We have discussed many aspects of the elements that influence a person’s decision to change their behavior. We can learn from the marketing process and one recent bit of research is what is called “emotional motivation”.
Emotional motivation is a multi-dimensional construct that includes such things a social approval (“people who matter to me would approve of my choice”) and internalization (“my values and this idea is very similar”). Much of the direction in this type of research is on emotional functionality of a product (how a person perceives himself).
Understanding both emotional functionality and the effects of other major variables on product innovation success is a powerful capability that can shift the odds further in the communicator’s favor.
In media we have seen how stereotypes can influence a person’s decisions to affiliate with religious institutions. In India, Bollywood always portrayed a “christian” as a womanizer and meat eater. However, the Indian insider movement and following Jesus without identifying as a “Christian” seems to have overcome the stereotype. The image of the “holy roller” as a poor and uneducated perhaps negatively influenced more educated people away from the Pentecostal movements.
Perhaps the issues are related to how to develop emotional and functional images in the minds of the unreached. Reduce the barriers to “crossing over” by exposing them to stories of those who have encountered the living Christ in unconventional ways? The number of viewers who will access video online is expected to quadruple in the next few years and reach at least 1 billion worldwide in 2013. Could we record these stories and place them online?