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Look inside your kitchen cabinet and odds are you have a collection of old friends gazing back at you — the Rice Bubbles cartoon characters, the Frosted Flakes tiger, the Honey Puffs bee, the Milo boy, the Sultana Bran sunshine face, you get the idea. The real reason they are there has more do with your subconscious craving for eye contact than the taste of the products.
A recent study published in the journal Environment and Behavior, researchers at Cornell University manipulated the gaze of the cartoon rabbit on Trix cereal boxes and found that adult subjects were more likely to choose Trix over competing brands if the rabbit was looking at them rather than away. The researchers also found that the eyes of characters on boxes of cereal marketed to kids were directed downward, to meet the upward gaze of children in grocery store aisles. (Yes check it out next time you walk through a supermarket - subliminal trickery).
“Making eye contact even with a character on a cereal box inspires powerful feelings of connection,” said one of the study's authors Professor Brian Wansink.
In other studies, researchers have also found that children and adults who avoid or are denied eye contact are more likely to suffer from depression and feelings of isolation as well as exhibit antisocial traits such as callousness. Rather than cause and effect, the hypothesis is that the relationship between less eye contact and psychological problems is circular and reinforcing. This is alarming in a society where people increasingly spend more time looking at their mobile devices than at one another.
In short eye contact makes us more socially aware and empathetic. It allows us to make sense of our relationships and social orientation. Moreover, research from as far back as the 1980s indicates that people who make eye contact are perceived as more likable and trustworthy.
Still not convinced about how much your peepers mean to you sales, marketing and business relationships? Then check out this episode of UQTV where I will share two more reasons why eye contact adds impact.
But wait - researchers at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine last year also found that patients of doctors who made more eye contact had better health, adhered more to medical advice and were more likely to seek treatment for future problems. Not surprisingly, doctors who brought laptops into the examining room made less eye contact.
“Eye contact is a really good surrogate for where attention is and the level of accord building in a relationship,” said Enid Montague, a professor of engineering and medicine at Northwestern, who used video recordings of 100 patient visits to a primary care clinic for her analysis. “We found eye contact leads to significantly better patient outcomes.”
So eye contact with your doc can make you healthier too!
Tweet this: Eye contact increases your EQ
When it comes to positive workplace cultures and exemplary customer service, few it seems could rival the happiness seen in Las Vegas based company Zappos. It all started in 1999 when their founder Nick Swinmurn found himself walking around a mall in San Francisco looking for a pair of shoes to no avail and then searching online only to turn up nothing. So Nick decided to quit his day job and start an online shoe retailer... and Zappos.com was born!
At Zappos they believe that the speed at which a customer receives an online purchase plays a very important role in how that customer thinks about shopping online again in the future, so at Zappos.com, they have put a lot of focus on making sure the items get delivered to customers as quickly as possible. In order to do that, they warehouse everything they sell, and unlike most other online retailers, they don't make an item available for sale unless it is physically present in their warehouse.
In 2001 Zappos brought in $8.6 million.
In 2003 they reached $70 million in gross sales.
In 2004, they achieved $184 million in gross sales.
In 2008, they hit $1 billion in annual sales, two years earlier than expected.
In 2009, just a decade after their launch the company announced its plans to join the Amazon.com, Inc. family with a buy out worth around $940 million in stock and cash.
In this episode of UQTV we take a look under the hood at Zappos "work hard, play hard" culture to find out how their rituals have delivered happiness and profits.
Tweet this: @Zappos say that customer service isn’t just a department @UQPower
Now it's your turn.
1. Have you WOWed at least one person today?
2. What can you do to make it more fun in your workplace?
3. How do you get your workers and co-workers to grow?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.
It doesn’t matter what you make, write, craft, code, film, engineer, perform, produce, paint, invent, teach or build…at some point in your career or business lifecycle, you’ve probably experienced this.
You make something truly, utterly brilliant. You feel a buzz of excitement about it and you put it out there for the world to consume. And as you wait for the phone to ring, cash register to cha-ching or offers to bring wealth through your door, you realise you are hearing...
Yep that's right, the world has responded with absolute silence. Zip, nada, rien (it's French look it up).
It's deadly and it hurts. Which leaves you to wonder, is this thing called marketing all it's cracked up to be?
If you’ve ever died inside from the deafening silence and you're wondering if it's time to kiss your marketing goodbye, you’ll appreciate today’s episode of UQTV.
Now I’d love to hear from you.
Have you ever felt like your work and offerings were falling short of their potential? Where do your tribe hang out and are you providing them with a communal space where they can come together?
Share your experience and thoughts in the comments below with as much detail as possible.
Thanks in advance for being kind and generous in your replies and discussion. Your responses, shares and stories are what makes this one of the best, most unique tribes for the improvement of businesses, their people and their culture.
Diggin' this content? Then sign up here, it's free and you'll get a copy of my video to help you improve your EQ called "Soft Skills Gone Hard"
There's a lot we can learn from large companies successes and failures in any industry, and today's featured Aussie brand is no exception.
As an avid student of branding I can simply turn on the radio, walk down the street or open an email and I have a thousand ideas about how I could adapt the concept in my own or a clients business. From the way an image is presented to he language used or a clever turn of phrase I find myself dissecting and appreciating the world around me all the time. Can you relate?
Often some of the older, traditional, more established brands can start to seem stale and unexciting as they tend to spend years building upon their core message and values delivering consistency to the market. However today’s brand have been a little cheeky and have been trying a little experiment in a real life "LAB" of their own to see if they can change their brand image and position themselves differently in the market.
Credit - some of the footage shown in this video is from A Current Affair's story shown on 20/2/14.
Tweet This: In branding perception is everything. @UQPower
Now, I’d love to hear from you.
What ideas does this trigger for how you could experiment and strengthen your brand?
Have you seen another brand that is shaking up their strategy?
Share your thoughts in the comments below, I'd love to read them!
Diggin' this content - sign up here, it's free!
What's needed more than ever in today’s crowded marketplace is authenticity and uniqueness. And when it comes to a USP, few companies would be brave enough to declare that their products are “more powerful than a bottle of sodium hypochlorite. Gentler than a thousand puppy licks and able to detox tall homes in a single afternoon.”
However one company is proud to make the claim and the bold, cheekiness of it makes them stand out in the market. That business is known as Method.
Brain child of two former roomies – Adam and Eric, Method provides cleaning supplies that are beautiful to look at and kind to your nose, the environment and your family. Take a look for yourself in the video below.
Tweet This: Be first, be unique or go home." @UQPower
These three strategies are just the tip of the cleanliness iceberg for what Method is doing right to build their brand and culture’s UQ Power and I am sure they will continue to wow us with their awesome fun videos and clean hand, thigh slapping, getting down on dirty campaigns.
So what's your dirty little secret for making your brand and culture unique?
In the comments below share with the UQTV community what’s the one thing your brand stands for and which of the three strategies would help you amplify it even more.
As always be sure to read, share and interact with others as the best learning comes from our collective brain power!
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PS: Find out more about fabulous Method here http://www.methodhome.com