Does emotional advertising sell more product?

Budweiser-Puppy-Love-commercial-jpgThe Super Bowl is  approaching quickly and some of the commercials are already going viral.  The one being talked about the most is the”Puppy Love” spot for Budweiser and although it’s a great spot is it going to help sell more Budweiser beer?

I am not a Budweiser customer because I prefer small craft products instead when I do have a beer.  It seems that year after year we talk about the Budweiser spots, but when I ask people if they are going to purchase Bud their answer is usually “no”.

Emotional branding refers to the practice of building brands that appeal directly to a consumer’s ego, emotional state, needs and aspirations. The purpose of emotional branding is to create a bond between the consumer and the product by provoking the consumer’s emotion. But can emotional branding, lead to more sales?


Christie Barakat says that while traditional emotional branding, consumer decision-making models are grounded in the theory of rational choices and are largely cognitive and sequential in nature. Emotional branding is irrational. Simply playing somber music against images of people struggling without a particular product can trigger an irrational connection by playing on a consumer’s sadness.

However, there are a lot of brands to which customers form emotional attachments.  Apple computer users, for example, love to put Apple decals on their cars and the people who own Trek Bikes often have a lot of Trek branded accessories.  But when it comes to things like soda and beer do consumers really want an emotional attachment?

I’m sure the Budweiser puppy spot will be talked about for many weeks after it airs and that could be considered a success, but with marketers being held accountable for every dollar spent one wonders how much longer they can make their ads cute rather than driving the bottom line?

The answer is that this spot is part of building an emotional brand, but frankly the people I see drinking Bud’s are not exactly the emotional types.  Still, with so much skepticism and pessimism around advertising, it’s good to see a spot we don’t mind watching again and again.

About richmeyer

Rich is a passionate marketer who is able to quickly understand what turns a prospect into a customer. He challenges the status quo and always asks "what can we do better"? He knows how to take analytics and turn them into opportunities and he is a great communicator.

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2 Comments on “Does emotional advertising sell more product?”

  1. I think emotional ads would work if its targeted and implemented correctly. I mean, I think your right, I don’t think normal bud drinkers would relate to this specific ad. If they were to film a bunch of blue collar workers drinking beer at a small town bar, then it would be a different story.

    At least they got rid of those stupid frogs

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