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3 Steps to Subliminal Search Engine Marketing

3 Steps to Subliminal Search Engine Marketing

Statutory word of caution:

This topic is for educational purposes only, and the use of subliminal advertising is governed by laws, the infringement of which in such countries, is an offense. Please refer to the internet and the respesubliminal-hypnoctive government bodies to know more about such countries and their laws governing the use of subliminal messages in advertising. The aim of this post is to highlight possible creative strategies in Search engine marketing, within the strictures of the law and not promote unlawful practices.

Subliminal Messaging: The Science

Subliminal messaging is a science that has its roots in Advertising Psychology. This science makes use of words, catch phrases, images, and frames to form coherent subconscious stimuli. These stimuli when flashed or displayed in a subtle form are not detected by the conscious mind. Even if the viewer of the advertisement is aware of the concept.


We will see how it could be used as a strategy in Search Engine Marketing.  It is said in the world of advertising, “A great advertisement is one that sells what it does not show.” These words are apt to sum up the science and art of subliminal messaging in advertising.

The picture to the left, represents Subway’s creative take on subliminal advertising. The advertisement blatantly uses the words subliminal message. Anyone whose visited a Subway chain of eatery immediately identifies with part of their logo SUB and the brand colors. It’s an immediate brand recall for the consumer.

A subliminal message could be flashed as part of an animated image or it may presented in the form of a sentence or a message.

The FedEx logo to the right carries an arrow symbol, the arrow is a symbol for forward momentum and most aptly represents their trade craft, an example of a more permanent location of a subliminal in a brand logo.

Presenting in a sentence form makes it innocuous until a closer inspection is warranted. Subliminal influences are categorized as unconscious influences, that work on the innate desires of the subconscious mind.

It is an influence that we are not consciously aware of, in many an instance if the awareness exists, it could be overridden by giving it the necessary nudge. This science has been in use in the world of advertising as early as 1957. Brands like Coca Cola have used it in one or the other form. A lot of research on the subject and its pros and cons has been in publication on the internet as well as in white papers for the curious seeker.1103-610x360

Try and spot the Bear standing on its hind legs in the logo of the iconic Chocolate brand Toblerone.


Did you spot the 2 in Twins, the 1 0 binary in the VAIO, the Chicken in Chickfila is obvious, The partial 8’s in EIGHT. All creative sellers.

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For more amazing hidden creatives and what they mean, check this link out.

Search Engine Marketing and Subliminal Tactics:

  • Search Network Advertisements

There exists the idea of crafting, small and catchy phrases using this functionality offered by Google Adwords, in conjunction with the extensions it offers. Extensions could be used here to fiddle around with the idea of adding more text in restricted real estate in terms of text restrictions imposed by Google. Combining catchy phrases with a call to act is a good idea. This is a good platform for those wanting to experiment with text based messages. The playing field is restricted here, but if you do succeed with this, you will master a very sharp way of creating convincing advertisements.

  • Display Network Advertisements

There is a lot of ground to play around within the display networks. Here, going for a Cost per thousand impressions (CPM), strategy is key to using subliminal tactics. This bidding strategy is centered around generating brand awareness and recall, versus generating clicks. That is not to say that the CPC strategy cannot be used.


An example of using images that contain subliminal material in advertisements that feature within Google display networks should work well, in terms of generating brand awareness, and brand recall.

The use of images with enticing graphics carrying a subliminal within them works to drive the message home. The use of impressions and the display networks is a suggestion here because of the logic that subliminal messaging in advertising works best when it is flashed over and over again with a periodic frequency. This frequency factor is taken care of by the CPM strategy.


Display networks here are the preferred mode of delivery because you get to choose the interests and the cost factoring.

Logos for brand recall:

Logos are a very powerful means of brand recall and re-marketing strategy. A well-crafted logo could really take you a long way. Using an enticing logo in conjunction with lettering and catch phrases also works.

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  • Videos are the way for you if you have a higher response images

Videos are also another medium of delivering subliminals. Well crafted videos containing subliminals also get the message across. In fact, the tadded audio and video stimulus can also serve as a potent mix to the method of delivery. Adding a few frames carrying the message in a subtle form for a very brief period of the video also does the trick. This adds value if the advertisement is creative.

630761-31861Its all up to how you use the resource, creatively and keeping in mind the sensitivities of the consumer and the law of the land governing the use of such a science. The thing with using subliminal advertising is, the best advertisements are the ones that get your attention, sell the products or the service, without the subliminal message being spotted.

What if it is spotted..? Your advertisement gains entry into the subliminal hall of fame, as an example of how its done.

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