The moment comes, your first opportunity to show your smarts around behaviour change, but like a deer in the headlights, heart pumping, dry mouth, you scramble to remember that article you read about optimism bias…just like that your moment has passed.

Vowing never to let anyone suffer the same fate, I’ve put together a series of consumer hacks aimed at giving you a quick boost of 10 iQ points in any client meeting.

Consumer Hack No. 1: Misattribution of Arousal – We are often mistaken about how our preferences are formed.


Experiment – Two separate groups of men walked across two different bridges, both with a female experimenter at the end. One bridge was safe, the other was unstable. After the participants walked across either bridge, the experimenter asked them to fill out a short survey and gave them her phone number to call if they had any further questions. The researchers hypothesised that the group who walked across the scary bridge were more likely to call the woman.

Result – The men who walked across the scary bridge did indeed call the woman more than the group who walked across the safe bridge. The researchers concluded that the ‘scary bridge group’ mistook their heightened emotional state from crossing the wobbly bridge for an emotional arousal towards the woman. In effect, they confused the source of their elevated mood and acted accordingly.

Takeaway – People’s mood state affects how they receive messages. Next time you suggest an activation, bring up this little gem to explain how connecting your clients brand with the heightened emotions exuded at an event, such as the tennis, can cause people to have a stronger positive connection with your clients brand.

Winning – 10 IQ points achieved.

Now, let’s make things a little more personal. If you’re stuck on ideas for your next date, why not mix it up with some behavioural psyc. Attraction levels and positive feelings increase if individuals experience a highly arousing (not sexual but physiological) event together. Anything that gets the heart racing and elevates emotions like watching a scary movie, riding on a roller coaster, or something as subtle as a heated Mario Kart battle should be enough to get things going.

Until next time, best of luck with your next dating adventure.