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Thinking, Fast and Slow, in a Successful Product Campaign

by Graig Norden
on September 20, 2017

Thinking, Fast and Slow, in a Successful Product Campaign

Investment managers should consider Daniel Kahneman’s book Thinking, Fast and Slow when developing their next marketing campaign. His work detailing our brain’s capacity for reasoning explains all that could go wrong with campaigns that lack the ability to measure and learn.

For context, Mr. Kahneman detailed what he calls Systems 1 and 2 of our brain's evaluation mechanisms. System 1 is best used for instinct and storytelling. On the other hand, System 2 is required for deep thought. To demonstrate the difference, Kahneman uses a math example:  24 multiplied by 17. Presented with the task of solving this problem, System 1, your brain’s first line of defense, is quickly overwhelmed. This is demonstrated by your eyes dilating and your pulse increasing. System 2 is then called to the rescue. This is because while System 1 has fluid artistic capabilities, System 2 possess greater analytical horsepower.

Marketers have naturally relied upon System 1 to develop marketing campaigns, but this is an incomplete approach. To understand why, consider Kahneman’s words in an interview with the American Psychology Association:

System 1 is a storyteller. It tells the best stories that it can from the information available, even when the information is sparse or unreliable. And that makes stories that are based on very different qualities of evidence equally compelling. Our measure of how "good" a story is—how confident we are in its accuracy—is not an evaluation of the reliability of the evidence and its quality, it's a measure of the coherence of the story.

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Being a good storyteller is undoubtedly the hallmark of a good marketer. But without the ability to measure the efficacy of your previous efforts, you are relying on sparse information that may not indicate any evidence of quality. The accompanying chart speaks to where System 2 can help lead to more successful outcomes: measure and learn.

Digital marketing has made this possible. Measuring and learning can be achieved through evaluating  opens, shares, downloads, conversions, etc. This analytical evaluation should then inform the next round of content development. So while there will always be a need for prolific storytellers, analytical horsepower is now equally necessary.

With over 40,000 asset managers, broker-dealers, and advisors in the United States all intensely competing with one another, how can a marketing team possibly compete unless they are using both Systems 1 and 2? Harvest Exchange’s platform is a natural extension of this idea. With attribution and peer analysis reports as the centerpiece of our platform, development, distribution, measurement, and learning can be the catalyst of your next successful product marketing campaign.

Learn more about using Harvest attribution and peer analysis reports to measure and learn about your marketing efforts through our latest webinar. 

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