Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Less or More?

Something still doesn't sound right about selling on the LESS ticket.

Look at Does Consumer Happiness = Time or Money Spent?

Consumers do respond favourably to marketing that focuses on time, not money. Jennifer Aaker, Stanford Graduate School of Business.

“Ultimately, time is a more scarce resource — once it’s gone, it’s gone — and therefore more meaningful to us,” says Cassie Mogilner, who co-authored the study. “How we spend our time says so much more about who we are than does how we spend our money.”

The study found that mentioning time is effective because consumers are trying to make the most of it.

“When you refer to time, there’s a big social component that integrates the products you use with the people in your life, which makes the product experience more meaningful and richer,” says Mogilner.

The argument goes that... to shift your own advertising efforts away from money and better connect with customers’ time values, your marketing and branding efforts should:

1. Emphasise how the product frees up consumers’ valuable time

2. Build your brand as one that makes leisure or work time more enjoyable

3. Accentuate your product’s potential for relationship building (ie time spent with others)

Though countless successful marketing campaigns have been built around spending less, Aaker and Mogilner contend that referencing money will always have a slightly negative connotation.

Even when a purchase is a relative bargain, many buyers resent having to spend their money at all. Spending time, on the other hand, is something no one can avoid. So companies can improve sales by showing how they help consumers spend it well.

I am not entirely convinced by the argument. More often than not, advertising is no longer the best way to connect/attract/communicate with potential customers. The researchers' argument only refers to consumer products...

I think they are just saying what has been said here before which is that people buy your product for the 'afters'/benefits - what's left after the product has been bought/consumed. People don't buy your product for 'what it it does' - they buy it 'for what it does' does for them...!

- Does Consumer Happiness = Time or Money Spent? - the research
- Jennifer Aaker, Stanford Graduate School of Business
- Cassie Mogilner co-author
- Want to Increase Sales? Sell Time Not Cost - BNET
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