Remember when Coke was losing the “Cola Wars” to Pepsi in the early 1980s? The Pepsi Challenge was kicking the classic cola’s butt, so Coke decided to introduce New Coke, a beverage with a sweeter formula like Pepsi’s that was set to replace the old formula. But when consumers found out that their classic Coke would be taken off the market because of it, the demand for the old perennial went through the roof. Classic Coke became bigger than ever and essentially eradicated the “Cola Wars” forever. Pepsi was never number one again. What happened exactly?

Marketers discovered that people’s fear of loss carries a ton of emotion with it. In fact, we hate to lose more than we love to win, and we will fight tooth and nail to hang onto something we’re familiar or comfortable with. Even if it’s a soda. Thus, the fear of losing Classic Coke drove consumers to the brand better than just about any positive message could’ve hoped to.

Marketing psychology expert Jake McKenzie is here to explain how the fear of loss and scarcity are used to drive consumers to the shelves for all kinds of products. It’s one of the oldest tricks in the book, but our new understanding of consumer psychology makes it a fascinating topic for today’s podcast.

Welcome to the Ad Couch with Jake McKenzie, CEO of the Intermark Group ad agency.

About the Show:
Take a journey through the world of creative psychology and group imagination. Each Ad Couch episode puts a different concept, brand or expert “on the couch” to analyze how:

  • Different brands and agencies are effectively leveraging creative psychology to move consumer behavior
  • Principles of psychology can be used by marketers and advertisers to build movements and produce change
  • Influencers are changing the course of advertising through applied psychology
  • Pop culture impacts markets and the power of ideas

About the Host:

The Ad Couch is led by Jake McKenzie, whose targeted expertise is helping brands incorporate creative psychology into their marketing and advertising strategies in order to influence consumer behavior.

A graduate of Vanderbilt University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Political Science, McKenzie is now the CEO of Intermark Group, one of the Southeast’s leading advertising agencies. Under his leadership, the agency has built a strategy team known as the “Insight Team” that includes a Ph.D. in psychology to facilitate applied psychology advertising methods and enhance brands’ success.

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