Our brain is our biggest consumer of energy. As we have evolved, we’ve figured out ways to conserve its effort. We develop cognitive schemas to figure out how the world works. Schemas are recognizable patterns that allow us to automatically adapt our behavior.
For example, every day you get into the car and you know instinctively to drive on the right side of the road. Fast forward and you’re on a trip to the UK or Australia. The first time you drive on the left side, it throws you for a loop. It’s disruptive to your normal driving schema so it forces the brain to think and thereby, it elicits word of mouth.
Years ago Procter & Gamble launched a new Secret deodorant. It utilized a moisture activated ingredient that kicks in when you sweat. P&G understood that this could be positioned against the traditional schema of the more you work out, the more you sweat, and the worse you smell. The counter-intuitive tagline for the brand became,
The More You Move, the Better You Smell
Did it get people talking? A staggering 51,000 consumers posted comments on P&G’s website about the product.
Takeaway: Most organizations fail to deliver an exceptional employee experience. Sweat the little things. Do the unexpected and disrupt schemas. Become talk-able.