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December 21 , 2007

The Brain Sell

When Science Meets Shopping; How the new mind sciences and the persuasion industry are reading our thoughts, influencing our emotions, and stimulating us to shop


In a room sat a theoretical physicist, an engineer, a mathematician, a biochemist, and a neuropsychologist. Their task? To evaluate the effectiveness of a marketing campaign for a grooming product that retails for less than $15.00.

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The Brain Sell, praised as the new Hidden Persuaders, is the inside story of how our rapidly evolving understanding of the brain plays into the advertising, marketing, and retailing industry. With the emergence of Big Data mining, the "persuasion industry" is more prominent than ever. David Lewis, PhD, internationally renowned researcher, brings science to shopping-mapping the brain and the body to explore the sensitivities in our minds and discover how we select and buy. Gone are the days of traditional salesmanship-in the United Kingdom and United States alone, $313 billion is spent annually on subliminal messaging and measuring consumers' subconscious reactions to the color of a child's toy, the smell of a store's interior, or the font of the smallest letter on a soup can. Lewis repeatedly surprises with secrets from the advertising and marketing industries, revealing the scientific strategies used to evaluate and manipulate consumer response. An enlightening read for marketers and advertisers and an urgently important one for anyone who considers themselves a "smart shopper." The Brain Sell shows that even after the product is on the shelf and the commercial is over, the sales pitch goes on.

David Lewis, PhD, a neuropsychologist, is founder and director at the independent research consultancy Mindlab International based at the University of Sussex. Additionally, he is a psychologist, an international lecturer, and acclaimed author, most recently of Impulse (Harvard University Press). Dubbed the "father of neuromarketing" for his pioneering studies of analyzing brain activity for research and commercial purposes, he currently specializes in noninvasive techniques for measuring human responses under real life conditions.

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