Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Research: Using The Right Brand Improves Performance

NY Times' Consumed magazine has brought to attention a new study which proves that exposure to brands overall can have a significant effect on our performance in many aspects in life.

The example of Speedo's warm up parka that was originally designed for Michael Phelps was highlighted. The suit was initially made only for Phelps until consumer demand prompted Speedo to manufacture the jacket for purchase. Thousands have already been sold - but unlike the $550 consumer version of its LZR Racer suits that Phelps wore while swimming, the parka will not actually make people faster physically. The psychological effect is what improves the athletes' performances

Gavan Fitzsimons, a professor of marketing and psychology at Duke, elaborates on how the subliminal effect might work:

“The trick is, the first time you wore the warm-up parka,” it wouldn’t have any effect, he says. “Because you’d realise, Oh I’m being ridiculous.” Wear it often enough, though, and you’ll probably stop ruminating about it. “Below the level of conscious awareness, you’d put the jacket on, and what’s activated in your mind is maybe Michael Phelps going very fast,” he continues. “And those things could actually kick up your motivation to go faster.”

It seems to good to be true, but the power of the human mind can clearly be influenced by brands in amazing ways. Great news for brand builders, let's hope the majority of brands out there bear this thought in mind in their future campaigns.

Via: New York Times