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Consumer Intelligence: satisfaction vs. dis-satisfaction: Enchanting consumer’s ego

Consumer Intelligence: satisfaction vs. dis-satisfaction: Enchanting consumer’s ego

Marketing is not about our perceptions of customers satisfaction (one dimensional perspective), but it is about the affective response of dissatisfying experiences displayed by the customer.

Dissatisfaction is often triggered earlier than satisfaction and leaves longer scars. Hence customers retain negative feelings on extended period of time with regards to certain brands or services longer that satisfaction. While a satisfied customer tell s two friends, a dissatisfied customer propagates their dissatisfaction to millions on their networks.

Eliminating dissatisfaction from the equation does not automatically lead to satisfaction. Hence satisfaction and dissatisfaction as two distinct dimensions. These two perspectives have adopted new generators, one called customer motivation and the other called customer de-harmonization often equated with exceptionally negative customer experience. Due to perceived benefits, customer dis-satisfaction consumes and destroys customer trust in companies and brands that continue to play futile mind games with truth and transparency continue to self-sabotage infinitely.

It’s me, about me and nothing else but me

Customer is always king”: the boomerang of ego-centric Consumer: (The first cerebral stimuli:  It is all about the quest for the self-affirmation in the brand, not the brand itself)

Egotism is characterized by a tendency to redirect and short-cut everything to oneself. It mainly focuses on self-interests, considers self-opinion as most relevant and views oneself as the person to follow and admire. Hence this is what ¨we do on a daily basis: follow and admire. Coca Cola is a prime model of consumer ego-focus strategy that for decades seemed to nourish this particular salient narcissism successfully.

‘’The future of marketing is our egotism enchantment ’’ It’s all about personalization, rationalization and ego- enchantment of the new consumer.

”For decades, brands want consumers to adhere to their “values.” Today, they’re counting on consumers and on their “identity” to convey our values through their message’’ the consumer

How can this be successfully achieved?

In an era where “selfie-on-steroid” the augmented consumer has taken center stage, the ego is emerging in marketing but with a much more aggressive demeanor. Hence, consumers are acquiring more and more power and behavior to become increasingly complex to analyze.

Traditional marketing is faced with its own uphill staging to undertake and understand these new altitudes of cognitive consumerism. Their otherness and singularity are extending beyond logic attesting that they are no longer a target practice but require new intelligent sharpshooters to equate with their forever rising intricacy. 

If brands purpose is to motivate consumers to react favorably, isn’t logic to understand how this catalyst in consumer’s brain behaves? Hence, to engage the brain is to understand the brain

Consumer’s brain only reacts to messaging efficacy of the brand. When messaging accesses the brain pathway with salient and coherent communication style, it activates the IRF (Impulse Response Function) which in turn causes the neurons to multiply and create a unique forest of connections and it is these electric connections that cause a flood of dopamine which stimulates our brains (left-right) to react favorably to various communication styles (visual/verbal).

As our brains are unique to us, communication that is to create favorable results must communicate to us in a unique style salient to our brain pathways. Failure to do so, sends the brain to arbitrary chaos. Hence, nothing that is generated in the brain is arbitrary; everything is perfectly organised and uniquely designed to react to inbound stimuli differently.

Today’s brand double challenge

Inviting singularity in their universe perpetuates the supremacy of their models. Where once the sense of belonging was enough to motivate the act of purchase (“I consume Apple products because I am an active third sector evolving urban”, “I wear Levi’s jeans as I am receptive to values of freedom and rebellion conveyed by the mark “).

Today brands are facing a new reality; the uniqueness of identity of each consumer. A new multi color contextualization that requires a doctrine in consumer intelligencebehavioral intelligence and cognitive communication intelligence. As the era of brain perpetually races forward, brands can no longer depend on classic marketing to extract the nectar of profits, they now require cognitive-based marketing to foster highest altitudes of profitability.  

Is customization dodging us or flatter our ego to give us the feeling of being important?

In 2010, I decided to explore this subject on a much deeper level to better appreciate the psychology behind it in the wish to share with you why the ego plays such key role in the buying process today. In the quest for fortification of this vital fact, I stumbled upon this fascinating literature “The Ego psychology” source: New York universities studies.

The original document (Erikson) below explains in much greater specifics the implication of various aspects of the ego behavior in today’s social arena and its implication in a variety of process stages.

Imagine knowing the client’s favourite chocolate prior to their arrival (Telepathy branding: coming soon)

Origin of the ego

Where it all began:

Experience with a partner, usually a mother, allows for some modulation of intensity. Repeated experiences establish memory traces. Interaction with a mother allows the child to put these memories to work in the service of the ego.

He or she learns to become an agent in his or her world, not just a passive recipient of its gifts or pains. three organizing principles in the development of the ego are identified:

The smiling response

Usually at about age 3 months, the child begins to smile in the presence of pleasant stimuli. (Emotional)

Stranger anxiety

At about 8 months, most children express distress in the presence of unfamiliar others. (Pain)

Semantic communication

This function is evident is in the ability to say “no.” Doing so, the child takes the first steps in identifying with the aggressor, turning passivity into active control. Learning to communicate by speaking, the child comes to relinquish the fantasy of perfect nonverbal communication (Trust) Erikson and the Epigenetic Model Source: Erik Erikson (1902–1994)

1.   Basic trust vs. basic mistrust

For the first year of life, the child learns that the world is a trustworthy place and that he or she is also trustworthy. Failure to achieve this end leaves the developing child with a sense of insecurity and an inability to trust 

2. Autonomy vs. shame and doubt

From about ages 1 to 3, the developing nervous system affords the opportunity to walk, retain faces, and exert all sorts of self-control. The child can practice leaving the mother and returning. But these attempts are not always successful, and failures can lead to self-doubt and shame.

3. Initiative vs. Guilt

From about ages 3 to 6, the growing child attempts to exert influence and follow the leads of curiosity, using his or her budding cognitive and motor skills.

4. Industry vs. Inferiority

During the latency years, about ages 6–12, the child is turning away from parents and toward peers as objects of identification. He or she will seek to excel at sports, school, or other childhood endeavours. The reward is the satisfaction of accomplishment and success. The risk is a failure; the child who is benched at softball or who scores a “C” on a math test may learn to feel inferior.

5- Identity vs. identity diffusion

During puberty and adolescence, the teen is asking, “Who am I?” and constantly revising the question 

The answer, a common solution during these years is to assert one’s independence by acting, dressing, and talking like everyone else in one’s peer group. Identification is an important tool for establishing identity, but it raises the threat of diffusing that sense of individuality.

6-Intimacy vs. isolation

In young adulthood, the task is to attain a sense of emotional, sexual, and spiritual maturity with a view toward social responsibility. But intimacy carries risks. People are often hurt in trying to establish closeness with others, and if they fail to adapt successfully, they may be inclined to retreat into emotional isolation.

7-Generativity vs. self-absorption

Middle age is marked by a different kind of questioning, centring on one’s place in the larger scheme of life. in essence, generativity describes a self-contained system from which its user draws an independent ability to create. At the opposite pole is a view that one’s life is completely self-contained and finite. Most often, this crisis is played out in raising one’s children, but generativity can be accomplished through philanthropy, teaching, entrepreneurship, or other avenues.

 8- Integrity vs. despair

In the closing phase of life, one ideally comes to a sense of balance between owning responsibility for his or her choices and accepting the fate that one has been dealt. Erkison’s descriptions of integrity, drawn from observations across cultures, render a richly-textured view of spiritual connections with past and future. The task of achieving this goal is daunting and one is threatened with a sense of futility and isolation in the face of impending mortality.


How do we serve today’s consumer egotism ruse-free

through cognitive intelligence?


There are six stimuli embedded in our cerebral operating system. Once we’ve understood them, and segmented them by generation, we reach the highest elevation of consumer motivation. Hence, there is a delicate fine line between persuasion=ruse and motivation= to genuinely connect on a deeper level of intimacy.

For decades, marketing seemed to employ a ruse disguised as motivation to connect. Today, more than ever, the new consumer is equipped with the most efficient and sophisticated polygraph that is becoming a cultural tool to hedge against subversive marketing circus.

To better comprehend this new connectivity, we must STEER AWAY from the ever-increasing polluted cloned copy: he says it, me too. All this does is diminishes the integrity of one’s approach. We don’t have to go far to notice that today’s advertising copy often echoes alike. Be it a television infomercial, a radio racket, or a TV commercial, most seem emotionless and mechanically recited. Being a consumer, exposed to such emotionless recitals, can we safely say that our level of trust in the brands had reached ground zero?

When we strip ourselves from emotion, and employ our logic (ego), the message as well as the messenger seem to have reached lowest point of logic dissipation consequently kills the brand credibility they represent and our trust all together.

How do we connect with consumer’s egotism?

Danger of HYPER personnalisation 

Today, brands seek to offer more and more value-added by giving consumers the opportunity to live a unique new experiences. There is nothing more enchanting to consumer than making them believe that they are UNIQUE however, mass customization initiatives have continued to touch all sectors. Now, the consumer is reflected with a new logic that is: I am proud that the brand has designed a product just for me, so that I can exhibit and advocate it in my own way as brand ambassador,

Like any other trends, when customization is blindly cloned, it loses its effect  and ultimately becomes non-credible. Consumers, as mentioned earlier in the document, had become immune to traps and mal-intentioned demeanors.

Connecting on a deeper level with a consumers and merit their trust, which requires more than decorating a bottle, staging an event, or a facebook likes to reflect customization that reflects common sense of the brain (rational: ego) synchronized with the other five cerebral stimuli turn customization into experience, that is to say experience is felt by our emotional hemisphere (the limbic system). When consumer rational and emotional conductors are activated, they create a dopamine rush into the brain neural system that begin to web a crazy-glue forests of affinity with the brand .

Index of post-purchase customer’s dissatisfaction

Dissatisfaction is measuring the intent-to-return

After the purchase, the consumer might experience dissonance about their purchase and be alert to information that supports their decision. Marketing and communication professionals should supply beliefs and evaluations that reinforce the consumer’s choice and help him feel good about the brand. Hence, the latter must monitor post-purchase satisfaction and post-purchase actions and put in place a monitoring process to ensure customer fulfillment is achieved and surpassed.

  • A study in the Harvard Business Review showed that just a 5 percent increase in customer retention boosts profits by 25 percent to 125 percent;
  • IBM in Rochester, Minn., calculates that a 1 percent increase in customer satisfaction is worth $257 million in additional revenues over five year
  • Marriott found that each percentage point increased in the customer-wide satisfaction measure of intent-to-return was worth some $50 million in revenues;
  • ·   Customers are three times more likely than service providers to recall the quality of the personal element in a transaction.
  • 70-85% of dissatisfaction is due to customer service not product; 68% of customers who stop buying do so because they perceive an employee as discourteous or indifferent;
  • Dissatisfied customers on average tell 12 friends of the poor service; satisfied people tell 5 friends;
  • The average business loses 10-30% of its customers each year (without knowing which, when or why lost);
  • For every complaint there are an estimated 25 unnoted complaints;
  • People who complain are generally younger, have higher incomes, are better educated, have more experience with the product, are less brand loyal, and may have higher expectations;
  • Quick resolution results in higher satisfaction & loyalty than multiple contacts