Study Finds Logo Exposure Changes How Shoppers Think

Think Different Apple Logo Image source:

Yesterday I showed you a nifty infographic about the crazy world of psychological marketing, but I breezed past most of the scientific studies because they were far too big to cover in a single post. So today we're going to take a closer look at the first study in order to gain a better understanding of how custom clothing will allow you to use human psychology to promote your business.  

Apple has been promoting the slogan "Think Different" for years. That's easily one of the best examples of successful marketing strategies that I can think of. Apple promotes that concept in everything they do -- in their commercials, in their products, in their company culture, and even among their consumers. Apple marketers strove to differentiate the company from archrival Microsoft. They portrayed Microsoft as old-fashioned and stodgy, while portraying Apple as hip and youthful. Everything about the company's image screams, "We think different!"   Mac vs PC Image source:

This corporate branding is so successful, in fact, that it can literally change the way that consumers think. A recent study by Professors Gavan Fitzsimons, Tanya Chartrand, and Grainne Fitzsimons found that brief exposure to a company's logo can cause consumers to exhibit personality traits that mirror that brand's company image.   Gavan Fitzsimons explained, "Each of us is exposed to thousands of brand images every day, most of which are not related to paid advertising. We assume that incidental brand exposures do not affect us, but our work demonstrates that even fleeting glimpses of logos can affect us quite dramatically."  

The researchers asked participants to think of as many uses as possible for a brick besides building a wall. The participants were exposed to the IBM logo or the Apple logo before the exercise. What researchers found was that participants who saw the Apple logo came up with more answers. It makes sense -- Apple calls itself unconventional and innovative while IBM opts for a corporate image of responsibility and reliability.   The researchers did a similar test with Disney and E! logos. They found that participants who were exposed to the Disney logo behaved more honestly during the experiment.  

Disney and E! Logos

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What does this mean for your business? Creating a corporate image and then reinforcing that image with company logo exposure is absolutely critical. Based on these findings, you could literally change the way that consumers think and act by exposing them to your logo. Likewise, the absence of a logo or weak corporate image could promote negative shopping behavior.

That goes to show that you can't skimp on logo design and proper corporate branding strategies.  

Suppose that you own a company that sells sporting equipment and you promote a corporate image of being wild, free, and impulsive. Exposing shoppers to your logo (by putting the logo on your company uniforms, for example) could encourage consumers to act more impulsively and make spur-of-the-moment purchases. Maybe that's why Red Bull fans are always willing to buy a few more drinks.  

Keep in mind that this research has two components: establishing a corporate image and then exposing shoppers to the logo. We'll leave image building up to you, but once you've got a strong identity a set of professional custom uniforms can take your business to the next level!

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