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The Science Behind Marketing and How to Tactically Leverage It

This is fun little Visual I like to Use when I work with People to explain the basic scientific areas of Marketing.

In marketing you are always using the premise of a hypothesis, testing it, and proving it's repeatability. But there is also so much that goes into targeting human-beings

How Marketing uses Hypothesis'

Developing a Testable Hypothesis

  1. Identifying the problem or opportunity: Before creating a hypothesis, it's essential to pinpoint the specific issue or opportunity your marketing efforts aim to address. This process may involve analyzing market trends, customer feedback, or competitive analysis. For instance, you might identify that your email open rates are lower than the industry average, presenting an opportunity to improve your email marketing performance.

  2. Forming an educated guess based on prior knowledge and research: With a clear understanding of the problem or opportunity, create an educated guess or hypothesis about what changes might lead to better outcomes. This hypothesis should be based on research, past experiences, and any available data. For example, you may hypothesize that using personalized subject lines will increase your email open rates.

Designing Experiments to Test the Hypothesis

  1. Selecting appropriate variables and controls: To test your hypothesis, you'll need to design an experiment that manipulates one or more variables while keeping others constant. In the email subject line example, the variable to manipulate would be the subject line's content. You may choose to test two different versions of the subject line, one generic and one personalized, while keeping other factors like the sender name, email design, and send time constant.

  2. Establishing a clear methodology: Outline a step-by-step plan for conducting your experiment, including the sample size, how the test groups will be selected, and the duration of the test. For instance, you might decide to send emails to a random sample of 1,000 subscribers, with 500 receiving the generic subject line and 500 receiving the personalized version, over a two-week period.

Analyzing Results and Drawing Conclusions

  1. Evaluating the data to determine the validity of the hypothesis: Once your experiment is complete, gather and analyze the data to assess whether your hypothesis was correct. Compare the open rates of the two email versions and determine if there's a significant difference. Statistical tests like the t-test can help you evaluate the significance of your results.

  2. Adapting marketing strategies based on the findings: If the data supports your hypothesis, consider implementing the changes more broadly in your marketing efforts. In the email subject line example, if the personalized subject lines resulted in a significant increase in open rates, you might decide to use personalization in all future email campaigns. If the results were inconclusive or contradictory, refine your hypothesis and conduct further testing.

Example: Testing the Effectiveness of a New Email Subject Line Suppose a software company is experiencing low open rates for their monthly newsletter. They hypothesize that using more action-oriented language in the subject line will increase open rates. They create two subject line variations: "Your March Newsletter is Here" (control group) and "Unlock Your March Newsletter Now" (test group). They send the newsletter to a random sample of 2,000 subscribers, with 1,000 receiving each subject line. After analyzing the data, they find that the action-oriented subject line led to a 15% increase in open rates. Based on these findings, the company decides to use more action-oriented language in future email subject lines.

Behavioral Science in Marketing: A Closer Look

Understanding Cognitive Biases and Heuristics

  1. The anchoring effect: The anchoring effect refers to our tendency to rely heavily on the first piece of information (the anchor) when making decisions. In marketing, this can be used to influence consumer perceptions by introducing a higher-priced item first, making a lower-priced item appear more attractive in comparison.

  2. The scarcity principle: Scarcity drives demand by creating a sense of urgency. When products or services are presented as limited in availability, consumers are more likely to perceive them as more valuable and make a purchase.

  3. Social proof: Social proof is the psychological phenomenon where people look to the actions and opinions of others to inform their decisions. In marketing, leveraging social proof through testimonials, ratings, and reviews can help build trust and credibility, leading to increased conversions.

Leveraging Behavioral Science to Influence Consumer Decision-Making

  1. Framing offers and promotions: The way offers and promotions are framed can significantly impact consumer perceptions and decisions. For example, presenting a discount as "save $20" versus "20% off" can lead to different perceived values, even if the discount amount is the same.

  2. Designing user experiences to encourage desired actions: Marketers can apply behavioral science principles when designing user experiences, such as websites or mobile apps, to encourage specific actions. For example, using a default opt-in for newsletter subscriptions takes advantage of people's tendency towards inertia, increasing the likelihood of sign-ups.

  3. Utilizing social influence and testimonials: Integrating social proof elements, such as customer testimonials, ratings, and reviews, into marketing materials can help build trust and credibility. This can lead to increased conversion rates as potential customers are more likely to make a purchase when they see positive feedback from others.

Conducting Experiments to Optimize Marketing Tactics

  1. A/B testing: A/B testing, also known as split testing, involves comparing two versions of a marketing element (e.g., web pages, email subject lines, or ad creatives) to determine which one performs better. By measuring the impact of different variables on consumer behavior, marketers can make data-driven decisions to optimize their campaigns.

  2. Multivariate testing: Multivariate testing is similar to A/B testing but involves testing multiple variables simultaneously. This approach allows marketers to identify the best combination of elements to maximize performance. For example, testing different headlines, images, and call-to-action buttons on a landing page to find the most effective configuration.

Demographics & Personal

The importance of demographics and personal information

  1. Creating targeted marketing campaigns: Understanding your target audience's demographics, such as age, gender, location, and income, enables you to create highly relevant and personalized marketing campaigns, which can result in increased engagement and conversions. You'd be surprised how much a subject line's success can vary by what age someone is. For example: Boomers don't like Emojis, Millenials sort of do, Gen Z and Y prefer them.

    • Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964):

      • Communication channels: Baby Boomers tend to prefer traditional communication methods, such as direct mail, print ads, and television commercials. They are also increasingly using the internet, so incorporating digital channels like email and social media is essential for reaching this demographic.

      • Values: Baby Boomers value trustworthiness, quality, and excellent customer service. Emphasize these aspects in your marketing messages.

      • Content: Focus on providing informative and educational content that demonstrates the benefits and value of your products or services.

    • Generation X (born 1965-1980):

      • Communication channels: Generation X is comfortable with both traditional and digital marketing channels. They are likely to use email and social media platforms, such as Facebook and LinkedIn. Consider using a mix of these channels for your marketing campaigns.

      • Values: Generation X values work-life balance, financial stability, and authenticity. Tailor your marketing messages to appeal to these priorities.

      • Content: Offer content that addresses their pain points and provides practical solutions, such as tips on saving time or achieving financial goals.

    • Millennials (born 1981-1996):

      • Communication channels: Millennials are digital natives, so focusing on online marketing channels like social media, mobile apps, and email is crucial. Popular platforms for this demographic include Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.

      • Values: Millennials value experiences, social causes, and personalization. They also have a strong preference for authentic, transparent brands that align with their beliefs.

      • Content: Create engaging, shareable content that reflects their values and interests. Interactive content, such as quizzes and polls, can be particularly effective for this age group.

    • Generation Z (born 1997-2012):

      • Communication channels: Generation Z heavily relies on digital channels, especially mobile-first platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat. Influencer marketing and short-form video content can be particularly effective in reaching this audience.

      • Values: Gen Z values diversity, inclusivity, and social justice. They are also environmentally conscious and seek brands that prioritize sustainability.

      • Content: Develop visually appealing, snackable content that can be easily consumed on mobile devices. User-generated content and storytelling that highlights brand values can resonate well with this generation.

Building accurate buyer personas: Demographic and personal information can help you develop detailed buyer personas, allowing you to understand your ideal customers' needs, preferences, and pain points better. This knowledge can then be applied to create more effective marketing strategies.

B. Strategies for collecting demographic

  1. Surveys and questionnaires: One way to collect demographic and personal information is by conducting surveys and questionnaires. These can be distributed via email, social media, or embedded on your website.

  2. Website analytics: Analyzing website traffic data can provide insights into your audience's demographics, such as location, device usage, and browsing behavior.

  3. Social media insights: Many social media platforms offer built-in analytics tools that can provide valuable demographic information about your followers and their interests.

personal information

  1. Recorded video calls with prospects and customers. Look at their backgrounds and be observant to pick up queues. Do they have kids, a dog, wall decor that shows interests? I knowingly flaunt my Utah Jazz and Star Wars obsessions. Do you know how often it's been used in marketing or sales outreach to me? 3 times total in my entire career

  2. Social media profiles:

    • Analyze users' interests, likes, and follows to understand their preferences and hobbies.

    • Observe the type of content they share or engage with to identify content topics that may resonate with them.

    • Examine the hashtags they use or follow to learn about the issues or causes they care about.

  3. Articles they wrote:

  • Study the themes and topics of their articles to gain a better understanding of their expertise, industry knowledge, and opinions.

  • Take note of the tone and writing style they use, which can provide insights into their personality and communication preferences.

  • Analyze the comments and engagement their articles receive to understand the kind of content their audience finds valuable or controversial.

C. Utilizing demographic and personal information in marketing tactics

  1. Content personalization: Develop content that speaks to the specific needs and interests of different demographic groups within your target audience, making your marketing messages more effective and engaging.

    1. Develop content that aligns with your audience's interests, values, and preferences based on the insights you've gathered.

    2. Write in a tone and style that matches their communication preferences.

    3. Address the pain points and challenges they face, as identified through their articles and social media activity.

  2. Segmented email marketing: Use demographic and personal information to segment your email list and send highly relevant, personalized content to each segment, resulting in higher open and click-through rates.

  3. Targeted advertising: Leverage demographic data to create targeted advertising campaigns on platforms like Google Ads or Facebook, ensuring your ads are shown to the most relevant audience.

    1. Use the information you've collected to create more accurate and targeted audience segments for your advertising campaigns.

    2. Develop ad creative that speaks directly to their values, interests, and lifestyle.

    3. Tailor ad placements and scheduling to align with their online habits and preferences.

  4. Sales outreach:

    1. Personalize your sales pitch by incorporating the insights you've gathered about your prospects.

    2. Reference their articles, social media activity, or other personal information to demonstrate that you've done your homework and understand their needs.

    3. Align your product or service offering with their values, interests, and challenges to make a more compelling case for your solution.


Psychographic data encompasses information about consumers' attitudes, interests, values, and lifestyles. This data can provide deeper insights into your target audience's motivations and preferences, helping you create more compelling marketing campaigns.

Strategies for collecting psychographic data

  1. Surveys and interviews: Conducting surveys and interviews with customers can help you uncover their attitudes, opinions, and preferences.

  2. Social media listening: Monitoring social media conversations and engagement can provide insights into your audience's interests and values.

  3. Analyzing customer reviews: Examining customer reviews and testimonials can help you identify common themes and trends, shedding light on the factors that matter most to your customers.

Applying psychographic insights in marketing

  1. Content marketing: Use psychographic data to develop content that resonates with your audience's interests and values, increasing engagement and sharing.

  2. Personalization: Leverage psychographic insights to personalize marketing messages, offers, and experiences based on your customers' unique preferences and motivations.

  3. Audience segmentation: Combine demographic and psychographic data to create highly targeted audience segments, allowing you to tailor marketing campaigns to each segment's specific needs and desires.

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