At the most basic level, any organisation can begin a structured process of learning about its customers’ emotional motivators and conducting experiments to leverage them, later scaling up from there.

At the other end of the spectrum, organisations can invest in deep research and big data analytics or engage consultancies with specific expertise. Companies in financial services, retail, health care, and technology are now using a detailed understanding of emotional connection to attract and retain the most valuable customers.

The most sophisticated firms are making emotional connection part of a broad strategy that involves every function in the value chain, from product development and marketing to sales and service.

Hundreds of “emotional motivators” drive consumer behavior. Below are 10 that significantly affect customer value across all categories studied.

Stand out from the crowd

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers project a unique social identity; be seen as special

Have confidence In the future

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers perceive the future as better than the past; have a positive mental picture of what’s to come

Enjoy a sense of well-being

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers feel that life measures up to expectations and that balance has been achieved; seek a stress-free state without conflicts or threats

Feel a sense of freedom

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers act independently, without obligations or restrictions

Feel a sense of thrill

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers experience visceral, overwhelming pleasure and excitement; participate in exciting, fun events

Feel a sense of belonging

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers have an affiliation with people they relate to  or aspire to be like; feel part of a group

Protect the environment

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers sustain the belief that the environment is sacred; take action to improve their surroundings

Be the person I want to be

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers fulfill a desire for ongoing self-improvement; live up to their ideal self-image

Feel secure

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers believe that what they have today will be there tomorrow; pursue goals and dreams without worry

Succeed in life

Brands can leverage this motivator by helping customers feel that they lead meaningful lives; find worth that goes beyond financial or socioeconomic measures