attraction marketing

What Is Attraction Marketing? (And Why Big Brands Need It)

Jonas Sickler, Digital Marketing Analyst

Key Points

  • Attraction marketing encourages potential customers to make a purchase without actually selling, but by creating desire.
  • Brands must create trust between themselves and their audience for attraction marketing to be effective.
  • 86% of consumers say authenticity is a key factor when it comes to deciding which brands they like and support.

Capturing consumer attention has never been more challenging for brands. Marketing teams have to compete with the constant stream of noise that includes social media, Netflix, YouTube, emails, text messages, and more. Increased competition for prime digital advertising makes it difficult for brands to get their message in front of their audience.

To win over today’s customers you need more than flashy advertisements and catchy taglines. You need to connect more personally. To stand out in a crowded marketplace, one strategy that many brands are turning to is attraction marketing.

Read on to learn what attraction marketing is, why it matters, and how your brand can implement it.

What is attraction marketing?


Attraction Marketing

Attraction marketing is a type of digital marketing that generates interest and desire for your products or services through positive emotion. The goal of attraction marketing is to get people to connect with your brand rather than trying to force a sale or manipulate them into buying something they don’t want.

In other words, attraction marketing is all about creating a relationship with your potential customers. You want them to see you as an authority in your field andas a brand they can trust. When people trust you and feel like they know you, they are more likely to buy from you.

Inbound marketing is one form of attraction marketing. By consistently creating quality content, you attract potential customers by providing them with valuable information they can use. When you give people the information they desire, they’re more likely to trust you and want to do business with you.

The value of attraction marketing

Attraction marketing is an effective way to build your brand’s reputation. When you provide real value to customers instead of a sales pitch, they will view your brand as a credible source of information and advice.

Numerous brands have created huge amounts of growth through attraction marketing. For example, social media sharing app Buffer built their large customer base primarily by providing in-depth blog posts that were highly relevant to their audience and packed with value.

HubSpot fueled growth by providing their audience with an enormous library of valuable content for free, such as blog posts, videos, webinars, infographics, e-books, playbooks, tutorials, courses, and free tools.

Attraction marketing stands in stark contrast to sales-focused marketing methods. For example, putting a fake countdown timer on a page and saying that a deal is only available for the next two days, even though it’s always available.

Rather, the primary driver of attraction marketing is providing value, or helping people, or engaging with them first. Before asking someone to buy, you establish a relationship and an emotional connection with them.

7 Tips to master attraction marketing

It’s not hard to implement attraction marketing campaigns if you understand basic marketing techniques. Use the following attraction marketing tips and strategies to strengthen your efforts.

1. Understand your audience with personas

In order to attract potential customers, you first need to understand your audience. Who are they? What do they want and need? What are their biggest pain points? Create content that speaks to the struggles and desires of your audience. This will help you be much more successful in attracting them.

Creating audience personas is the first step to better understanding who you need to target with your content marketing. Personas are fictional representations of ideal customers that you can use to fine-tune your attraction marketing formula and ensure that your messaging is on target.

Consider including the following data when creating your buyer personas:

  • Age range
  • Income / revenue
  • Job title
  • Priorities
  • Goals
  • Challenges
  • Interests
  • Industry
  • Pain points
  • Products desired
  • Features desired
  • Preferred social media platform

After you create ideal personas of your target audience, take them even further by developing detailed customer journey maps to reveal each step of the buying process. Finally, build empathy maps to understand how your audience feels at crucial decision points within the journey.

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Buyer Persona Template

Build better buyer personas to meet your consumers’ needs.


2. Choose your digital marketing channels

In order to connect with your audience more effectively, you need to focus your marketing efforts on the channels they use. For example, if you learn that your audience is primarily millennials, you might choose TikTok as a primary online marketing channel.

The channels you choose should also be aligned with your customer journey. For example, to attract those in the awareness stage you might rely more heavily upon social media ads and content optimized for top-of-the-funnel keywords.

Those in the research stage might be more responsive to retargeting ads. Or they may respond to content that helps prospects better understand their primary problem, as well as potential solutions.

3. Tell a story through attraction marketing

Humans are hardwired to respond to engaging stories, so the best attraction marketing strategies incorporate storytelling into their content. Research has shown that people are much more likely to retain information when it is embedded in a story.

In a study conducted in 1969, researchers asked students at Stamford to memorize a list of 12 words. One group was given two minutes to study the list and attempt to memorize the words. Another group was given two minutes to create a story that incorporated all 12 words. The results? 93% of the students who created a story remembered the words. But just 13% of those who attempted to memorize them through repetition alone were able to remember them. Why?


93% of students could recall a list of words if they created a story using them

Stamford Study

Only 13% of students could recall a list of words without creating a story

Stamford Study

Because storytelling actually changes the brain’s chemistry by releasing the hormone Oxytocin (commonly called the “empathy drug”). When your audience listens to your story, they are physically more inclined to like your brand.

If you want to attract people to your brand, tell stories. Resist the urge to focus on your company, and instead tell stories that will resonate with the desires, goals, and pain points of your audience. Your stories should help potential customers connect the dots between their values and your brand.

If you want to attract people to your brand, tell stories.


4. Build an emotional connection

Like storytelling, building an emotional connection is a key component of attraction marketing. Though we like to think otherwise, humans are not primarily logical. In fact, according to Gerald Zaltman, Professor Emeritus at Harvard Business School, 95% of purchase decisions are based on the subconscious, rather than logic.

In light of that idea, creating an emotional connection with prospects is one of the primary ways to attract them to your brand. Positive emotional connections can be established in numerous ways, including:

  • Emotive storytelling
  • Providing exceptional value for free
  • Creating a superior customer experience
  • Genuinely caring about a prospect’s needs and desires
  • Responding promptly to questions or problems
  • Surprising them with delight

95% of purchase decisions are based on the subconscious, rather than logic

Gerald Zaltman, Harvard Business School

When you build an emotional connection with your audience, you create a bond that is difficult to break. According to research by Deloitte, 60% of long-term customers use emotional language to describe their connection to favored brands.

Emotionally connected customers are more loyal, which results in a higher retention rate and greater customer lifetime value. Additionally, people who feel connected to your brand are much more likely to become brand advocates, which can help attract more new leads to your business.

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Empathy Map Template

Empathize with your audience at key moments to deliver greater value.


5. Be authentic

Authenticity is essential if you want to build an emotional bond with your audience and attract new prospects. It can be hard to believe any brand is genuine when they are trying to sell us something.

But, when you’re authentic, your audience can feel it. They know you’re not just trying to sell them a product or service; you care about helping them solve their problem. According to research from Stackla, 86% of consumers say authenticity is a key factor when it comes to deciding which brands they like and support.

Being authentic also requires that you be transparent. When you make mistakes, own up to them and show your audience you’re committed to making things right.

As the research from Deloitte notes:

…most customers recognize that missteps happen, and are willing to remain loyal to a brand so long as they receive a straightforward, honest, and empathetic response to concerns. When they feel that their issue has been addressed, 77% of people will stick with a brand.

At the core, authenticity means treating prospects and customers as real people, not just potential sales. The more authentic you are, the more you will attract new customers and retain existing ones.

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Content Strategy Playbook

The Fortune 500 CMO’s guide to content strategy.


6. Create trust

Successful attraction marketing creates trust between your brand and your audience. People want to buy from brands they can trust to do the right thing.

Unfortunately, most individuals have had at least one, if not many, negative experiences with untrustworthy brands. This leaves consumers with some hesitation and skepticism when interacting with brands, especially if it’s their first time.

To overcome this, brands should establish strategies, such as feedback loops, that build trust.

Research by the Edelman Group showed that 81% of consumers listed trustworthiness as a deciding factor in whether they purchase from a brand. Brands that are seen as trustworthy have 33% higher loyalty and 27% more customer advocacy than brands that are not.


81% of consumers list trustworthiness as a deciding factor in whether they purchase from a brand.

Edelman Group

Creating trust with your audience requires consistent effort on multiple fronts. Obviously, it starts with providing an outstanding product or service, but it goes well beyond that. You also build trust by:

  • Addressing customer problems quickly and thoroughly
  • Being transparent about key information like total costs, refund policies, automatic renewals, etc.
  • Asking customers to leave online reviews on relevant sites (Google, Yelp, Capterra, etc.)
  • Directly addressing negative reviews and making a good-faith effort to resolve any customer issues
  • Having a personable and likable brand personality

Creating trust is not hard to do. If you treat people with respect and like you would want to be treated, you’ll build a trustworthy relationship with your target consumers.

7. Engage with your audience

Finally, if you want to succeed with attraction marketing you need to engage with your audience. Open multiple avenues of communication so you can meet consumers on the social media platforms and channels they use regularly, whether LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc.

An easy way to engage with customers is through your social media accounts. Respond to comments, offer helpful tips, and address any problems that arise. Social media marketing tools make it easy to monitor mentions of your brand across all platforms and then respond accordingly.

Beyond social media, other ways to engage with your audience include:

  • Offering live chat functionality on your website
  • Responding to comments and reviews on relevant sites
  • Sending quizzes that allow you to learn more about your customers
  • Answering questions on Q&A sites like Quora
  • Hosting live streams and webinars with specific time set aside for Q&A
  • Excelling at customer support

When you consistently engage with your audience, you appear more authentic, build emotional connections, and create trust.

How brands can use attraction marketing

Attraction marketing can be used by brands to accomplish a number of key objectives.

Lead generation

Generating leads is one of the primary ways attraction marketing is used. By creating high-quality content at every stage of the marketing funnel and making it easily accessible, brands can attract potential customers to their websites. Then, site visitors can then be converted into leads.

To successfully use attraction marketing as a lead generation strategy, you must deliver value. You can’t expect prospects to opt in to your content marketing funnel if your offer in exchange is of low value.

To successfully use attraction marketing as a lead generation strategy, you must deliver value.


Boost organic search traffic

If your primary focus is search engine optimization (SEO), attraction marketing may significantly boost your search rankings, organic search traffic, and ultimately your online business.

You can find topics and keywords your prospects are interested in at each stage of the funnel using keyword research. From there, you can build a content strategy that demonstrates your expertise and trustworthiness

Lastly, you should ensure your content aligns with user search intent and provides more value than what is currently ranking on page one. This will help both individual pages and your entire website rise in the search rankings.

Thought leadership

If you want to establish yourself or your brand as a thought leader within your industry, attraction marketing is an effective strategy. 

Attraction marketing methods allow you to share your unique perspective and build a following of engaged prospects who care about what you have to say. The more you and your brand are positioned as thought leaders, the more individuals and other brands will be interested in working with you.

Establishing your brand as a thought leader involves more than just publishing high-quality content on your website. It requires carefully curating your brand’s presence across multiple channels.

Your website, content hub, social media profiles, and any other owned channels (video, podcasts, etc.) reflect your brand’s expertise, authority, and depth of knowledge.

Appearances on third-party platforms like podcasts and guest blog posts are another way to increase your brand’s visibility and attract more prospects.

Attracting your way to success

Attraction marketing isn’t a silver bullet that will suddenly solve all your problems and transform you into the next Apple or Amazon. However, when you combine attraction marketing methods with a superior user experience at each step of the customer journey, you can gain a distinct advantage over your competitors.

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