Recent information shows when our brain first receives information, it either filters it out or sends it over to the decision-making, problem-solving, learning department of our brain; this physiological part of our brain operates this way because it is following a set of internal rules. These rules serve to only allow that which is really necessary or novel to pass through. If we were to digest every single piece of incoming visual data and information that comes at us at all times, we could never handle it. Therefore, those in marketing, sales, and education who have a message to get across to their clients or participants can benefit from understanding the physiological side of the brain. Furthermore, reinforcing brand identity or engaging employees is an ongoing goal for companies and involves connecting one’s message with others. These following characteristics must be present for the data-receiving section of the brain to pass it along to the learning, problem-solving, decision-making part of the mind.
Information presented must be novel
This part of your brain is functioning to help you survive and cannot be bogged down by extraneous or familiar information. If it has been seen before, then it is not considered very essential. Oren Klaff gives this example in a video he produced on the subject: when we drive to work, we do not pay any (or much ) attention to the surroundings or the route. We have driven that way many times before, it’s familiar, nothing new. We do not actively concentrate on each street passed or every sign. We can be thinking about many other things and still make all the right turns. However, if there were to be a detour one day on the way to work, we would suddenly find ourselves “seeing” the environment around us in detail. Buildings, streets, signs, and so on would stand out to us because of it being unfamiliar; we would need to pay attention in order to find our way to work. The brain has just gone into alert mode and made us highly aware because of the novel setting in what is usually familiar. The same can be applied to those developing or reinforcing brand image – being unique in a familiar setting will gain attention. From the logo to the office furniture, custom-designed options bring out the distinctly unique.
Looks for the concrete
The brain needs the tangible, physical evidence of what is being sold, talked about, delivered, or presented. In other words, don’t just tell me your brand is friendly, yet artistic and on the modern cutting edge, SHOW me. When I come to your office, let me see and feel the concrete proof of this, through your decorations, your stylish lobby with updated couches and open floor plan. The way in which you design your workplace reflects the psychology of your brand.
It is drawn to high-contrast visuals (or content)
Contrasts give the brain a distinction — a comparison — a focus. If everything is sort of the same, then things can get overlooked. Create contrasts in any number of ways. From jazzy color-contrast combos to sleek asymmetrical lines created with office furniture, developing high-contrast visuals is artfully pleasing to the eye. The brain will zoom in on the differences, calculating and comparing. Keep in mind, you want to create pleasant contrasts, not ones that are discordant.
Seeks clarity and rejects the complex
Once information makes its way to the problem-solving area of the mind, then more analytic thinking can occur, but initially, the brain sorts through to information that is simple, clear, and to the point. The same can be said when the brain takes in visual marketing or brand image data. Too many confusing, conflicting details generally get pushed out in favor of an uncomplicated focal point. The brain will tune out marketing material that is too busy with information. Furthermore, cluttered disorganized work spaces tend to give the brand a cluttered “feel.” Make the work environment functionally neat and tastefully decorated.
The brain has to work effectively by knowing what is important to send over to the learning and problem-solving department of our brain and what needs to be pitched. Understanding this is pretty important for businesses, marketers, retailers, educators, and those wanting to establish their brand because they want their message to get through. By using the knowledge of the workings of the brain, companies are better able to effectively connect with their audience and enhance their brand. At Tangram, we weave together brand message and technology in office environments. If you would like to discuss this topic further, please contact us today!