The role of any marketer is to design a message that catches the attention of your conscious mind. But when a marketer gets hold of your subconscious mind, then they are performing subliminal marketing.
Can you identify this bottle without even reading its brand name or seeing its logo? Why?
Yes, the bottle shape is unique, and we have made a perception that the shape is of a Coca-cola bottle.
Our subconscious mind can quickly relate the image with the brand.
Another surprising fact behind the bottle’s shape is that it looks like the shape of a women’s curvy body. You can’t unsee it once you see it that way.
If you had this image of the bottle in mind, then it means marketers played right with your psychology.
Now let us understand the Subliminal Marketing strategy with some of its classic examples.
What is Subliminal Marketing?
Before getting into the meaning of Subliminal Marketing, let’s first understand what are subliminal messages.
Subliminal is something that is below the threshold of our consciousness. It is a message that slips past below your normal limits of perception. One can’t perceive it from a conscious mind but gets the message in the unconscious mind. Subliminal means a hidden message.
For example, look at this scene of the movie Monsters Inc. When you see carefully, you will find a drawing of a sex act in the closing scene.
You might be seeing it for the first time or might’ve spotted it before. It is a subliminal message. Now you understand how in a fraction of seconds, the movie conveyed a subliminal message.
Subliminal marketing means designing messages that customers don’t detect consciously. The marketers create images and sound that is small but powerful associations between the brand and the indicated meaning.
So, basically, Subliminal Marketing means designing, advertising and promoting by embedding some hidden images in the form of some image, sound, or glimpse to convey a different message.
Subliminal Marketing Examples
Let us look at some astounding examples of Subliminal Marketing.
We know how companies place their products in movies and series for marketing purposes. But placing a product that creates a perception that one cannot even tell if it was marketing or not is what coca-cola did here in this example. In the movie “The Lord of the Rings,” a character holds a ring. There is an inscription on the ring, and among the letters, Coca-Cola is visible. It is the Perfect execution of Subliminal Marketing and product placement.
‘SEX’ is a word that catches the attention of every viewer in a second. Marketers often use the ‘sex sells’ strategy to grab the audience’s attention towards any product. The sci-fi magazine SFX focuses on this Subliminal Marketing to increase the readers’ base. On their cover page, they place the models in a way that hides the half letter ‘F’ in SFX. So, it appears to as SEX. Clever, isn’t it?
Spartan Golf Club
A logo is the face of the brand. If a logo defines the brand, then it succeeds in Subliminal Marketing efforts. Spartan Golf Club logo masters the art of creating two illusions in an image. At one glance, it looks like a Spartan warrior. But, when you see carefully, there’s a silhouette of a golf player. It perfectly describes the brand.
Not all Subliminal Marketing hides the message. Some brands place them in their logo to convey some message to the audience. In the Tostitos logo, the two ‘T’s’ looks like two people sharing a Tostitos. The logo gives a message to consume Tostitos and share it with others.
Many people perceive Amazon’s logo differently. Some say that it’s a smile, and some say it’s just an arrow. But the arrow points from A to Z. The hidden message in this brand logo is that you find everything on Amazon.
This advert of Durex is something that only its target audience can discern. The image presents two hands opening the red curtain with the caption “wishes you a great evening.” The illusion forms like that of a vagina. Condoms advert with no explicit content!
For this example, you got to have a keen eye. Look carefully at the image. The visual was to promote the KFC snacker sandwich in the year 2008. If you see carefully, you will find a dollar bill hidden in the lettuce. It is a subliminal message that augments the price of the sandwich.
Well, do we need to talk about the hidden message of this image? You must’ve understood by just looking at it. In this advertising by magnum, we can see two icecreams. It appears like a women’s bare body at first. This ad created a different perception in your mind and the audience perceives the same.
In this poster of Disney’s “Pirates of the Caribbean,” there is a hidden image and message. The skull and bones give an image of Disney’s logo. The two bones visualize Mickey Mouse’s ears. The Subliminal Marketing here is that the poster gives the message that the movie is a family-friendly movie.
Max Shoes did a great job of creating a Subliminal Marketing strategy. They did simple yet amazing work to advertise shoes. In the picture, we see a shoe in a hand that appears like a face with a mouth wide open. The tagline “you are what you wear” gives it a human touch.
Subliminal Marketing is build around the understanding of human psychology. We are not going in to the debate of whether it works or not.
Hiding subliminal messages in advertising does not always have an effect on sales. Marketers adopt this strategy to affect the actions and behaviours of customers.
With Subliminal Marketing, Coca-Cola has become an unforgettable brand, and SFX increases its readers; hence it had worked for many brands in the past. It’s influence would be more visible if done correctly.
Tell us in the comments which example you found most astounding
Also, share any Subliminal Marketing examples witnessed by you.