When the Copy and the Photo Make Your Brain Hurt


We tend to save some of the more obscure, just interesting-to-be-interesting stuff for Fridays, it seems. This time, by way of Andy Rutledge, we found the post “Non-Verbal Communication and the Brain” from the Marketing & Strategy Innovation Blog. It’s all about the connection our brains make with physical appearance and actions, and the words that they’re associated with. And the post ties that into marketing campaigns and print layouts where a failure to match the two leads to a failure in really being able to sell the product. Here’s some:

The current issue of Scientific American Mind, in Gestures Offer Insight, reports on research by neuroscientist Spencer D. Kelly of Colgate University who is studying the effects of gestures by measuring “event related potentials” — brain waves that form peaks and valleys. Measured with an electroencephalograph, the patterns show how different areas of the brain process information. One particular valley, or negative peak, has been dubbed N400 — it occurs when we stumble over an inappropriate word. (The article cites the example, “He spread his toast with socks.”)