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Paul Zak — Immersion: The Science of the Extraordinary and the Source of Happiness

Immersion: The Science of the Extraordinary and the Source of Happiness (book cover)

Shermer and Zak discuss:

  • What are neuroeconomics, neuromanagement, and neuromarketing?
  • Zak’s work with the CIA and DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency)
  • What is immersion and how is it quantified (with a formula)?
  • monotony of the mundane
  • ordinary and extraordinary
  • storytelling and immersion
  • peak-end stories and immersion
  • advertising/commercials immersion
  • entertainment immersion
  • education immersion
  • attractions immersion
  • retail immersion
  • what makes a great movie and movie trailer
  • what makes successful unscripted TV shows
  • novelty
  • sensitivity training programs in universities and corporations
  • how to give a TED talk
  • immersion and political candidates
  • marriage and immersion
  • The Bachelor: Ben’s season
  • happiness, flourishing, meaningfulness, purposefulness and immersion.

Paul Zak is a professor of economics, psychology, and management at Claremont Graduate University. He is ranked in the top 0.3 percent of most-cited scientists with over 170 published papers and more than 18,000 citations. He helped start several interdisciplinary fields, including neuroeconomics, neuromanagement, and neuromarketing. Paul is a regular TED speaker, four-time tech entrepreneur, and corporate consultant. He frequently appears in the media, including Good Morning America, the BBC, NBC’s The Today Show, CNN, and Fox & Friends. His groundbreaking research has been reported in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Time, The Economist, Scientific American, Forbes, and many other publications.

About the Book

No one raves about boring movies, bland customer service experiences, or sleep-inducing classes. The world is rapidly transforming into an experience economy as people increasingly crave extraordinary experiences. Experience designers, marketers, entertainment producers, and retailers have long sought to fill this craving. Now, there’s a scientific formula to consistently create extraordinary experiences. The data show that those who use this formula increase the impact of experiences tenfold.

Creating the extraordinary used to be extraordinarily hard. Immersion offers a framework for transforming nearly any situation from ordinary to extraordinary. Based on twenty years of neuroscience research from his lab and innumerable client applications, Paul Zak explains why brains crave the extraordinary. Clear instructions and examples show listeners and readers exactly how to create amazing experiences for customers, prospects, employees, audiences, and learners.

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This episode was released on March 11, 2023.

For those seeking a sound scientific viewpoint


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