Karen Fewell shares her insights to 'Emotional decision making and how it affects your business on and offline'.

At Farm Shop & Deli Live on Tuesday 19 April we'll be welcoming Karen Fewell, owner of agency @DigitalBlonde and the Food Marketing School, for her ‘Social Media and the Psychology of Food Marketing’ session.

Ahead of the show, Karen has kindly shared below some of her insights and tips on this topic with us:

95% of all human decisions are subconsciously made – that’s a recent statistic from this Year’s South By South West conference. This means that almost all of our decisions are not the logical, rational choices we often assume they are. We’re making quick decisions emotionally and then rationalising them afterwards. This statistic almost certainly applies to our food purchasing and consumption decisions. In fact, we make on average around 200 decisions about food each day, the majority of which are subconscious.

Making an emotional connection

What does all of this mean for food producers and retailers? It shows us that there’s a clear need to reach customers on an emotional level. Without making this emotional connection you’ll struggle to get past the unconscious decision making process that happens in the brain. Of course, there is a lot that goes into making this kind of connection. In store and in person it could be friendly customer service, appealing displays or stories about where produce comes from. These all help give your customers a positive emotional experience – but how do you achieve this online, when you’re not face to face with customers? This is where social media can be a great tool, helping you to establish a connection with consumers and differentiate you from competitors.

It’s never been so easy or so challenging

You could argue it’s never been easier to reach consumers thanks to social media, mobile phones, apps and the multiple methods of communication they offer. However, I would argue that it’s equally true to say that it has never been harder to reach people either. The reality online is that there are a lot of food businesses vying for consumers’ attention and you face a lot of competition if you want your content to even be seen. That’s where genuine engagement and making an emotional connection will help you. By focusing your social efforts on growing a community, rather than trying to achieve short term sales success, you’ll be building real long term relationships.

Social Media and the Psychology of Food Marketing

My talk at the Farm Shop & Deli show, entitled ‘Social Media and the Psychology of Food Marketing’ will explore the different ways that social media can help you reach consumers emotionally. I’ll be sharing research and insights into the consumers’ emotional connections to food and how these can be applied to social media and marketing. There will be more thought provoking statistics from the world of psychology and marketing too. For example, did you know it’s possible to love a brand more than your loved ones? It’s surprising but science has found this to be true. Love for food brands and what goes into this is another discussion point for my talk.

The session promises to be a lively, inspiration-packed occasion with ideas and learnings for a range of food businesses to take away. I hope to see you all at ‘Social Media and the Psychology of Food Marketing’ on Tuesday 19th April, at 3.15pm at the Farm Shop & Deli Show.