Buyology – Book Review

By: Martin Lindstrom

Irrational and Emotional – I’m Human: 

Martin Lindstrom explores the irrational and emotional facets of human behavior, asserting that emotions play a crucial role in our purchasing decisions. Emotional engagement with a brand, such as Coca-Cola’s strategic integration into American Idol, leads to lasting associations, while brands lacking narrative integration become easily forgotten.

Immersive Experience:

Lindstrom delves into mirror neurons, explaining how our brains react as if we perform actions observed, fostering empathy and influencing behavior. Dopamine, a pleasure chemical, coupled with mirror neurons, drives purchasing decisions. Lindstrom highlights the emotional journey of purchasing, from desire to fulfillment, emphasizing the power of emotional associations.

It’s a Kind of Magic:

Lindstrom explores the relationship between unpredictability, anxiety, and superstitious behavior, linking it to brand loyalty and rituals. Brands with associated rituals are deemed “stickier,” providing comfort amid life’s uncertainties. In times of stress, consumers seek familiar products, reinforcing the connection between brand obsession, rituals, and the need for control.

Why Did I Choose You?:

Lindstrom introduces the concept of somatic markers, subconscious shortcuts built on past experiences that influence decision-making. Advertisers can strategically create these markers through unexpected, memorable experiences, influencing consumer choices. Lindstrom explores the impact of humor and fear in forming powerful somatic markers.

Selling to Our Senses:

Lindstrom emphasizes the effectiveness of multi-sensory experiences in marketing, asserting that visual images paired with touch, sound, or smell are more memorable. Smell, the most primal sense, touch, and sound are explored as sensory sales techniques. Lindstrom envisions a future retail world rich in sensory stimuli, suggesting that engaging multiple senses will be increasingly effective in winning consumer loyalty and driving purchasing decisions.


Lindstrom’s exploration of the subconscious aspects of consumer behavior, from emotional engagement and immersive experiences to the role of rituals and sensory marketing, provides valuable insights for marketers. Understanding the intricacies of human decision-making, somatic markers, and sensory influences can guide effective strategies in an ever-evolving retail landscape.

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