Certainly among the more forward thinking magazines in terms of content, New Scientist has this week boldly gone where no magazine (they “suspect”) has gone before: neuromarketing.
Neuromarketing is a from of marketing that uses brain-imaging technology to “peek into people’s heads and discover what they really want”.
You may find that sinister. What right does anyone have to try to read your mind? Or perhaps you are sceptical and consider the idea laughable. But neuromarketing, once dismissed as a fad, is becoming part and parcel of modern consumer society. So we decided to take a good look at it – and try it out ourselves.
A group of New Scientist readers – 19 men, to be precise – were connected to an electroencephalograph (EEG) machine shown various cover designs for the latest edition, after which NeuroFocus Europe, the company undertaking the tests, looked for “specific EEG patterns which the company believes betray whether or not a person will buy a product”.
The winning design is now on the newsstands. As for how it will sell, that is another test entirely.
You can also take part in the magazine’s “Rate the Cover” survey at this link.