7 Powerful Ways to Use Psychology in Digital Marketing

It is no secret — we are already in a digital world where survival is only for the online-literate. This applies in most areas, including schooling, social events and gatherings, businesses, and other formal forums. There is presently more need to engage in tactful digital planning for your teams and businesses if at all you are to arrive at your ROI. Moreover, it’s much harder to build trust online where we find a multitude of scammers than it is in person.
With that in mind, it’s necessary to implement some game-changing moves using psychology. As the science of understanding the behavior and working of the human mind grows, there is increased awareness and need to maximize the same, especially in businesses. Consider it as a two-way relationship where you are courting your customer — you have to understand their needs, ambitions, urges, tipping point, and what makes them tick if the connection is successful. Here are seven practical principles of using psychology in global marketing that will transform your digital marketing performance.

Build Trust at All Cost

One funny thing about trust is how long it takes to build it and how short it takes to demolish the structure. This cuts across the board. The stakes are even higher in the online space, where there is a sea of phishers, scammers, con artists, and fake news publishers — all seeking to take advantage of you. It can be a massive problem. Consider how many people visit free hookup sites just because they want to be loved.

As you progress, you may also make mistakes that will threaten the trust you have taken so long to build. Be quick to own up the error rather than cover it up. Seek a genuine apology from all (or the individual) customers. Finally, implement a roadmap to rectify the mistake, make amends, and offer compensation.

Ways top businesses use to rank higher on the trust barometer;

  • Displaying the number of subscribers.
  • Security badges.
  • Having several customer testimonials and ad reviews.
  • Outlining the number of social shares.
  • Client logos.
  • Placing customer success stories on display.

Foot-in-the-Door Door-in-the-Face Approach

Suppose someone comes to your house that you did not expect or didn’t want to see. If you allow them to slip a foot through the door, the highest probability is that soon enough, the whole body will be on your couch. Perhaps this is where the phrase “giving the devil a footholdcomes from.

This customer psychology in marketing suggests that you start small and build strong. Start with small requests — the kind your customer would not turn down. It could be as simple as their email address. This can be followed by subscribing to your newsletter. Before you know it, the customer will be psychologically attuned to accepting your requests and will become loyal.

Time to put on the poker face and play your best cards

However, if you’re an expert poker player, you may use reverse psychology in marketing. It’s called the door-in-the-face technique. Here, you propose an offer that’s too huge that the client will think you are chizzy. Once they turn that down, now hit lower with what you intended to request.

Appeal to Their Emotional Instincts

One assumption of a perfectly competitive market structure is that the buyers are rational beings. This could not be further from the truth. In as much as we make sound decisions from time to time, we find ourselves making more decisions that appeal to our emotional intellect than the rational being.

The examples are endless: buying a car because of a particular color, moving houses because it reminds you of your ex, eating from a particular restaurant because your father used to take you there, opting for an iPhone regardless of the cost because everyone around you has one, you name it.

Use both rational and emotional marketing. Rational marketing emphasizes the usefulness and quality of the product. It speaks to the sensible customer. Emotional psychology marketing focuses on things such as lighting, mood, and even tone to increase conversions.

That said, put more effort into creating content that reminds your readers of special moments and stirs up excitement and interest. Always seek to inspire and create thought-provoking content that sparks conversations and engagements.

Appeal to Your Customer’s Senses

Digital marketing gives you access to actively manipulate two senses — sight and sound. Once you master these, you can inactively appeal to the other senses as you build customer trust.


More businesses are now gaining awareness of the powerful impacts of using color in marketing. In a restaurant alone, managers can use colors to increase and decrease customers’ appetite, calm customers down, expand or reduce the perception of waiting time, and even enhance customers’ moods. You call it magic; we call it color psychology in marketing. You should not be surprised at the high rate of success in video marketing in the recent past.

Advertisers are now integrating color psychology with logos, images, shapes, and the appropriate psychology of font in marketing. Using the right font means considering the audience, their needs, and the purpose of your business.

In visual marketing, marketers need an in-depth understanding of the principles of gestalt psychology in marketing. These are:

  1. The Law of proximity
  2. The Law of similarity
  3. The Law of closure
  4. The Law of continuity
  5. The Law of figure/ground


Music has the power to unite, heal, make one sad, angry, radically shift one’s moods, and bind lasting customers. In the USA alone, the music industry revenues amounted to $21.5 billion in 2019. Businesses are now seeking artists to act as public figures and social influencers to their brands. But you don’t need to have an award-winning artist in your team for you to convert sales. Simple music strategies, such as using instrumentals or kids playing, amount to the psychology of music in marketing. Even an annoying ad that maximizes sound will be remembered ten years down the line.

The Depth of Processing

Humans will prize something that took them more effort to acquire. If there is a hassle on the consumer’s part to get the information (not too much hassle), they are more likely to purchase from you or consume more material from you. This is especially evident once we assess Dale’s Cone of Experience.

Arm yourself with the relevant data and the right tools

We can use two approaches to achieve this. The first is gamification, where we use a game-structure in a non-game context. This has the added advantage of eliciting a positive feeling and a winner mindset on the consumer’s part with every win.

The other strategy would be to stimulate the client’s curiosity using the information gap theory of George Loewenstein. Fill in the missing gaps by offering your customers the knowledge they have been looking for all along. A digital method of achieving this is by checking what your users are searching for on platforms such as:

  • Coschedule Headline Analyzer
  • Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer
  • Sharethrough Headline Analyzer

The Loss Aversion Theory

As humans, we are more intrigued about losing something than we are at the gains. That’s one reason not everyone can be a gambler or a poker player. If you become aware of what your customers are afraid of losing, you can structure your product to address this fear and offer some form of comfort. Maximize research tools such as Keyword Explorer, Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, KWFinder, and Talkwalker to know what your audience is searching for.

The Tribe Experience

Social distancing and isolation only came to prove one thing — no human is an island. Introverts or extroverts alike both have the urgency to belong to something bigger than themselves. This is the basic principle of tribalism. We see it in sports, political arenas, brand wars, and even on sensitive issues such as non-vax communities or environment-polluting organizations falsely using the green logo in marketing psychology.

To create a tribe, begin by publishing a manifesto. Once online, make it easy and convenient for the public to gain access and communicate with you. This calls for a high response rate. As you build trust and the community grows, make it easy for the followers to communicate with each other. A perfect example of where this has been a success is on Quora.com. Here, users ask and answer all sorts of questions from each other in minutes. Make sure you keep a tight check on your progress.

Remember This When Using Psychology in Marketing

There is one arbitrary rule in using all these customer psychology in marketing. DO NOT take advantage of the naivete of the customer. You may get them to do what you want them to several times through these psychology principles in marketing, but it shouldn’t be a trend. Remember reciprocity — always be willing to do something to them even if you don’t want anything in return. In other words, always have the customer’s best interest at heart, and you will be able to connect with them from a personal level. Now that’s active and successful digital marketing.

Share with us your experiences in the comments!

Robert Andrew Faulkner is a family and child psychologist. He has been working with many couples from all the UK and wants to share his experience with you. Robert’s hobbies are reading new psychology books and traveling around the world. He has visited more than 15 countries, including France, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, etc. One of Robert’s biggest dreams is to climb Mount Everest and take a photo. More info about Robert and his thoughts can be found on one of his free hookup sites.

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