On the ship last week there was a resident photographer. She clearly took her job seriously because it felt like every time you turned around, she was there wanting to point her camera at you

To buy these photos costs £20 or thereabouts per picture – so you can imagine that cost would soon mount up over a week.

You can also imagine that for a lot of passengers, they wouldn’t be purchasing every photo that was taken of them during the week

Now this is where P&O’s Marketing Department got a bit clever.

Skimming through the channels on the in-cabin tv, I found a promo video for all the facilities around the ship where you could spend money… and dominating this video was marketing for “Your Cruise Story Book”

The psychology behind this is that you’re not just on a holiday, you’re having an “experience”… this trip will have a lasting impact – it’s your legacy. So because it’s your legacy, you’re not creating this story for yourself – but for future generations… therefore you have a duty to tell the story properly.

Are your customers emotionally connected to your products? | Veronica Pullen

They had tuned into their customers emotional connection frequency.

With me so far?

The Cruise Story Book cost £20 and has pages pre-printed inside for every stage of the cruise; the day and place you embarked, what you did on the first evening, day 2 in port – etc etc

And you’ve guessed it – plenty of space to add the oh so important photos of you walking down the gangplank at each port, sitting together at each meal, enjoying the activities and so on.

So what started off as being “buy this photo album” and “buy a few photos to put in it” was given an emotional hook by the cruise line. The ever so subtle way that it was implied that you were denying yourself quality memories if you failed to “tell your cruise story” made sure there was a never ending stream of buyers

We saw enough people carrying these books around to feel confident that a good proportion of passengers did buy into the concept too.

Step 2 of the Social Marketing Profits Blueprint™ is connect. Your audience will buy from the person or business that they feel an emotional connection with – the decision whether to purchase (or not) is an emotional one, and your ability to build those connections is what will drive your success.

However, what I realised last week, is the you can take it one step further, and tune your individual products and services into your customers’ emotional connection with your business through your marketing too… by giving it a story of its own… just like P&O did last week (and quite likely all the other cruise lines too)

Having filled places on the cruise by building emotional connections with customers who choose P&O over other lines because of a connection they feel to the line, boat or itiniary… they then set about getting passengers to part with more money by creating an emotional connection to the story of the trip

Think about the products and services that you offer. Which of them could you create an emotional connection to and encourage additional purchases or upsells from existing clients?

What’s your product’s story?