This case study explains one simple fact – you can not grow a business without understanding and aligning the strategies with consumers’ emotional motivators.

Why are the emotional motivators so important? They drive consumers’ purchase decision.

Consumers’ emotional motivators can be –


  • An urge for attaining freedom

  • An urge for attaining financial independence

  • A need for saving time

  • A desire to feel special

  • Need for convenience

  • A sense of trust

  • Expectation of an excellent after-sale service


and many others.

For me, ’trust’ is an important emotional motivator.

I will never quickly buy food item from a new brand if I didn’t hear about it earlier, use it or read about it anywhere.

For you may be, convenience or the desire to save time is more important. So you might not hesitate to buy the same product if it saves your time or offers some excellent convenience.

The emotional motivators for different audience segments will be different.

So this article shares the case study of a fashion retailer who addressed their target consumers’ emotional motivators and improved sales significantly.


Case Study


The Problem


The fashion retailer’s same-store sale was stagnant. No growth. Only disappointment.

It was a well-known brand. It already had a strong market presence.

Now you might be thinking, what the heck could be wrong with such a well-established brand that it could not manage to grow its annual sales?

Well, the retailer also did not understand the problem.

Therefore, when they tried to improve the numbers with a focus on cost management, logistics efficiency, and merchandise, none of them made any significant impact.

So they hired professionals to unearth the cause of the problem.


Research, Findings, and Decisions


Experts found out that the retailer already had an audience segment that used to buy products from them now and then.

These audience segment accounted for 37% of their revenue and spent twice as much annually as any other customers.

Further investigation revealed that these customers used to shop with a desire for social acceptance, self-expression, and excitement.

When the experts narrowed their research down on this particular consumer segment, they discovered their detailed profile.


  • This customer segment used to shop more often than the average.

  • They were less price sensitive.

  • They were young females who wanted to live in urban centers.

  • They were more digitally engaged than other customer segments.


Researchers pulled out all of their data and analysis, and showed three key emotional motivators for this audience segment  – “the feel of belonging,” “the feel of freedom” and “the feel of thrill.”

The problem was that the retailer failed to tap into these emotional motivators. They didn’t take measures to improve these customers’ shopping experience. So they could not grow sales.

So now, the business had to build strategies and focus investments on four key areas – stores, online and Omni channel experience, message targeting and merchandising.




1. They Changed Their Store Location Strategy


They found out locations with high concentration of the target audience segment. They built and relocated stores targeting those sites.

The result? The first year sales from the stores on those new locations were 20% higher than the previous averages.


2. The Retailer Encouraged Selfie Sharing On Social Media. They Later Displayed Selfie Slides On Large Screens. 


The measure directly addressed the emotional motivator – “The sense of belonging” and improved target customers’ purchase intention.


3. The Company Invested in Omnichannel and Online Shopping Experience


4. They Invested In Personalized Messages to Drive Target Audiences’ Behavior


Knowing that there target audience was more active on Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, they built new marketing programs for those platforms.

They now send direct emails to their target audience based on the stage of the shopping journey.

The results were remarkable.

Earlier, their annual same-store sale growth was only 1% on average over the last five years.

But after all strategic changes and improving the shopping experience of the target audience segment, the retailer saw an annual sales growth of 3.5%.

You can read the full case study “here”.


My Question


I know the retailer had an extensive database of existing customers that it could use to identify potential customers and their emotional motivators.

The challenge is, how a new business (with no existing customer base) will identify the emotional motivators of the target audience?

What would be your advice?