I first heard of the idea of a 'lizard brain' from the former UFC fighter Dan Hardy on the London Real podcast. He was talking about it in the context of trying to become a more instinctive (and ruthless) fighter... But the idea extends far beyond combat sports... It's actually really useful when you're in the marketing game too.

This is the part of the brain that is in charge when we decide we want to purchase something... We nearly always buy emotionally and use logic and reason to justify this decision afterwards.

A good example of this is when we buy a new car - We 'want' it because it may go faster than our current car, or maybe it's more luxurious or will make us appear 'cooler' (increase our status).

Once we've decided we actually want it, we look at things like fuel efficiency, emissions and other 'dry data' like that to convince ourselves that we've made a good decision. Very few people buy cars because of raw data alone... It's almost always linked to an emotional desire.

You should try to lead your marketing message with an emotion. Start by describing a pain that your customer is familiar with which you can take away. Or maybe you could talk about the goals and dreams that you can help them achieve... Either way, make them FEEL something.

Then after you've got their attention, follow up with facts and data to support your message... This information IS useful, but only once you've captured someone's attention.

All too often I see brands leading with features and benefits when what the customer is interested in is how their life will be improved. The technical data may seem appealing to us as business owners, but when we present this at the wrong time, it's likely to lose the sale.

This Sunday I'm talking about storytelling for brands and how you can use a tried and tested structure to improve the effectiveness of your marketing. Get this delivered to your inbox for FREE by signing up here.