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Brian Miller, ex Saatchi and Saatchi Creative Director, had taken ten years out from advertising. On his return he found that the internet had become an enormous emotional experience. But that agencies were still ploughing the age old furrow of USP’s, tone of voice and single-minded proposition. Having spent his decade away as a partner with an award-winning research company, Brian turned to market research to understand the disconnect between ‘what consumers are looking for’ and ‘what agencies are producing’.

The research asked 5000 people to talk about the brand they connected with and whose content they sought out. The results were convincingly consistent. Traditional advertising, practiced by the many, still went after ‘share of mind’, the idea being to get you to associate a brand with a single idea; Volvo: safety, Coke: happiness, The Economist: success. However, Brian discovered that popular brands had multi-faceted personalities. They could make you laugh or cheer, or lean forward and take notes. They’d stopped hammering away at ‘share of mind’ and were expanding to achieve ‘share of emotion’. It’s clear that brands in the internet age need to behave more like us. One brand, but many ways of speaking, behaving and connecting.

Brian Miller is a founder of The Emotional Intelligence Agency

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