The Korea Interview:
Kevin Hogan, interviewed by Sean Yoon, an editor of Unitas BRAND in Korea
2. Could you please tell us what MAP(Mind Access Point) is?
A "MAP" is something I discuss in one of my books. It is a Mind
Access Point. You have all these defense barriers up against anything new.
People are fearful of what they are not familiar with. Mind Access
Points might be literal places in the brain, but I doubt it. They
are metaphorical doors into the mind where you can enter and talk
with someone in their mind.
3. How do you think consumers are addicted to a certain brand?
Namely, why they buy a specific brand continuously?
Consumers become "addicted" to brands the same way they become
addicted to everything else. We are all addicted to many, many
things. Addiction happens when the brain rewards itself by causing
the body to participate in activities that make it feel very, very
good. The brain "wants" these things regularly.
Typically when people think of addiction, drugs, alcohol, cigarettes
all come to mind. But those are simply a few things that are addictive.
Gambling, seeing a glass of water after being in the desert for two
days, sex, all kinds of experiences release this "Dopamine Rush" in
the brain and makes you feel so good you want to do "it" again and
again and again. That is addiction. Addiction is neither good nor bad.
It is a normal human experience.
People buy brands because they are rewarded by using that brand in
potentially many different ways. Maybe someone sees you wear a
stylish pair of jeans and you sense they are thinking, "Wow, he has
style" or, "She is hot." Those senses cause that dopamine rush, the
brain, to be in a feel-good chemical bath, that you and I want to
experience over and over and over again!
My job as a consultant is to help companies and people (that I
personally like and find valuable) find ways to create addictions to
their brands. Once you are addicted to a specific girl or guy, a
brand of cigarettes, anything, every time you see that "thing" or
person there is a chemical "pre-rush" in the brain.
This is why people feel better when they are on their way to go
see the Doctor. They hurt at home, they get to the Doctor's office
and they feel better before they see the Doctor, just knowing that
he will help them feel better. The brain is rewarding you in advance
because it is convinced you will be at the Doctor's office. One of
the things that happens in the chemical bath of the brain is pain
reduction of all kinds.
4. There are lots of brands which arouse 'the sixteen basic
desires of humans' and are very successful. Could you please name
2 or 3 brands that could be good examples for this (brand, arousing
the sixteen basic desires of humans)? And what basic desire they (the
successful brands) are stimulating?
Arguably all good brands, successful brands, arouse at least one
of the 16 Desires. Men can just TOUCH a woman's lingerie (no woman
necessary) and his desire is triggered. He becomes aroused.
Starbucks doesn't succeed solely because its Coffee is good, it
succeeds because there is a scent in the air that pairs with the
feeling of being part of a community or a collective group. When you
go to Starbucks you get that "chemical bath." It is simple addiction,
not to the caffeine but to the feeling of belongingness that is
People feel more secure seeing the little sign that says
their home is protected by a security company. That reduces the
flight or flight drive and causes us to feel more tranquil. That's
another drive. If that sign disappeared one day, you would
experience a great deal of fear and would be compelled to go replace
What's the best way to read a consumer's mind?...
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