Using Sensory Research, Social Media, and Search To Explore Cultural Shifts

September 8, 2021 Author: Mario X. Carrasco

Cultural conversations thrive at the intersection of social media and search. Some consumers use social media to engage in external dialogue in the “public square” of society. While others look to validate their points of view without public scrutiny by typing inquiries into search. Collectively, these shared experiences provide a window into factors driving cultural shifts that impact consumer behavior and, ultimately, purchase decisions.

When consumers share their experiences online or inquire online through search, marketers often make assumptions based on that online behavior but neglect the sensory component. The how, what, and why of our actions are shaped by culture. The more we experiment with new things and elaborate on those experiences, the more culture becomes malleable, bending towards new dimensions.

Understanding this intersectionality is critical to any multicultural marketing strategy. Marketers, however, tend to over-rely on common cultural elements like values and language and underinvest in subtle elements that evoke nostalgia, like colors, music, even smells. Brands that dial into these cultural nuances consider how people feel and build those elements into the brand experience to create meaningful connections.

By making insights immersive and inspirational, marketers build cultural intelligence attuned to the dynamics driving culture.

In this episode of The New Mainstream podcast, Kalil Vicioso, founder of Tiny Hat Consulting, explores the intersectionality of sensory research, social media, and search and how they help marketers build cultural intelligence.