21 March 2006

Brands are not people

Brand developers often describe brands using adjectives that might typically be used to describe people e.g. warm, caring, laddish etc., the idea being that customers are likely to respond to these human qualities, signalled through brand communications. Researchers at University of Michigan and Harvard have looked at people's brain activity when the same adjectives are used to describe people they know or brands; and found that distinct and different areas of the brain are stimulated for people and brands, even when the same human descriptors are used. So it seems people aren't fooled into thinking of brands as people. Phew, that's a relief then.

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