Summary: What is emotional marketing content? Emotional marketing is a type of advertising that focuses on using emotions to persuade audiences to notice, remember, share or buy your product or services. Therefore, emotional content marketing would use words to provoke a consumer response, commonly tapping into single emotions such as happiness, sadness etc. Are you writing emotional marketing content and in search of words for your copy? This article is a great explanation of emotional marketing and offers 200+ words for your copy.
While we like to think we make decisions based on rationale and logic, the truth is that they are largely, if not entirely, emotion-based. We are wired to respond to external stimuli with emotions first (the limbic system, in the center of the brain), followed only then by logic (the outer neocortex). So indeed, our brains operate from the inside out.
In fact, studies have found that people with damage to their limbic system are incapable of making decisions. So what does this have to do with marketing? Well, consumers are faced with countless decisions every day. So by triggering particular emotions with your marketing copy (so long as they have a limbic system), you have the ability to influence their behavior.
Not long ago, we presented you with 120 words and phrases to use for emotional marketing. It was a huge hit! That’s why we’re coming back with over 200 more words to use—this time broken into five categories:
We’ll cover the role each of these emotions plays in consumer behavior and buying habits, then shower you with all the words you can use to evoke them
Why use emotions in marketing?
So we know that emotions drive decisions, but let’s talk about the other reasons you should spend time on emotional marketing.
Humanise Your Business
Research shows that consumers perceive the same type of personality characteristics in brands as they do in people, and that attraction is emotion-based, not rational. So, just as an emotionless human is hard to connect with and oftentimes avoided…
…so, too, is a brand that represents itself as a colorless array of products, features, and benefits. Emotional words and phrases transform your brand into a character with a particular tone, voice, and personality that consumers can be attracted to and connect with.
Build a Community
Think of emotions as a way not to get in front of your audience, but behind them. By producing content that represents the emotions they want to avoid or achieve, you can demonstrate that you really get them. That you have their back.
And a person that feels validated and accepted is going to want to give others who are like-minded the opportunity to experience that too. And before you know it, your audience is building itself into a niche of individuals who share the same values.
Leave an Imprint
With consumers being exposed to 6-10,000 ads a day, most content goes in one consumer’s ear (or eye) and out the other in a matter of seconds. However, studies show (and you have experienced this yourself) that emotional experiences are more likely to be retained in our memory than non-emotional experiences. The more that your content can produce an emotional experience for your viewers and readers, the higher the chances are that they will remember you later.
Convey More with Less
There’s a time and a place for long-form content, but for a lot of marketing material (blog post titles, social media posts, email subject lines, short blurbs), you only have a certain number of characters to work with and make an impression. Emotional words hold power and can enable you to convey more with less. In other words, you can write less because you’re writing best.
Outlast Products and Promotions
Promotions come and go, product and service offerings evolve over time, and persona pain points and desires change. But emotions are here. Hardwired in. For infinity. Anger will always be anger, joy will always be joy, and fear will always be fear. So as long as humans have brains (with functioning limbic systems, of course), marketers can always count on them for effective campaigns, no matter what changes around them.
Why these particular emotions?
Emotions are powerful, motivating, colorful, and abundant.
We picked these five because they are effective in getting consumers to act, and in different ways. For example:
- Loyalty: Helps prospects to trust you faster (i.e. providing their contact information) and existing customers to spend more over time.
- Confidence: Encourages consumers to purchase more in the beginning and turn to you for ongoing support.
- Anger: Inspires immediate action and helps you to highlight your solution.
- Fear: Strengthens your connection with your audience, increases their reliance on your business, and improves their memory of your brand.
- Curiosity: Gets your audience to explore your brand and click through to your content.
Words and Phrases That Communicate Loyalty
Is loyalty even an emotion? Actually, there are two types of loyalty: transactional loyalty and emotional loyalty. With transactional loyalty, customers stick with you for rational reasons: you’re the closest to them, you offer the lowest prices, or there simply aren’t any nearby alternatives.
With emotional loyalty, on the other hand, customers stick with you because they feel connected to you. And they are more likely to stick with you even if a competing business offers a lower price or better offer. Not only that, but customer loyalty reduces costs and drives revenue. Here’s the data to prove it:
- Loyal customers spend 67% more than new ones.
- 82% of companies agree that customer retention is cheaper than acquisition.
- It costs up to 7x more to acquire a new customer than to retain an old one.
But while customer loyalty programs can bring major benefits to your business, they are quite transactional. Think about the words we often use to describe and promote the program:
- Cash in
- Collect and save
- Start saving
So let’s take a more emotional approach to loyalty. There are three aspects of messaging to cover here: The first is your loyalty to your mission. The second is loyalty to your customers. The third is your customers’ loyalty to you.
Communicate Loyalty to Your Mission
Loyalty to your mission starts with the leadership in your business, trickles down through its employees, and gets picked up on by customers. When you have cultivated this kind of loyalty, the words should come easy. But if they don’t, try some of these:
- For over X years
- No matter what
- Our promise
- Our standards
- Over the years
- Pride ourselves on
Now let’s talk about the other two aspects of loyalty: how faithful you are to your current customers and vice versa. Did you know that 91% of customers from the ages of 18 to 34 trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations?
This, of course, highlights the importance of having reviews and testimonials. But it also means that prospects trust the personal opinions of strangers.
So if prospects pick up on the fact that current customers aren’t just happy with you, but keep returning, and that you aren’t just helpful to them but are committed to their ongoing success, will they not want to become a part of that?
Here are some words and phrases that can communicate the loyalty between you and your customers:
- Customer spotlight
- Customer success
- Frequent flyers
- Have stuck with us
- Join X others
- Like our own
- See why our customers keep returning
- Throughout your/our journey
Words and Phrases That Foster Confidence
Businesses exist to solve other people’s or business’s problems. And yet there exist countless other businesses that solve the same problems as you. So how can you stand out from your competitors? By fostering a sense of confidence—in your business and in your audience.
Confidence in Your Business
Like loyalty, confidence grows from the inside out. So first, make sure you build confidence within your organisation—in your products, services, mission, and values. Hold regular meetings or dedicate chat channels to sharing milestones, acknowledging people who demonstrate your core values, and showing tangible ways you have benefited your customers.
When your employees believe in and are enthusiastic about your mission, they will naturally inspire others to believe in it too. An expression of confidence can really make the difference between customers feeling good about your business and feeling passionate about it.
Here are some words and phrases that will have your business radiating confidence:
- Count on
- Deliver | We deliver on our promise of ______.
- [Eliminate problem] for good
- Every single time
- Founded on
- Market leader
- Most reliable
- Rely | [X] small businesses rely on our solutions to [reach desired goal].
- See who we’ve helped so far
- Swear by | See why our clients swear by our [solution].
- The [company name] difference/advantage
- Top tier
- Top trusted
- Tried and true
- Trusted by over X [brands, businesses, designers, etc].
- Why choose us? [then answer that]
- Why [your product/service] beats [a larger competitor’s]
Foster Confidence in Your Customers
Conveying confidence in what your business does is only half of the equation. It is also an emotion your customers want to feel within themselves and their decision to use your business. So it’s up to you to reassure them that they’re not alone with the problem they wish to solve; and that they can and will identify and achieve the right solution with you.
Here are the words that will reassure and empower them:
- Become the ____ you’ve always wanted to be.
- Doubt no longer
- Eliminate the guesswork
- Every step
- Fear not
- From start to finish
- Got your back
- Got you covered
- In good hands
- If you’re like most [members of niche]… (This is better than saying “It’s obvious that” or “Clearly”).
- Informed decisions
- Meet you where you are
- Move the needle
- No matter where you’re at
- Own your ______
- Pull the trigger
- Rest assured
- Results you want
- Say goodbye to
- Sound decisions
- Take charge of
- Take control
- The support you need
- Tips we swear by
- Together we can [accomplish client’s vision]
- Under our wing
- Uncover the [ability/desired entity] you didn’t know you had
- Walk you through
- We’ll find a way
- You hold the power
- You’re not alone
As they say, confidence is attractive. Celebrate your wins and show off what you’re proud of, but don’t forget words of affirmation for your customers.
Words and Phrases that Elicit Fear
It can be easy to think that loyalty, confidence, joy, and other positive emotions are the only ones to appeal to with your marketing copy. But as mentioned above, businesses exist to solve a problem. And consumers want their problem solved in order to escape from the negative emotions it causes—stress, anxiety, overwhelm, exasperation, fear, and anger. Those last two are what we’ll focus on next.
Fear can be a powerful motivator for taking action. Consumers can be fearful of missing out, losing something, falling short, and the list goes on.
Did someone say FOMO?
Yes. And it’s a big one. According to one study:
- 60% of millennial consumers said they make a reactive purchase after experiencing FOMO, most often within 24 hours.
- 40% of millennials overspend or go into debt to keep up with their friends.
You’re not looking to put your customers into debt, of course. But we can see that fear influences purchasing decisions, and not just for millennials.
So how do you use it in your marketing? Your goal with eliciting fear isn’t to completely scare your target customers, but rather to spur them to action that will be to their benefit.
Here are some words and phrases that can trigger [healthy levels of] fear:
- Are you ready/prepared/equipped?
- Before it’s too late
- Cost you
- Fall victim too
This one is a bit harsh, but hear me out:
- Not enough
- Prevent [bad outcome]
- Preventing | Could your habits be preventing you from achieving [desired outcome]?
- Protect your
- [Don’t] realise
- Really | But are you really moving the needle?
- Should | X scary stats every [target customer persona] should be aware of.
- Too late
- Waste | Are you wasting your time on strategies that don’t work?
- What NOT to do
- Why you need to [stop/get rid of] right now
- Will you survive
Remember, triggering a sense of fear in your readers will only be effective if you insert your brand as the solution. Acknowledging a problem is not the same as fixing it.
Also keep in mind that you’re not trying to make your readers feel bad or guilty, but rather that there’s opportunity for improvement. By showing your brand as their safety net, you can strengthen their reliance on you.
Words and Phrases that Stir Up Anger
While fear focuses on anxiety over something that has not yet happened, anger tends to be the feeling about something undesirable that is already happening. And it gets people to take action.
A 2009 study by the University of Pennsylvania found that content that evoked anger was 38% more likely to be shared, compared to that which was awe-inspiring (34%) or anxiety-inducing (24%).
Anger also plays a role in one of the tried-and-true copywriting formulas called problem-agitate-solution. With this strategy, you vividly and thoroughly describe the key problems your prospects face, describe it some more to the point of agitation, and then present your offer as a solution.
Here are some words you can use to stir up that agitation:
- Can’t seem to
- Driving you mad
- Deal with
- Fed up with
- emotional marketing copy—example with “so are we,” “fed up”
- Had enough of
- Had it with
- Irritated by
- Reached your limit
- Sick and tired
- Sick of
- Victim | Even with consumer protection laws, many still fall victim to false advertising practices.
You’re not trying to put out provocative content that incites anger, although big brands can afford to (and do) take that risk. Rather, you’re trying to recreate the experience they don’t want so they can immediately associate your business with it as the hero.
Plus, the better you can articulate how they feel, the more they will trust that you have what they’re looking for. Even phrases like “If you’re as irritated as we are about [pain point]…” can solidify that you are in their corner. Notice how in the example above, they say “So are we.”
Words and Phrases that Trigger Curiosity
While we may have an affinity for what’s familiar to us, we actually have a strong attraction to unpredictability when it comes to rewards. In fact, our brains actually light up like a Christmas tree on an MRI in response to unpredictability. Why do you think casinos are so addicting? Because sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t, and it’s this variability that entices you to keep pursuing the outcome.
When it comes to copywriting, there’s a time and a place for curiosity. For landing pages, ads, and free trials, for example, the consumer is not looking to use their imagination to predict the outcome—they want to know exactly what to expect when they click. But for blog posts and email subject lines, curiosity can drive clicks.
Here are some words and phrases to pique the curiosity of your blog readers and email subscribers:
- Change your mind
- Choose your own adventure
- Confessions of a
- Find out/Find out why
- Hidden/hidden gems
- It’s not what you think
- No one talks about
- Secret weapon
- That you didn’t know you needed
- That you’ve been waiting for
- The last one is our favorite
- Things nobody tells you
- Wait and see
- What we found
- What do you have to lose?
- You’ll wish you knew/created/learned sooner
emotional marketing copy—example with “wish you knew sooner”
…and if you’re feeling curious on the above, here are the hacks.
- You will never guess
- You won’t believe
Use these Words to Inject Emotion into Your Marketing Copy
Evoking emotion comes easy with images, video, or through real-world interactions with your customers (hopefully not anger or fear in this case). It’s far more difficult when writing text. But you now have over 200 words you can use to write more powerful copy than your competitors and influence the behaviors of your audience.
Just make sure that you have your buyer personas nailed down—their pain points, desires, fears, and needs—and that you employ these emotions in conjunction with one another. Follow fear with confidence, anger with loyalty, and so on.
And don’t limit yourself to these five! The emotions that will be the most powerful in your marketing will vary depending on your industry and offers, and the traits of your target customers.
Here’s the full list without the images:
To your mission:
Along the way
For over X years
No matter what
Over the years
Pride ourselves on
Between you and your customers
Have stuck with us
Join X others
Like our own
See why our customers keep returning
Throughout your/our journey
Confidence in your business
Deliver | We deliver on our promise of ______.
[Eliminate problem] for good
Every single time
Rely | [X] small businesses rely on our solutions to [reach desired goal].
See who we’ve helped so far
Swear by | See why our clients swear by our [solution].
The [company name] difference/advantage
Tried and true
Trusted by over X [brands, businesses, designers, etc].
Why choose us? [then answer that]
Why [your product/service] beats [a larger competitor’s]
Confidence in your customers
Become the ____ you’ve always wanted to be.
Doubt no longer
Eliminate the guesswork
From start to finish
Got your back
Got you covered
In good hands
If you’re like most [members of niche]… (This is better than saying “It’s obvious that” or “Clearly”).
Meet you where you are
Move the needle
No matter where you’re at
Own your ______
Pull the trigger
Results you want
Say goodbye to
Take charge of
The support you need
Tips we swear by
Together we can [accomplish client’s vision]
Under our wing
Uncover the [ability/desired entity] you didn’t know you had
Walk you through
We’ll find a way
You hold the power
You’re not alone
Are you ready/prepared/equipped?
Before it’s too late
Fall victim too
Prevent [bad outcome]
Preventing | Could your habits be preventing you from achieving [desired outcome]?
Really | But are you really moving the needle?
Should | X scary stats every [target customer persona] should be aware of.
Waste | Are you wasting your time on strategies that don’t work?
What NOT to do
Why you need to [stop/get rid of] right now
Will you survive
Can’t seem to
Driving you mad
Fed up with
Had enough of
Had it with
Reached your limit
Sick and tired
Victim | Even with consumer protection laws, many still fall victim to false advertising practices.
Change your mind
Choose your own adventure
Confessions of a
Find out/Find out why
It’s not what you think
No one talks about
That you didn’t know you needed
That you’ve been waiting for
The last one is our favorite
Things nobody tells you
Wait and see
What we found
What do you have to lose?
You’ll wish you knew/created/learned sooner
You will never guess
You won’t believe
Citation: If you would like to find out more about the source of this article with over 200 words you can use for emotional marketing, see here.
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