KARACHI, March 16 Pakistan has the potential to merge as most prosperous and peaceful nation in South Asia but there is a need to work consistently and vigorously towards improving its perception.

Martin Lindstrom, author of “Brand Sense” and “Buy.ology” is convinced that Pakistan can be re-branded to project a far more positive image. He even promised to dispel falsely negative notions about Pakistan when he goes to receive his award from the Time Magazine.

He was speaking at a workshop organised by the IBA in its drive to make it one of the top ten business schools in the region by the year 2013, says a press release.

The “Buy.ology” workshop provided a detailed insight into the latest developments in consumer behaviour research and its effects on branding and advertising. Martin`s theories merge marketing with neuroscience and delve deep into the consumers` minds using various brain imaging techniques. This is the new frontier of marketing - asking consumer questions is outmoded, now marketers are looking into their brains.

Mr Lindstrom introduced the concept of “smashing your brand”, whereby a brand is so intrinsically embedded into the consumers` minds, that its branding signals are recognised and effective even without the logo.

In fact, according to Lindstrom, the logo will and should become redundant in a couple of years, with other branding signals such as sight, sound, smell, rituals and tone of voice making up a far more effective holistic sensory proposition (HSP).

This goes beyond the concept of USP as according to Martin, human beings are essentially emotional and irrational creatures, so why not utilise all the emotional touch points as much as possible.

Some startling discoveries were also shared with the students, such as, that health warnings on cigarette packs make people smoke more, rather than acting as a deterrent. The concept of “somatic markers” that will enable consumers to remember your brand forever was also discussed.

The workshop discussed theories that could change the way brand managers and advertising agencies will look at branding.

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