Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy” as Want to Read:
Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  783 ratings  ·  64 reviews
In this groundbreaking book Phil Barden reveals what decision science explains about people's purchase behaviour, and specifically demonstrates its value to marketing.

He shares the latest research on the motivations behind consumers' choices and what happens in the human brain as buyers make their decisions. He deciphers the 'secret codes' of products, services and brands
ebook, 280 pages
Published March 5th 2013 by Wiley (first published January 10th 2013)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Decoded, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Decoded

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  783 ratings  ·  64 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy
Jeff Tyler
Apr 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant! I'm a Brand Manager and this not only has fascinating and amazing insights that explain e.g. why we buy brands and how advertising works but it's not merely theory, it's really useful for my day job too. ...more
Apr 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
this is a very good book. no empty statements, no long description, no shit - only science, examples and hardcore. i would probably be even more impressed if did not read many books on the related subjects already (neuroscience, neuromarketing, brain functions, motivation theory). still, i like how the stuff i read earlier came up in this book and contributed to the whole system

the only reason i'm giving it 4 stars and not 5 is my personal interests - this book focuses mostly on material product
Ethan Decker
Aug 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I've read a lot of marketing & marketing science books lately. This one's a great, solid overview of a lot of stuff. I'll be referring to this one at work, for sure. And some of the anecdotes are really thought-provoking for anyone in marketing and advertising.

I worry about the neuropsych results that are based on tiny samples, especially the ones that aren't validated by in-market results. But it's compelling stuff, and important to anyone who recognizes the massive biases and limitations of s
May 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books i have read so far this year, as a product designer i believe there is a huge potential in the insights that this book offers... I will definetly be reading this book several times in the next few years, so much to learn about in the field of human behavior.
Shubham Bansal
Nov 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Shubham by: Avnish Anand
Why people pay $5 for a water bottle?

This is by far one of the best marketing books which deal with consumer's subconscious behaviour. This book builds upon the theory given by Late Prof. Clayton M. Christensen in his book Competing Against Luck, in a more statistical way. Prof. Clayton provides a theoretical framework based on these decades of experience. This book supports that theory by citing studies conducted in the field of neuroscience, psychology using advance technologies like fMRI.

Dec 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Nice little discovery in the little free library across from a fraternity house in town. Thanks, guys, hope you did well in your marketing class!

Targeted towards marketers Decoded is more useful than interesting. It focuses on the neuroscience and mechanisms driving people to spend money. After each chapter there's a summary of what we've just learned (very justified because I'd sometimes forget to follow) and how to apply this knowledge in the marketing work so it felt a bit like a textbook.
Apr 22, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting look at marketing in light of recent scientific research into neurological workings of the brain. A bit technical for me but lots worth learning and thinking about if you are in sales or marketing, or own your own business.
Tarek Amr
Nov 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, ebook
Such a great book. The book shows us how branding works in order to influence our purchase decisions. I've written a detailed review for the book here.
Ярослав Бойко
on the book by Phil Bardeen
"Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy»

"Consumers are willing to pay 2-3 pounds for Starbucks coffee, although they know that for the money spent on two beakers, they could buy a whole pot in a supermarket. So, apparently, they are buying something else but coffee. "

Each of us makes purchases and they are not always rational, at least we do not always seem so at first glance. It is worth reflecting on what influences us when choosing one or another produc
Jarmaine Alcantara
Nov 15, 2020 rated it liked it
Di ko tinapos.. 1/4 into the book and still got nothing new. Legit overview lang siya ng behavioral science and marketing combined. If you've read the classic behavioral economics books, no need to read this one. Para siyang summary of those books. I didnt read it all, pero how can I if I feel like wasting time rereading something i already read before? Yun lang. Very sad kasi feel ko ubos na significant findings related to BE and all i can do is execute it the best way i know how. siguro if i w ...more
Alessandro Perilli
Jan 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science
A really good book if you are into cognitive psychology and are ready to see marketing in a completely different way. Not every part of the book is equally convincing. Especially towards the end, certain conclusions would require a lot more evidence to be believed. That said, the book remains a great starting point to explore neuromarketing.

Be sure to have read "Thinking, Fast and Slow" before starting Decoded.
Iurii Znak
Jan 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, business
Quick-to-read book which shares a lot of insights on customers purchasing behaviors. A big number of examples and detailed explanations helps to understand this complex topic with ease. Will be very useful for people working in the marketing field, especially those, who work with B2C products/services.
Tiago Soares
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very good book on behavioural economics, human behaviour and marketing. Definitely a book to read for someone who works in marketing. I must say it has some advanced information, and even though it's easy to read, and maybe understand... it is not so easy to apply. ...more
Ekaterina Ilushina
The book is particularly good at explaining what failed and why. Filled up with interesting examples of how neuromarketing can be used to sell things. At the end of the book there is a very good reading list!
Jan 29, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It`s ok for beginners in management field. I`ve already read the main ideas and thoughts of the author. That`s why I don`t enjoy this book. Oh, and russian edition has an awful typesetting. Maybe it`s a cause of my dislike too. ...more
Ipshita Biswas
Jun 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those "Must read" books. ...more
Aug 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Perfect book for marketers, salesman, entrepreneurs, show how to dominate stadium out and sell more. I highly recommend
Vinayak Malik
Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
An interesting read. Let me sum it for you : Context is everything. For more details on exact terms Read on
Chris Perry
Dec 28, 2019 rated it liked it
The book does a really good job at tying modern psychological concepts to branding and marketing. I unfortunately felt it fell short and only focused on consumer items in a grocery store.
Pawel Loedl
Apr 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely essential for all in marketing. Engaging, interesting and useful.
Thao Tien
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Amazing. I love this book
Vahagn Keshishyan
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Very interesting book and everyone can understand it. Meanwhile it is a big treasure for marketers. Must read. Every page gave me a new idea for promotion products and how to sell them in a right way.
Athar Naser
Mar 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Great read that is very interesting to marketers and advertisers everywhere. The concepts are simplified and applied in a relevant context with real world examples. There is prospectively a lack of depth for those wishing to translate these learnings into the boardroom or the office, but by and large it gives a good overview of the key concepts that drive brand selection. If you have never broached the subject of cognitive psychology before then this book loses a little as it only touches on som ...more
Michael Hirn
Feb 09, 2017 rated it liked it

"Decoded" is as mostly theoretical expository work and inquiries on the consumer decision-making process when purchasing goods.

The stated goal of the author was to provide marketers with a scientific framework to be more effective at their work. At this inquiry, the author succeeded partly. He succeeded in gathering relevant research from the new field of behavioral economics and provide an initial overview but failed in providing a sound and consistent framework that brings the cited researc
Feb 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful and interesting, eye opener, would like to purchase this book and keep as a reference.
Rara Rizal
Jan 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Reading the book was such an enjoyable experience. I shook my head and laughed countless times at how small changes in context or framing of an object could significantly change the way we look at it. I think on some level we all know that our decision-making process is not only driven by attitude and reason, but also by the way problems or objects are being presented. This is a great book for those interested in human processing behavior, especially for those who have previously read Daniel Kah ...more
Rich B
Jun 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: business
An interesting read for anyone interested in the intersection between marketing and psychology. It's (mostly) easy to follow with lots of examples and clear points.

A few times it did veer into the territory of being a bit too pleased with itself and become a bit lecture-like (like an advertising agency planner showing off how clever he was) and most of the case study examples did come from a fairly narrow field (FMCG, durables, cars) so maybe not great for every category.

But overall, it made se
Jul 16, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: male-author
I'd have probably liked this book more if I wasn't already familiar with many of the studies Barden related to the readers. But I'm not in business/marketing/economics, and if I am familiar with most of the studies, then I suspect this could have been much, much better. It was ok. Readable and well-organized for the most part. Just not much new material to be found... ...more
Jana Kovářová
Mar 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is honestly one of the best books on marketing and consumer behaviour I've ever read. It's interesting, packed with more tips on research papers and books to read, with great case studies and suggestions. ...more
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Choice Factory: 25 Behavioural Biases That Influence What We Buy
  • How Brands Grow: What Marketers Don't Know
  • Alchemy: The Surprising Power of Ideas That Don't Make Sense
  • How Brands Grow: Part 2: Emerging Markets, Services, Durables, New and Luxury Brands
  • Ogilvy on Advertising
  • How not to Plan: 66 ways to screw it up
  • Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work
  • Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping
  • Eat Your Greens
  • Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy and the New Science of Desire
  • Atlas Shrugged, Part A
  • Пиши, сокращай
  • Advertising For Skeptics
  • The Behaviour Business: How to Apply Behavioural Science for Business Success
  • Хочу и буду. Принять себя, полюбить жизнь и стать счастливым
  • The Long and the Short of it: Balancing Short and Long-Term Marketing Strategies
  • Непобедимое солнце
  • Brainfluence: 100 Ways to Persuade and Convince Consumers with Neuromarketing
See similar books…

Related Articles

Last year, Buzzfeed culture writer Anne Helen Petersen struck a chord with her viral article “How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation.”...
111 likes · 17 comments
“The autopilot needs about 10,000 hours’ experience of a specific topic before intuition develops fully.” 0 likes
“In making decisions, conscious or unconscious, big or small, about our lives and what we buy and do, the context, framework, decision interface, medium and pathways through which we reach decisions may have a greater influence on the decisions we take than the long-term consequences of the decision.” 0 likes
More quotes…