What is Cognitive Marketing and Why Should You Be Using It?


Marketing Insights for ProfessionalsThe latest thought leadership for Marketing pros

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Cognitive marketing helps to form a connection between brands and customers that can influence buying behavior and loyalty when used correctly.

Article 4 Minutes
What is Cognitive Marketing and Why Should You Be

One of the most successful ways for marketers to entice customers to make a purchase or use a service from a specific brand is to form a connection with them. Connections help to inspire brand loyalty, advocacy and conversions, but they are not always easy to create.

Cognitive marketing is one of the best ways to connect with a customer on a personal level. It essentially uses what people are already thinking about in a positive way to give a brand a position that reflects the customer's position. This helps the customer to see a similarity between themselves and the brand, helping to form a strong connection.

This is much easier to do now due to the technology at your fingertips, with advances in artificial intelligence (AI) making it simple to analyze data collected online to highlight the target audience and see what issues will resonate with customers the best. On top of this, cognitive technology offers the ability to cover several channels simultaneously, improving campaign visibility and better forging customer connections.

With cognitive marketing being so effective and now much easier to make the most of, marketers need to be including it in their strategies to create campaigns that fully target the intended audiences. Here are just a few reasons why this is the case:

Puts the full focus on the customer

Cognitive marketing is all about the customer and so the focus of campaigns that use this method is on the target audience. This ensures that campaigns are fully targeted and as effective as they can be, removing other influences that could affect how well the brand-to-customer connection is forged.

"What cognitive does is help marketers focus less on tedious day-to-day tasks and more in the bigger picture, delighting the customer. Today, marketers spend nearly 70 per cent of their time on mundane details and just 30 per cent strategizing and creating experiences for customers." - Harriet Green, general manager of Watson Internet of Things, and Commerce and Education at IBM


If the basis for a campaign is the customer and their data is analyzed and used at each stage of its creation, not only is there a better chance of creating a connection, it will likely result in a stronger one, which has numerous benefits for a brand.

Creates more effective campaigns

Customers look to advertising and brands to help fulfil a need to be emotionally satisfied by products, notes Business 2 Community. Humans look for things that will help them meet their emotional needs, which means marketers should ensure they are speaking to what customers really want and not what to what they think they want.

Focusing campaigns on problems that aren't based on real customer experiences can ultimately lead to a lack of brand loyalty as customers are more likely to impulse buy products that they don't actually need. This can result in negative feelings towards a brand and limit repeat purchases, as well as damage advocacy.

Instead, cognitive marketing allows for the creation of campaigns that follow the path customers do in order to fill their emotional needs. You can base campaigns on problems that not only exist but are already in the consciousness of target customers, offering a solution that is required and boosting positive sentiment. This ultimately makes sure campaigns are more effective from initial contact, right through to purchase or repurchase.

Simplifies personalization

One of the best ways to make marketing campaigns more effective is to personalize them to each member of your target audience. This is one area where AI and cognitive technologies really come into play, as you can use real online behavior to better segment your audience and so alter your message for each group.

Econsultancy explains that this works much better than traditional demographics that marketers use to segment an audience, as the groups are based on real behavior rather than implied data. Although some groups may be similar to more traditional demographics, this will not always be the case, allowing for a more targeted campaign.

Once you have audience groups, cognitive technology can be used to redesign a message depending on which group an individual belongs to. This means the message is entirely based on their actual behavior, helping to better create a connection and see improved results.

Not only does this mean a customer is getting the right message, they will also receive it at the right time and in the best way for them. This ensures it is easier for them to fully process and that what they are seeing is relevant and so will pique their interest. This whole process is a much more effective method than generalizing customers into groups based on age, gender and location, allowing you to ensure that advertising really hits its mark.

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