[Marketing Psychology] Marketing & Customer Service Utilising the 6 Core Needs

Written by on December 13, 2017

We are both marketers/sellers and customers.

As customers we are constantly bombarded with advertising and attempts to influence our buying.

When marketing it is beneficial to ourselves and our customers to appreciate that underneath the buying process is an Emotional Transaction. People buy things to feel good and they believe that what they are buying is going to improve their life in some way – short term or long term.

One significant way to improve the buying and selling experience is to ensure your message appeals to the 6 Core Human Needs. This concept utilised by successful motivational speaker, Tony Robbins, is a means of understanding human motivations and can be leveraged to enhance marketing messages and the sales process.

The 6 Core Needs are:

  1. Certainty
  2. Uncertainty/Variety/Change
  3. Significance
  4. Connection
  5. Growth
  6. Contribution

Here’s how you can incorporate this into your message and interaction with customers.

Certainty : Customers seek Certainty from you and what you are selling. They want assuredness that your product/service is going to be a great match for what their need and that it is safe for them to spend their money with you.   It’s important to build rapport with your customer and instil confidence in the relationship by ensuring your product/service meets their need and is a perfect match for what they are seeking.

Uncertainty/Variety/Change : There is a tipping scale between Certainty and Uncertainty.  The impetus to buy new things can be driven by the human need for variety or need to have a change. Underlying this need could be a desire to alleviate boredom or a creative expression.  It’s possible to meet this need by providing a variety of purchasing experiences, value adding and gifts (surprise factor) and variability in choices (colour).

Significance : Customers buy because they believe a product will make them feel more significant or important. Customers want to feel important and they want the buying process to feel meaningful to them. Let them know that they are important to you and how special it for them that they are investing in themselves or others.  Customers want to feel heard – they always have an idea of how you can serve them better but they may not be forthcoming in telling you.

Connection : Customers buy to improve their feeling of connection to themselves and to others (gifting).  When marketing you can seek to understand how they feel a sense of connection to what they are purchasing.  What does it mean to them? How will it help them feel more connected with their true selves or others?  The ability for customers to participate in discussions, forums and social groups also supports this need.

Growth/Improvement : Satisfying the need for growth is another core need.  How does your product/service help your customer feel that are growing and improving in experience, self love, experience,  emotionally, spiritually, wealth, personal growth learning from the experience. How does nourishing the other core needs help their growth as well (connection, certainty).

Contribution : A purchase can provide a long term feeling of contributing to something greater (e.g. becoming a better person to help loved ones, buying a BBQ to have weekend lunches with friends and family).

Incorporating at least 3 of these core needs into your marketing and customer service strategies will facilitate an enhanced experience for your customers and assist in creating more loyalty from them.

Put some thought into how you can help your customers fulfil their 6 Human Needs through your sales, marketing and service. I’d love to hear how you achieve this and your ideas.

Figure 1 Utilising the 6 Core Needs in Sales & Marketing by One Kinetic




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