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You’ve developed a product or service.  You’ve been marketing it and selling it.  And sales are plugging along.  But how do you get a real boost in sales?

As we all know, it can be hard to take sales to the next level.  The good news is that a sizeable lift in sales is very achievable—especially when you use human psychology to your advantage.

In marketing, one of our greatest tools is psychology research, which teaches us what makes people buy some products while ignoring others.  So how do you get people to want to buy your product or service?  The concept is simple.

According to research going back decades, humans place a premium on beauty—and they equate beauty with quality. The fact that people prefer things that are beautiful has nothing to do with self-interest so much as it has to do with instinct.

As described in an August 2012 study published in The Journal of Consumer Research (Oxford University Press), “Just as good looks bestow an unconscious ‘beauty premium’ on people, high aesthetics bestow an unrecognized benefit on consumer goods. Specifically, choosing a product with good design affirms the consumer’s sense of self.”

The study went on to confirm research going back almost a century that found that beauty overwhelmed far more practical considerations, particularly when selecting a product.  Yes, people chose inferior products that looked good over better products that did not appeal to their aesthetic senses.

Case in Point

Consider this: Apple became renowned for the beauty of its industrial design, even though competitors created products that seemed more practical at the time.  When the iPod came out, competing products emerged that were bursting with function-specific buttons. Still, consumers chose the clean beauty of the Apple design.  The modern smartphone is all about ergonomic simplicity. That’s because Apple created the aesthetic standard and reaped the benefits of the beauty premium.


Studies affirm what most marketers have long known – that people buy things and services that look or sound good to them, and they feel good about themselves when they do so.

The implications of this research are profound for the business world.  By simply improving your branding and marketing materials, you can suddenly gain far greater favor with prospects.  Seems too easy, right?

That’s because it is easy.  The hard part is being able to look at your company’s branding and marketing materials with an aesthetic eye, and then determining whether your image is eliciting the right reactions from prospects.  Most people have a hard time judging their own branding, so they can benefit greatly from the input of professional marketers.

A quick way to know if your branding needs a face-lift?  Answer these questions:

1. Was your website, brochure or logo created by an IT developer, friend or another individual who doesn’t specialize in design?

2. Does your exhibit booth, sales presentation, website or brochure seem unremarkable?

If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, you have just identified a huge opportunity for growth.

A Game-Changer

When companies come to the realization that a simple investment in their brand image and marketing can forever change the growth trajectory of their company, it’s a game-changer.  By creating a sharp brochure, a great website, or by giving your logo a much-needed face-lift, you can leave your competition in the dust.  Suddenly, there are more people interested in your company, prospects are paying closer attention to you and deals are closing far faster.

After all, as much as we’d like to choose purely based on substance, beauty is an undeniably strong factor in our selections.  Arming yourself with this knowledge and using it to your advantage is a smart strategy with long-lasting results.

If you’d like to see what improving your image could do for your company, we’d be happy to help. We can be reached at We will give you an honest evaluation on where you are – and where you could be.

By Rosalie Berg, President, Strategic Vantage