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Book Reviews

About Face

The Secrets of Emotionally Effective Advertising

Reviewed by

While nearly every company and self-employed individual has something to promote, authorities on marketing rarely agree on the methods used to sell anything. Consequently, how-to manuals on this popular subject can be found everywhere from the public library to local bookstore to college campus.

The supply of marketing books is not an issue, but distinguishing the best from the worst can be a problem. About Face: The Secrets of Emotionally Effective Advertising may be classified among the finest. This text explores the process of marketing from a commonsense perspective, while recognizing that emotions really do guide decisions, even when we believe a so-called rational, analytical stance is appropriate. His fascinating approach incorporates the creative, the intuitive, and the emotional into the coldhearted realm of levelheaded business. In addition, Hill is not afraid to contradict what other recognized instructors have proposed in their wide-ranging theories on how to reach a distant consumer.

Organized and enjoyable to read, his work discusses topics such as keeping advertising simple and close to home, making the approach memorable and relevant, and selling hope rather than leading with price. Hill advises mirroring the target market’s values and emphasizes the importance of believability. His tactics can be applied to all professions, giving those in-the-know a favorable edge. Backed by broad research, Hill has provided extensive notes along with an index, making About Face suitable for classroom use. Filled with photos, graphs, diagrams, and charts, he illustrates his key points to aid in quick comprehension.

Dan Hill is the founder and president of Sensory Logic, a research consultancy that helps clients enhance their “sensory-emotional connection” with customers. A regular speaker at business conventions throughout the world, he’s an expert on facial coding as well as the role of emotions in consumer and employee behavior. Hill is also the author of Emotionomics, a bestselling title published by Kogan Page.

Whether marketing a product, service, or entertainer, the hardest part may be in determining what specific sensor will trigger the intended response and result in a sale. About Face addresses probable mistakes and guides the reader away from stereotypical pitfalls placed in the way by the advertising industry itself. Hill has supplemented the works of his more “logical” competition in acknowledging the importance of basic human instincts and motivations, many of which are innate—biological urges and physical desires—rather than reactions learned from experience.

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have his/her book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Review make no guarantee that the author will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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