How basic laws of Physics can teach you Marketing

As a kid, you might have taken elementary physics classes. But did you think that those lessons can actually teach you a thing or two about marketing? 

physics vs marketing


The majority of you will shake your head signaling a “no”  and believe me neither did I before I saw a video by Dan Cobley. So let’s walk down the memory lane and brush up some fundamental laws of Physics to understand how they apply to today’s marketing.

1) Newton’s First Law of Motion

Heavier the object, the more force is required to speed it up or slow it down.

For example, It will take more of your strength to push a bowling ball one foot than to push a marshmallow one foot.

Similarly, more the bigger brand, more the baggage it has, the more amount of force is needed to change its positioning. This is exactly why companies like P&G keep brands separate, like Ariel and Pringles rather than having one large parent brand. 

The solution is to think about the portfolio of brands or maybe new brands for new ventures.

2) Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle

According to the principle, it is impossible to measure exactly the state (position) and the momentum of the particle, because the act of observing it, changes it.

Dan gave an interesting example of the group of moms who are talking about their wonderful children in a focus group, and how almost none of them buy lots of junk food. And yet, McDonald’s sells millions of burgers every year.

In marketing, the act of observing consumers changes their behavior.

So try to measure what customers actually do, rather than what they say they’ll do or anticipate they’ll do.

3) The Scientific Method

It says that you cannot prove a hypothesis through observation, you can only disprove it.

It means a single contradiction is enough to blow your theory out of the water. For instance, Deepwater Horizon oil spill incident destroyed BP’s hard earned credential as an environmentally friendly brand.

Likewise, you can invest for a long time in a brand, but a single contrary observation is sufficient enough to destroy customers’ belief.

As a precaution, try to be careful and avoid screw-ups that can potentially undermine your brand.

4) The Second Law of Thermodynamics

It says that entropy which is a measure of the disorder of a system always increases.

For example, you can only put forth your message to the customers, how the perceive that message is totally up to them. Once the message reaches your customers, you lose control of where it goes.

Correspondingly, your brand is dispersed, it gets more chaotic. It is out of your control. But, it is actually a good thing. This distribution of brand energy brings your brand closer to the people, which is good for your brand.

You can only embrace the dispersion and find a way to work with it.

Concluding up, isn’t it amazing how nature provides us analogies to understand things in a better way? So take a minute and try to figure out how these marketing lessons fit into your scheme of things. Take all the above points into consideration before devising a marketing strategy for your business.