Skip to content

26: Marketers can’t afford to treat consumers like computers

Tom Asacker

Tom Asacker is a keynote speaker and an adviser to executives and companies, and he is the author of five books, including “The Business of Belief.”

He believes many marketers operate under the false assumption that people behave like computers, expecting them to make decisions based simply on the information they supply and then choose their product or service.

According to him, it just doesn’t work that way: “When you dig deep enough into it, you find out that human beings are driven by their perceptions and their desires. You add that up and you’ve got beliefs. Their feelings, their perceptions, their desires are what end up giving them this feeling of knowing,” says Asacker. “Then they look for information to validate that.” He goes on to say, “If you don’t understand that … you have absolutely no chance in the marketplace.”

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today” podcast include:

  • How’s the water? — Understanding how decisions are made and why consumers do what they do. (1:35)
  • Breaking the chains of habit: What is the “something else” that drives people’s decision making? (5:15)
  • The lightbulb of confusion: Marketers don’t understand it’s unexpected events that trigger consumer learning. (7:20)
  • Can you get 29 million TED Talk views and still be wrong? (12:30)
  • Believe your feelings: Doing what your inner voice tells you to do. (17:00)
  • New business models: Identifying sustainable value. (18:25)