As you know, there is quite a psychology involved with crafting the right marketing message. If you understand what people need, then you can serve them the right message. This marketing psychology stems from the principle of a gent called Abraham Maslow.

He devised a pyramid that depicts the Hierarchy of Human Needs. You may even be using this tactic without realising it. But understanding the basic human needs allows you to target your marketing message in the right way.

Let’s explore Maslow’s Hierarchy Of Needs and how this can affect your marketing.


Maslow’s Hierarchy Of Needs and Marketing

Before we dive in any further, I wanted to explain what this theory is all about. Way back in the 1940s and 50s, Maslow came up with a theory that humans have 5 basic needs. The theory states that humans are motivated by certain needs and some take precedence over others. The basic needs must be satisfied to a certain degree before you can move onto satisfying the next level. That is why the theory is displayed in a pyramid structure.

The five levels begin with your basic physiological needs of food and water, then move onto safety, then love and belonging, then self-esteem and respect, and finally self actualisation.

Your position within the pyramid is not locked and can change depending on the circumstances going on in your life. If things are going great, you have a happy home life, your business is booming and you are achieving your goals, then you will be sitting in the higher tiers of the pyramid.

But if there is a sudden change in your industry and the sales dry up, you will likely move to the lower levels where you need to focus on meeting the basic needs of food, shelter and safety before considering anything else. Once your business recovers and the clients return, you will also return to the higher levels of the pyramid.

So how can you use this theory in your marketing?

Marketing To The Core Human Needs

It is important to know where your clients sit in this hierarchy so that you can understand what they need and want. When you know this, you can market your services to them with the correct messaging.

There is no point trying to pitch high end luxury travel to the people in the lower portion of the pyramid as that is not a priority purchase for them. However, you could convince someone in the safety stage that they need a certain product as it will ensure the safety of their family. Likewise, you could successfully market non-essential services like self-fulfilment and beauty services to those in the higher tiers as they want to create the best version of themselves. The same marketing campaign would have little impact on the lower tiers as their money is reserved for essentials.

Even though this principle was devised 70 years ago, it is still relevant in modern marketing. The short and tall of it is that you connect best with your target market if you appeal to their needs in a relevant and meaningful way.

If you understand their biggest pain point and offer a solution to that, then you will convince your prospective clients to work with your business. To do this you need to ensure that your messaging is clear, well thought out and targeted to the right corner of the market. Remember to inject your personality and to tell the right kind of story to be relatable.

Don’t forget to evaluate the market from time to time. As I mentioned above, people can move fluidly between the levels of the pyramid depending on their current situation and the status of the world around them. Know where your product or service fits into this pyramid and you can always ensure that your messaging is effective.


Sometimes it can be difficult to pinpoint where your products and services sit in relation to the different levels of human need. So if you need help deciphering how Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs impacts on your business, give me a bell. I can help you nail the messaging in your marketing plan.


Don’t want to miss our latest blogs? Sign up below to receive this straight to your inbox.