5 ploys in psychological marketing to create needs and make consumers buy

marketing creating need


In the realm of marketing, the understanding of human psychology has become a vital tool for businesses seeking to engage and persuade consumers. At the heart of this approach lies the concept of creating need – a strategic manipulation of consumer desires and motivations to generate a sense of necessity for a particular product or service. Psychological marketing, or the art of harnessing human psychology to drive consumer behavior, delves into the intricacies of how individuals form needs and make purchasing decisions.

Marketing can be evil in its methods and its effects on consumers, and bring disasters to society. The argument is that marketers often use psychological ploys and manipulation tactics to make consumers buy things that they don’t need. Marketers create a need. The argument is, ‘creating need’ is the practice of artificially inducing desire or creating a perceived need for a product or service. This is typically done by using psychological ploys and manipulation tactics to make consumers buy things that they don’t need. 

Creating Need

Creating needs through psychological marketing involves a multifaceted approach that encompasses various tactics and strategies. Marketers analyze consumer behavior, motivations, and decision-making processes to identify the triggers that elicit desire and prompt action. By understanding the inner workings of the human mind, they can tailor their messaging, branding, and overall marketing efforts to align with consumers’ psychological needs and aspirations.

A created need is an artificial desire that originates from external sources, such as marketing and advertising campaigns, rather than from the individual’s own innate desires or needs. It is imposed upon individuals through various techniques, such as emotional appeals, social proof, scarcity, and brand loyalty, as well as neuromarketing techniques, which are designed to influence the subconscious mind and create a sense of urgency and desire for a product or service. The idea behind created needs is to convince individuals that they need something that they may not have previously considered or to make them believe that they need more of a product than they actually do. This lead to overconsumption, financial strains, and other negative consequences.

Creating need can be considered simply a form of consumer manipulation, where marketers use psychological ploys to make consumers buy for generating profits, at the expense of consumer well-being.  Creating needs is a great impetus in building the commodification of social relationships.

Here are 5 ploys of psychological marketing to make consumers buy

1. Emotional Appeals in Psychological Marketing

Psychological marketing utilizes emotional appeals as a powerful tool to establish a positive and lasting emotional connection between consumers and products or services. By tapping into consumers’ emotions, marketers aim to create a deep sense of resonance and attachment. For instance, an advertisement for a car may showcase a picturesque scene of a happy family embarking on a memorable road trip, evoking emotions of joy, togetherness, and freedom. This emotional appeal aims to influence consumers by associating the car with the positive experiences portrayed in the advertisement.

By leveraging psychological techniques, marketers can manipulate consumers’ emotions to create an artificial desire for a product, even when the genuine need may be lacking. In the example above, the advertisement seeks to convince consumers that owning a car is necessary to attain the happiness and freedom depicted in the scene. While the emotional appeal may resonate with consumers, it is essential to critically evaluate whether the emotional connection is based on a genuine need or is purely a result of psychological marketing tactics.

Psychology and marketing intersect in the realm of emotional appeals, as marketers draw upon psychological insights and principles to understand human emotions, desires, and motivations. By leveraging this knowledge, marketers can craft persuasive messages and visuals that tap into specific emotions and create a strong bond between consumers and products or brands. However, consumers should remain vigilant and aware of the underlying psychological tactics employed in marketing to make informed decisions and avoid falling prey to manipulative strategies. By understanding the psychology behind emotional appeals in marketing, consumers can navigate the marketing landscape more effectively and make choices that align with their genuine needs and values.

2. Scarcity Tactics: Creating Urgency and False Needs in Psychological Marketing

Scarcity tactics

Scarcity tactics are designed to create a sense of urgency and scarcity around a product or service. The premise is simple: when something is perceived as limited or in high demand, its perceived value increases, and consumers are more motivated to take action. Marketers strategically use scarcity to tap into consumers’ fear of missing out and create a sense of urgency that drives them to make a purchase.

One common approach is to introduce limited-time offers or sales. By setting a specific time frame during which the product or service will be available at a discounted price, marketers create a sense of urgency. Consumers are inclined to act quickly to take advantage of the deal before it expires, fearing that they may lose out on the opportunity.

Similarly, creating a perception of limited stock can also instill a sense of scarcity. When consumers believe that a product is running out or will soon become unavailable, they feel compelled to make a purchase to secure their desired item. This tactic is often used in industries such as fashion, where limited edition items or exclusive collections create a frenzy among consumers.

While scarcity tactics can be effective in motivating consumer behavior, it is essential to consider the ethical implications. In most cases, marketers create a false sense of scarcity to manipulate consumers into making impulsive decisions. The advertisement may create a need by convincing consumers that they must act quickly to secure the product before it runs out, even if the scarcity is artificially imposed.

Creating false needs through scarcity tactics raises questions about the authenticity and transparency of marketing practices. While the technique may drive short-term sales, it can also undermine trust and long-term customer relationships. Consumers who feel deceived or manipulated may develop skepticism toward marketing messages and become less receptive to future campaigns.

3. Fear Advertising: Manipulating Emotions to Create a False Sense of Need in Psychological Marketing

Fear advertising aims to evoke fear, anxiety, or other negative emotions in consumers to create a sense of urgency and convince them of a need for a particular product or service. By triggering emotions associated with potential dangers, marketers attempt to bypass the rational thinking process and appeal directly to consumers’ primal instincts. Psychological marketing acknowledges the powerful influence of emotions on consumer behavior. Fear advertising is one strategy employed to create a false sense of need by evoking fear or anxiety.

Fear advertising example, consider an advertisement for a home security system that depicts a scenario of a break-in or intrusion. The ad may show a family feeling vulnerable and frightened, emphasizing the potential risks they face without adequate protection. By evoking fear, the advertisement attempts to instill a sense of urgency and create a perceived need for the security system. The underlying message is that without the product being promoted, consumers and their loved ones are at risk, and only the advertised solution can provide safety and peace of mind.

Fear advertising raises ethical considerations as it manipulates emotions to influence consumer behavior. Marketers must carefully balance the need to raise awareness of genuine risks with the potential for misleading or exploiting consumers. Transparent communication and providing accurate information about the actual risks and benefits of a product or service are essential to maintain ethical standards.

4. Subliminal Advertising in Psychological Marketing

In the realm of subliminal advertising, marketers aim to influence the subconscious mind of consumers without their explicit awareness. They employ tactics such as briefly displaying brand names, logos, or images in the background of advertisements, often at a speed or size that makes them difficult to consciously perceive. The intention behind these hidden messages is to create an association or trigger specific emotions or desires related to the advertised product or brand.

While subliminal advertising has been a subject of debate and controversy, its effectiveness in creating a sense of need or influencing consumer behavior remains a topic of discussion. Critics argue that subliminal advertising can be manipulative, as it attempts to bypass the rational thinking process and directly influence consumer behavior without their conscious knowledge. This can be seen as creating a false sense of need, as the hidden messages aim to evoke subconscious desires or motivations that may not align with the consumer’s genuine needs or values.

Psychology and marketing intersect in the realm of subliminal advertising, as marketers draw upon psychological principles to understand the workings of the subconscious mind and develop strategies that exploit these mechanisms. By leveraging insights from psychology, marketers seek to establish subtle associations, trigger emotions, or create an unconscious desire for their products or brands.

5. Neuromarketing: Exploiting the Psychology of Marketing to Manipulate Consumer Needs


Neuromarketing seeks to understand how the brain processes information, forms preferences, and makes decisions. By employing techniques such as neuroimaging, eye-tracking, and psychophysiological measurements, marketers gain unprecedented access to the inner workings of the consumer mind. They aim to identify the neural mechanisms that drive emotional responses, memory recall, and impulsive behavior, ultimately seeking to tailor products and messages that resonate deeply with consumers on a subconscious level.

In the context of creating a need, neuromarketing can be seen as manipulative. By capitalizing on consumers’ subconscious emotions, memories, and impulses, marketers attempt to generate an artificial sense of need. This technique bypasses the rational thinking process and influences consumer behavior by tapping into their underlying desires and motivations.

For example, consider a beverage advertisement that uses subtle cues and imagery to evoke feelings of refreshment, happiness, and social acceptance. By targeting the brain’s reward centers and triggering positive emotions associated with the product, marketers create an implicit sense of need and desire within consumers. The advertisement may exploit consumers’ desires for social connection, status, or personal fulfillment, leading them to make impulsive purchasing decisions without fully considering the rational basis for their choice.

Negative consequences of creating the need

The practice of creating needs has negative consequences for both individuals and society as a whole. One such consequence is encouraging excessive consumption. When people are convinced that they need a product, they are more likely to buy it, even if they do not really need it. This can lead to overconsumption and waste, which can be harmful to human health and the environment.

Another consequence is environmental degradation. When people are convinced to buy products that they do not need, it can lead to increased demand for goods and services, which in turn can lead to increased resource extraction, pollution, and other forms of environmental degradation.

Additionally, it can undermine the well-being of the people. When people are convinced to buy products that they do not need, they may end up spending money on things they do not really need and may be led to believe that they need something that is bad for their health or the environment. This can lead to financial strain and dissatisfaction, and can also lead to negative health outcomes.

Overall, the practice of creating needs has negative consequences and it’s important that marketers use these techniques responsibly and with transparency in mind, considering the consumer’s well-being and the impact on society.

Shallow Insan

We strive to break the barrier of the superficial form of thinking to understand and explain complex and interrelated designed events and systems.

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