Review: #Hooked

Why do we buy what we buy? Is it psychological? Is communication actually a science? Patrick Fagan explores ‘why cute sells and other marketing magic that we just can’t resist’ in #Hooked. This is the first marketing type book I’ve read which is more about the research side with charts, graphs and studies, and also one of the most interesting marketing books I’ve read. Here are my three main takeaways:

Know your audience

It’s the golden rule of marketing that you need to know who your audience is if you want to communicate with them effectively. How do your audience prefer to be spoken to? Is it that they’re more engaged with email campaigns or social media memes? Knowing what messages and how to get those messages across to your audience are necessary to get people to buy into both your brand as well as your products.

The importance of storytelling

Emotions are motivators. We love hearing stories (whether fictional or non-ficitional) and it’s how we connect with people, remember details and learn. Brands who have a meaningful story about how they were founded or about a certain product tend to stick out more in people’s brains than those who don’t have a story to tell.

Direct mail is still a relevant form of marketing?

As someone who primarily works with digital marketing, I don’t really have much experience with print marketing and it’s not really something I think about. Fagan points out, “On the whole, despite there being a lot of it, and consumer perceptions generally being unfavourable, direct marketing is relatively effective”. I thought this was quite surprising, although if a piece of direct mail is unusual in its design or surprises the recipient it will be received quite well – and I guess it’s more exciting than having bills delivered!

Parting thoughts: If you’ve read this book, what did you think? Leave me a comment below or tweet me @musingsandmktg! You can catch up with other marketing related books I’ve reviewed here.

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