We love the unexpected. The human brain is excited by anything new or changing. A study published in the Journal of Neuroscience has shown that the pleasure centre of our brain – the nucleus accumbens – reacts more strongly to unexpected pleasures than predictable ones. Researchers found that our nucleus accumbens is much more active when we are presented with unpredictable yet rewarding stimuli. We love surprises.
In today’s world, consumers are constantly inundated by repetitive approaches to marketing. Competition is fierce and brands are competing for consumer attention every day in a cluttered marketplace. Some figures even suggest that the average consumer may be exposed to as much as 30,000 marketing messages a day. Is it any wonder that deep down all we genuinely crave is the new and unexpected?
Despite the fast-changing pace of our lives, brands are still very important to us; perhaps even more so now as they play an increasingly larger role. How can brands build the value of discovery into their design and communication strategy, and why is it so important? Good companies create products and services. Great companies create experiences.
The human brain tires of the predictable very easily. Brands have to invest in creative development to continually deliver unexpected delight and will greatly benefit from embedding ingenuity and creativity into their vision.
We would not be surprised to find popular ingredients such as olive oil or white truffles listed on a restaurant menu. However, how many of us would expect to find them blended into our drinks?
Discerning drinkers are being invited to rediscover the art of cocktails at Cartizze, a newly launched luxury bellini and cocktail destination in the heart of Mayfair.
Named after the 1,000 feet high Prosecco vineyards, Cartizze transports guests into a timeless world of appetising discovery. Harnessing ingredients such as olive oil and truffles, the cocktail menu offers unusual creations, including the signature Olive Oil Gin Fizz or Truffled Liquorice Sour. Cocktail loyalists can even rent a private locker for their favourite bottle, allowing discerning guests to enjoy their drink on the premises after hours.
With undeniable devotion, Cartizze invites you to immerse yourself in the art of experimental cocktail blends and to discover the unexpected. For the usually more traditional realm of Mayfair, it has created a buzz through its surprising concoctions that deliver as much delight as they do flavour.
Transform the familiar
Pioneering change is not limited only to dramatic discoveries and innovation. Unexpected delight can be accomplished through the simplest transformation of the familiar.
Nestled in one of London’s most distinguished districts, Mayfair Pizza Co is known for serving luxurious authentic pizzas to a discerning clientele. From the popular gourmet lobster pizza to the signature truffle and porcini mushrooms, the restaurant is known for its selection of quality ingredients.
So imagine the surprise of Mayfair pizza lovers when presented with the opportunity to order an Apple and Raspberry Crumble Pizza? Yes, you read that right. Mayfair Pizza Co introduced a new Sweet Pizza menu including a wild strawberry and basil pizza or a Nutella calzone. At first glance these pizzas look like the familiar thin crust creations you would expect. However, on closer inspection diners soon discover a culinary experiment that has become as popular as the restaurant’s more traditional counterparts.
This bold move to reinvent the familiar created a talking point for the brand and prompted a social media debate: sweet pizzas – inherently wrong or surprisingly right?
Sweet pizzas have become one of the top 10 sellers for Mayfair Pizza Co and their popularity continues to generate attention and commercial results for the brand.
Shape the future
The journey of discovery invariably links to a vision of the future and its undeniable sense of the unknown. If brands are seeking to create new and unexpected experiences, how can they harness the promise of what the future may hold? Brands should be investing in shaping the future of their industry and becoming pioneers.
Aspria is a collection of Europe’s finest members clubs, pioneering a unique vision for integrated sports, health and lifestyle under one roof. The group, which has eight clubs, has been transforming iconic sites into innovative centres of wellbeing excellence.
Underpinned by a unique ‘AspriaPro’ health assessment system, the clubs feature carefully selected state-of-the-art equipment combining the latest innovations in sports and wellbeing, thus providing an unrivalled experience for their members.
But what does the future of wellbeing look like? A recent campaign focuses on the innovation and technology being invested into the clubs, affording an inimitable experience in health and wellbeing that will be the first of its kind.
Specific details of the project are being closely guarded until the highly anticipated launch later this month. The cultivation of such mystery further reinforces the sense of impending discovery.
Brands that champion the new and unexpected will engage with their audience emotionally and establish a position of authority and trust. Why? Because they do not predict the future – they create it.
Therefore, when it comes to the future success of your brand, how important is it to harness the value of discovery? Great brands build great businesses and they do so by capturing imaginations and taking us on a journey. Challenging expectations and transforming routines might seem difficult – impossible even. But the only impossible journey is the one your brand never begins.
Our brains love to be pleasantly surprised. We delight in the unexpected. The sense of discovery creates an emotional trigger and is a powerful influence on behaviour. That emotional engagement can attract the attention of those yet to engage with your brand or erode the resistance to adopt and convert. Discovery can transform a brand observer to a brand lover.
What can be more powerful than endless possibilities and the thrill of the unknown? Discovery lies not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes. Brands must challenge expectations, transform the familiar and shape the future as pioneers. Will brands reap the benefits? Absolutely — when they least expect it.