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What Are You Buying For?

By October 30, 2009Brand, Budgets, Marketing

With the economy in a state of recession, many consumers are paying close attention to product pricing and contemplating the switch from brand name to generic. Marie Callender’s and Campbell’s Soup are two notable brands using emotional marketing tactics to target consumers. Attempting to maintain brand loyalty, advertisers create meaning for their products by marketing to the emotions of their consumers. This method, called “pseudo-spiritual” marketing, emerged in the 1990’s and with the recession has gained popularity once again. Now consumers aren’t buying for the necessity; they are buying for the emotional appeal of a product.

Marie Callender’s partnered with Con-Agra foods to produce an array of home-style frozen food entrees including chicken pot pie, lasagna, and country fried chicken. Marketers reach out emotionally to consumers attempting to recreate feelings associated with the home and childhood memories. Marie Callender’s hopes consumers will pair compassion and love with their entrees. This is obvious with their slogan, “food from the heart prepared with love and care.” Creating a meaning behind their products helps to build communities of loyal consumers, who won’t stray to generic brands when times are tough.

In this commercial Marie Callender’s uses the childhood memory of baking with Grandmother as a “pseudo-spiritual” tactic.

Campbell’s has been an avid “pseudo-spiritual” marketer since the beginning. Their commercials generate themes of family, love, and meal-time connection. One of their most memorable uses of “pseudo- spiritual” marketing is this popular holiday television commercial.

Similar to Marie Callender’s strategy, Campbell’s has successfully utilized “pseudo-spiritual” marketing to generate strong emotional connections between products and consumers. Both companies continue to maintain their sales and brand loyalty. So next time you pick a brand name over generic, you may want to ask yourself, “why?”

Kara Marshall
Kara Marshall is currently interning with Steel Advertising and Interactive, Inc. Recently she graduated from Texas State University with a degree in Mass Communication. She has a passion for marketing, public relations, and all things media related. She can be reached by e-mail at karaemarshall@gmail.com.