if you run a software company, you might highlight the latest features or improvements in your marketing materials to create a sense of relevance and innovation.
- Mere Exposure Effect: The mere exposure effect refers to the tendency for people to develop a preference for things that are familiar to them. As a small business owner, you can use this effect by exposing your target audience to your brand and products repeatedly. For example, you might use retargeting ads to show your products to people who have already visited your website or social media pages.
- Loss Aversion: Loss aversion is the tendency for people to prefer avoiding losses to acquiring gains. As a small business owner, you can use this effect by emphasizing the potential losses that your customers might experience if they don’t use your products or services. For example, if you run a home security company, you might highlight the risks of burglary and property damage to encourage customers to invest in your services.
- Framing: Framing refers to the way that information is presented and how it affects people’s perception and decision-making. As a small business owner, you can use framing to highlight the positive aspects of your products or services. For example, if you run a fitness studio, you might frame your workouts as fun and empowering experiences rather than boring and tedious tasks.
- Ikea Effect: The Ikea effect is the tendency for people to place a higher value on things that they have contributed to creating. As a small business owner, you can use this effect by involving your customers in the creation or customization of your products or services. For example, if you run a jewelry store, you might offer personalized engraving or customization options to create a sense of ownership and pride among your customers.
- Anchoring: Anchoring refers to the tendency for people to rely too heavily on the first piece of information they receive when making a decision. As a small business owner, you can use anchoring by setting a high initial price for your products or services to create the impression of high value. For example, if you run a luxury spa, you might set a high starting price for your services to create the perception of exclusivity and quality.
- The Compromise Effect: The compromise effect is the tendency for people to choose the middle option when presented with three options. As a small business owner, you can use the compromise effect by presenting your target audience with three options for your products or services, with the middle option being the one you want them to choose. For example, if you run a clothing store, you might offer three pricing tiers for a particular item, with the middle tier being the one that you want customers to choose.
- Choice Overload: Choice overload refers to the negative effect of having too many options to choose from, which can lead to decision paralysis and dissatisfaction. As a small business owner, you can use choice overload by offering a limited number of options for your products or services. For example, if you run a restaurant, you might offer a smaller menu with a few high-quality dishes instead of a large menu with many options.
- Confirmation Bias: Confirmation bias is the tendency for people to seek out and interpret information in a way that confirms their existing beliefs and biases. As a small business owner, you can use confirmation bias by tailoring your marketing messages to your target audience’s existing beliefs and values. For example, if you run a vegan restaurant, you might focus your marketing on the health and environmental benefits of a plant-based diet to appeal to customers who already believe in these values.
- Bandwagon Effect: The bandwagon effect is the tendency for people to do or believe something simply because others are doing it or believing it. As a small business owner, you can use the bandwagon effect by emphasizing the popularity and social proof of your products or services. For example, you might include customer reviews and testimonials on your website to show that many people have already purchased and enjoyed your products.
- Blind-Spot Bias: Blind-spot bias is the tendency for people to recognize the biases and faults of others while failing to see their own biases and faults. As a small business owner, you can use blind-spot bias by acknowledging your own mistakes and limitations in your marketing materials. For example, if you run a tech startup, you might include a section on your website that discusses the challenges and obstacles that your company has faced and how you are working to overcome them.
- Pygmalion Effect: The Pygmalion effect is the tendency for people to perform better when they receive higher expectations or positive feedback. As a small business owner, you can use the Pygmalion effect by setting high expectations for your employees and providing them with positive feedback and recognition when they meet or exceed those expectations. This can lead to increased motivation and productivity, which can ultimately benefit your business.
Understanding and leveraging psychological tricks can help small business owners create effective marketing strategies that resonate with their target audience and drive sales. By using tricks like the halo effect, serial positioning effect, recency effect, mere exposure effect, loss aversion, framing, ikea effect, anchoring, the compromise effect, choice overload, confirmation bias, bandwagon effect, blind-spot bias, Pygmalion effect, small business owners can increase the effectiveness of their marketing efforts and build a strong brand reputation.
If you were going to use only three psychological tricks in your marketing strategy as a small business owner, I would suggest you start with these:
Recency Effect: The recency effect can be a powerful tool in marketing because people tend to remember and prioritize information that they have encountered most recently. By leveraging the recency effect, you can ensure that your brand and products are at the forefront of your customer’s minds when they are ready to make a purchasing decision. You can use this trick by regularly sharing new and relevant content, promotions, and updates on your website, social media channels, or email newsletter.
Loss Aversion: Loss aversion is a psychological bias that suggests people are more motivated by the prospect of losing something than they are by the prospect of gaining something. By using loss aversion, you can create a sense of urgency and scarcity around your products or services, which can increase the likelihood of customers taking action. You can use this trick by framing your marketing messages in terms of what customers stand to lose if they don’t purchase your product or service, rather than what they stand to gain.
Social Proof: Social proof is the idea that people are more likely to follow the actions of others when making decisions. By using social proof, you can create a sense of trust and credibility around your brand and products. You can use this trick by including customer reviews, ratings, and testimonials on your website and social media channels or by partnering with influencers or other brands that have a similar target audience.
By leveraging these three psychological tricks, you can create a more effective marketing strategy that resonates with your target audience and drives sales for your small business.