Biophilic Marketing

titleWhat is ‘Biophilia’?

Biophilia is an individual’s innate desire to converge with nature, to be a part of it and to incorporate it in whatever way we can into our lives.

What is ‘Biophilic Marketing’?

Biophilic Marketing refers to the ability of learning the principles of marketing from nature and using them to connect the organization’s offerings to the customer in an efficient and sustainable manner.

Why Learn from Nature?

First of all, there is very little that isn’t nature, but to be more specific, we can learn from the natural environment and its constituents- both living and non living:
– Whatever exists in nature has been tried an tested for millennia.
Natural selection has ensured that only the best survive.
– Nothing in nature exists in isolation. The subject is as important as the relationship it shares with others.

Marketing in Business

Broken down to basics, marketing is the act of ensuring that quality goods and services are connected to the target customers for generating benefits for the organization that has produced them.

Marketing in Nature

All organisms are programmed to market themselves, that is the way propagation takes place: in both animals as well as plants.
The mating game in animals is an obvious example, but there’s a beautiful example of how plants market to insects in order to propagate and hence ensure the survival of their species. This has been described in the following page.

A Pollen Story

In a garden far far away there was a shrub. It had grown beautifully from a tiny sapling into a strong, thorny plant. With age comes responsibility, and it knew that it must, like the rest of its kind, now ensure the survival of its species. Luckily, mother nature had taken care of it all, for the next day it produced flower buds. The buds grew and grew, protected by the thorns, until it was time for them to blossom. And then the flowers were revealed:
Beautiful, bright roses! The heavenly fragrance, the bright colour, and the sweet nectar they contained drew the attention of insects far and wide. They quite literally made a bee-line for it. Bees came, so did lady-bugs, butterflies and several others.

They all went and took a long drink of the delicious nectar. Unknown to them, while they were busy sipping, the flower quitely put pollen on them. When they went to a different flower, the pollen brushed against the required parts, and this caused the flowers, after some time, to become fruits. The seeds in these fruits would ensure that the plant  species lived on.
The insects went happily back home, and spread the news:  there was a beautiful rose plant and it had delicious nectar! The insects kept coming and the rose plant continued to thrive.

Making Sense in Marketing Terms

Rose Plant: Company / Organization
Flower: Branding & Marketing
Insects: Customers
Pollen: Brand Value

Capturing the Customer’s Attention:

The branding must create a Mass Appeal[1] through carefully crafted Multi-sensory Stimuli[2], catering to an identified Common Driver[3]. This would ensure that the customer’s attention is captured by the organization.

The Product/ Offering:

The offering itself must be of such nature and quality that the customers become its proponents. The marketing must be congruent[4] to the product.

Promotion and Ecosystem:

The customers must Unwittingly[5] carry forward the brand value to other potential customers and thus help create an Ecosystem[6] in which several such people partake whole-heartedly.


The organization could evolve by using the concept of Natural Selection[7] to improve existing offerings or even create new offerings. The best attributes of the existing offerings could be identified and carried forward into the next generation of offerings. An adaptive organization will reflect the same in its products, and hence will be more likely to survive.

[1] Mass Appeal: The Flower as well as the nectar must appeal to a wide variety of

[2] Multi-sensory Stimuli: The flower stimulates multiple senses to evoke a stronger
response-Visual (colour), Olfactory (fragrance), Gustatory (taste of nectar),
Tactile (Petal surface texture, pollen texture).

[3] Common Driver: The plant caters to the most common driver known to living
organisms- Hunger.

[4] No matter how pretty the flower, insects will not come if the nectar isn’t

[5] Unwittingly: The pollen is carried forward by the insects and they don’t even
know it. This is how the brand value should propagate.

[6] Ecosystem: Once the nectar has satisfied the insects, they spread the
message to their respective communities. This spreads the brand value by
word of mouth and personal guarantee. No false/external incentives are
provided by the plant to the insects to advertise its products. An ecosystem
of ardent customers is thus formed.

[7] Natural Selection: Natural selection is the process in nature by which
organisms better adapted to their environment tend to survive and
reproduce more than those less adapted to their environment.

© 2016 Suneet Kumar. All Rights Reserved.

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