Using the Principles of Neuroscience to Win Attention

Using the Principles of Neuroscience to Win Attention

As many know, our advances in science have revolutionized nearly every industry. We find that in all niche of life, science has an application that will give us the micro edge we need when things are most competitive.

In this post, the science we will be focusing on is neuroscience and its applications to personal branding.

Neuroscience is a growing and absolutely fascinating niche under the tree of biology. As a hobbyist of neuroscience and a major advocate of personal branding, I am bullish on the benefits of its application in this space.

I had the fortunate pleasure of attending the 2016 Inbound Conference, hosted by HubSpot, which had a phenomenal speaker who really changed the game for me.

The speaker's name was Tom Shapiro, who is the CEO & Founder of Stratabeat and the Founder of the Boston Neuromarketing Group.

Tom gave a talk on using neuroscience to his business where there was a mountain of actionable gems and takeaways that could be applied to your personal brand.

But first, let's make sure we are on the same page. What even is neuroscience?

Neuroscience is the study of the nervous system, how it develops and its structure. Neuroscientists take this information and most commonly learn how it impacts behavior and cognitive functions. It is a subdivision of biology and in modern science it is very interdisciplinary, overlapping with math, medicine, computer science and much more.

After a few weekends more of digging into the idea of neuroscience applied to personal branding, here are my greatest takeaways.

Applying Neuroscience To Your Personal Brand

1. Focus On Emotions

A study conducted by Antonio Damasio, a neuroscientist & professor at USC, found that individuals with damage to the part of the brain that triggers emotion had an excruciatingly difficult time making simple decisions.

This is because our brain is wired to make decisions instinctively based on our emotions.

Additionally, a study of companies conducted by Google in 2011 found that companies branded with an emotional aesthetic have double the impact than a similar company branded with little emotion.

What this means for you as an individual is that if you are not evoking emotion out of your audience, you are in literally making it more difficult for someone to listen to you.

My greatest recommendation is to do something out of the ordinary. Break rules and push the limit. Let me cite Donald Trump. He is the master of evoking emotion.

He pushed the limit and broke the rules. Lots of people hate him. But lots of people were emotional evoked by him.

Think about your personal brand. How can you reevaluate your message?

2. Win With Video

As Tom shared, we see with our brains. It was reported by 3M that our brain processes visuals 60,000x faster than what we do with reading.

To further validate the power of our eyes, in the popular book, Brain Rules by John Medina he outlines a study that may shock some. A study conducted in the wine capital of the world, Bordeaux, France, 54 accomplished sommeliers were sat down and given a glass of red wine. 

As you can imagine, the big trick is that it was a particular white wine, dyed with odorless red dye.

Shockingly enough, all 54 of the sommeliers mistook the wine to be red.

Try that at your next dinner party.

This, of course, is to take nothing away from the value in text or verbal, but as an individual, you need to measure how much of your message and emotion is being received by your audience.

I would love to jump into the logistics of using video for your personal brand, but that's a deep dive.

In the meantime, check out this piece on using Facebook Video, it'll further validate why you need to be using video!


3. Your Body Language is Your Brand

According to VeryWell, body language is thought to account for between 50 to 70 percent of all communication.

Here are some tips from the experts:

  • Stand 4 to 6 feet away in social settings - this distance is the social norm for events and will make your partner comfortable.

  • Rapid eye blinking - this is a signal of discomfort or distress.

  • Tapping fingers or fidgeting - this can be a sign of boredom, time to stop talking about your metrics.

  • Crossed arms - this tends to be a defensive stance, this person could feel threatened by you or someone else.

  • Pursed lips - this can be an indicator of distaste or distrust.

  • When two people are getting along, they tend to mirror postures and movements.

Be mindful this is just a peek into the basics of body language. There are entire books and professions made out of this, of which I highly recommend checking out.

Just as with all things in this piece, neuroscience is a complex field that is ever evolving. There are voluminous amounts of research out there of which I urge all those interested in their personal brand to engage within your available time.

We all know we must be ever learning in this fast paced environment and adopting science-based techniques early on can prove to be the winning edge when it matters most.

Happy branding.

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