Demystifying Neuromarketing

Focus makes the world’s business expertise available to everyone. They are an online resource where professionals can freely access research & expert advice to make better business decisions.

Tomorrow (Wednesday March 7, 2012, 1 PM – 1.45 PM Pacific Time), Focus will bring together some of the industry experts to explain what neuromarketing is and what it isn’t, in a roundtable free online event called Demystifying Neuromarketing. Some of the myths surrounding the industry will be revealed, as well as how brands are using this technology to make better marketing decisions. Understanding human decision making is the holy grail of both marketing and sales. Scientists have begun looking at how the brain is wired to help understand some of these questions. Neuromarketing describes the process of using brain scanning techniques typically paired with eye tracking to test the “neurological effectiveness” of online advertising, print campaigns, website design, and even user experience.

I am looking forward to attending, as the speakers will be:

Patrick Renvoise (Chief Neuromarketing Officer at SalesBrain – the world’s first neuromarketing coaching company)
Sara Misell (Director at Whitematter Marketing Ltd – the only strategic neuromarketing agency and consultancy that layers in Neuroscientific findings in to Marketing to make it more effective)

Click here you you are interested in joining this roundable.
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5 responses to “Demystifying Neuromarketing

  1. “Understanding human decision making is the holy grail of both marketing and sales.” – what is there to “demistify” about neuromarketing research? In our times, applying neuroscience to marketing strategies is a one-way road, and it certainly does not head towards a better world. It goes beyond consumerism, and in time has the potential to cultivate certain behaviours with us not even realizing it. It is a way to resuscitate the practice of phrenology and Orwellianize it.

    • Neuromarketing research aims to unveil, little by little, how we make decisions as consumers, in a way traditional marketing research methods could not reach. As the field is new, it gathered some misunderstandings (as you can remark from the questions asked by the people that attended this event – see here: and myths that need to be clarified.
      It doesn’t change behaviors, it doesn’t change people, it helps for a better understanding of how we do what we do and why we do it.
      As a consumer, I will always be interested to be in touch with this results, as they also help me understand how I make decisions, and understand why people around me act in a certain way.

  2. Many thanks for your reply and for the link! I completely understand your point, and truly appreciate the transparency you show on this blog. I also appreciate your intentions and the efforts in preserving an optimistic view towards neuromarketing, and towards the useful applications it may have in consumer behaviour. Neuroimaging can indeed help companies cater to our needs rather than our wants. But would you not agree that in the long run this practice could get out of control? I understand that, at least at this time, most of the neuroimaging findings are made available to owners of both small and large companies. This makes the use of this practice fair to everyone (to some extent). However, who can control the extent to which large corporations have the green light to fund more invasive research and use “volunteers” to find methods to get more directly at our brains. The implications of this practice are immense. I almost see it as a paradigm shift that can completely change the way we live our lives. Developments in today’s world are less than optimistic. Neuromarketing almost asks people to trust marketing companies to continue to shape (or start changing) our behaviour when these companies should hold themselves accountable for creating an unhealthy, toxic environment that has already led to unhealthy living styles, eating disorders, chronic health conditions, individualization and alienation. In “The Energy Glut” Ian Roberts already argues that supermarket planners are messing up with our limbic system. There is also a growing research body in evolutionary theory (which supports, and wants to contribute to neuromarketing research) regarding the development of the human brain, that demonstrated how the biological determines the cultural, and vice versa. From the current scientific literature one gets the feeling that advances in neuromarketing research can still be considered “exploratory,” in the sense that at the moment companies still only experiment with neuroimaging findings in their marketing strategies. However, the danger arises from how this experimentation might evolve, from finding “effective” marketing methods, to audience manipulation and even to losing control over the development of certain behaviours. In this light I seriously believe that neuromarketing, and neuroeconomics for that matter, can have irreversible effects on how our lives are being led. What scares me the most is that in academic settings to get to an interview with a street-corner shop owner one has to go through loads of red tape when it comes to ethics approval, while fMRI human brain scans for marketing purposes happen almost unchecked and unquestioned under our very own eyes. In this sense I believe that criticism should always be welcomed. Just to keep things in check.

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