Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Branded Mind: What Neuroscience Really Tells Us About The Puzzle Of The Brain And The Brand By Erik Du Plessis

The Branded Mind: What Neuroscience Really Tells Us about the Puzzle of the Brain and the Brand

The Branded Mind: What Neuroscience Really Tells Us About The Puzzle Of The Brain And The Brand By Erik Du Plessis

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Product Description

The Branded Mind is about how people think, and in particular how people think about brands. Brand choice decisions ultimately take place inside the consumer's head. Neuroscience, then, holds lessons for how consumers respond to brands and make purchasing decisions. Marketers and brand managers should take note.

Erik du Plessis does just that. In this, his second book, du Plessis explores what scientists have uncovered about the structure of the brain and how different parts of the brain interact. He investigates developments in neuroscience and neuromarketing and what lessons this holds for brand managers. What bearing do these developments have on current theories of consumer behavior? How can neuroscience contribute to marketing and brand-building strategies?

Including research by Millward Brown, The Branded Mind touches on key topics such as the nature of feelings, moods, personality, measuring the brain, consumer behavior, decision making, and market segmentation.
Product Details
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #567128 in Books
  • Published on: 2011-03-28
  • Original language: English
  • Number of items: 1
  • Dimensions: .89" h x 6.14" w x 9.53" l, 1.33 pounds
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • 272 pages


  • ISBN13: 9780749461256
  • Condition: New
  • Notes: BRAND NEW FROM PUBLISHER! 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
  • Tracking provided on most orders. Buy with Confidence! Millions of books sold!
Editorial Reviews


"Du Plessis...provides an illuminating glimpse into the "black box" of consumer behavior...the author presents research findings to suggest that neuroscience has enough practical substance to warrant exploration of how it might help marketers design strategies that result in more individually tuned consumer value and satisfaction... Summing Up: Recommended." -Choice Magazine

"The Branded Mind...provides a fine survey of how neuroscience research affects market research techniques, and how it can learn from established business routines… explores recent studies and findings in both neuroscience and business, making this a pick for both types of college-level collections." Midwest Book Review

"…[The Branded Mind] will generously reward those who read it with great care… With both rigor and eloquence, [Erik Du Plessis] explains why emotions are not in conflict with rational behavior; indeed, they cause rational behavior.  For those who are eager to understand the consumer brain and the decision-making process it tends to follow, this insight is of incalculable value… It is a brilliant achievement." –Robert Morris 

Recommended by CEO Refresher!

"... provides an in depth and contemporary analysis of how people think, and how that relates to branding...those in search of a rich and comprehensive understand of neuromarketing should look no further. " - brandchannel.com

See an excerpt on the American Educational Foundation website!

"...[A] fascinating ride into one of the last uncharted areas of the body... This book will be an incredibly useful and beneficial addition to the knowledge of the brain and how traders can exploit its functions." -  - Will Roney, Startup Business Book Reviews

About the Author

Erik du Plessis is President of the Johannesburg-based research agency, Impact Information. Impact is now part of the Millward Brown Group, one of the world's top 10 market research companies (owned by WPP) with 65 offices in 39 countries. He is also the author of The Advertised Mind.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful.
5A travel guide and operations manual for exploration and management of the "Damasian paradigm shift"
By Robert Morris
With assistance contributed by Nigel Hollis and Graham Page, Erik du Plessis provides his reader with an update on recent developments in the field of neuromarketing to explain "how people think and how people think about brands." He invokes an especially appropriate extended metaphor when noting in the Introduction that, like a jigsaw puzzle, "the brain consists of many pieces, each unique in appearance and function. All these work independently, and in harmony, to produce the big picture. The big picture is termed `behaviour.' If only one piece of the brain is faulty then the big picture is also faulty.

"To complete a jigsaw puzzle you need to know the picture on the cover of the box, and you need to study the individual pieces when trying to assemble the puzzle. If you do not know what the final picture looks like and merely proceed by trying to assemble the pieces you will waste your time. Similarly, just looking at the picture on the cover tells you very little about the way the puzzle is assembled. Something similar is true of the brain." This brief excerpt suggests what this book is about and by what process de Plessis' intends to explain what neuroscience really tells us about the puzzle of the consumer brain and the brand.

This is by no means an "easy read"; on the contrary. However, it will generously reward those who read it with great care. In fact, I strongly recommend this sequence:

1. Read the Foreword, the Table of Contents, the Introduction (Chapter 1), and then the "Summary of implications for neuromarketing" on Page 244.

2. Re-read them at least once more and highlight key passages.
3. Then read Chapters 2-4 and highlight key passages.
4. Re-read highlighted key passages thus far, then Chapters 5-18 and again highlight key passages.
5. Then do the same for Chapters 19-23, Chapters 24-28, and Chapters 29-30

To repeat: du Plessis will generously reward those who read (and even more generously reward those who re-read) this book with great care. With both rigor and eloquence, he explains why emotions are not in conflict with rational behavior; indeed, they cause rational behavior. For those who are eager to understand the consumer brain and the decision-making process it tends to follow, this insight is of incalculable value. Better yet, du Plessis creates for it a neurological context, a frame-of-reference, within which to understand both its nature and implications.

Of special interest to me is what du Plessis has to say about Antonio Damasio's somatic marker theorem. What does it achieve? "It forces attention on the negative outcome to which a given action may lead, and functions as an automated alarm signal which says: Beware of danger ahead if you choose the option which leads to this outcome...Somatic markers probably increase the accuracy and efficiency of the decision process. Their absence reduces them."

Here in Dallas near the downtown area, there is a farmer's market at which merchants offer slices of fresh fruit as samples. In the same spirit, I provide excerpts in my reviews. No brief commentary of mine, however, can possibly do full justice to the scope and depth of valuable substance that du Plessis provides in The Branded Mind. It is a brilliant achievement. For those who read it and then re-read it with appropriate care, its value will be incalculable.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
5A deep dive into the neuroscience of brands and branding
By Roger Dooley
Erik du Plessis has created a serious piece of branding literature in The Branded Mind. It's not a breezy read, and doesn't offer tips like "5 ways to make your brand memorable." What The Branded Mind offers instead is a well-researched and thoughtful analysis that begins with relevant brain science and ends with practical advice on topics such as calculating an advertising budget. The book is chock-full of charts and graphs to support the author's points, and offers plenty of research citations to back up the data and to provide the interested reader with a way to dig even deeper into interesting topics.

Du Plessis goes out of his way to avoid, and in some cases refute, simplistic notions of buy buttons, emotional factors replacing rational decisions, and even the unconscious/conscious divide touted by so many neuromarketing vendors.

The Branded Mind isn't a book to zip through, grab a few takeaways, and dispose of. Rather, some sections will merit serious study, and you'll want to keep it at hand as a reference when evaluating advice proffered by branding gurus and other "experts."



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