How would you describe yourself as consumer? When you buy a product are you careful about the price, the quality… ? Or do you simply take the product from the shelf and put it in the basket ? Do you feel better buying a product of a very well known brand, maybe expensive, rather than a product of a mostly unknown brand, maybe even cheaper?
Most people prefer to buy a famous brands product because, unconsciously, they feel safe and they feel accepted by others because it’s popular in certain social contexts.
Speaking of social contexts… every human being aims to feel part of a community and to prove to other people how much they can share. So far so good but as time went on companies started to study the consumers behavior in order to adapt their product based on the consumers needs. Companies also understood how to push them to buy products that they don’t really need. How? They learned the art of persuasion ;). Tons of advertising on tv, radio, in cinemas, online, on the street reminds you that you need to buy that specific product if you want to be cool, fit, if you want to be the perfect housewife etc..
This strategy is applicable in any sector, let’s make some examples.
— Beauty —
Is it true that an expensive cream sold in perfumery has ALWAYS the same effect on your skin as a cream purchased in a supermarket or a 7/11? If your response is the expensive cream is better just because of the price, I recommend you to read a Sweden research published on 19 March 2007 about the influence of a cream presentation: Facial anti‐wrinkle cream: influence of product presentation on effectiveness: a randomized and controlled study
You will change your mind 😉
And what about the same type of products but with different conditions of use based on the part of your body, or the day time? For example, do you think you really need a day and a night cream? Read the ingredients on both packaging and then you will decide if it’s worth it!
— Household products —
Most of us live in apartments but have you ever considered how much time we actually spend in our house? Well, let’s say we work 8 hours a day, five days a week and maybe during the weekend we want to chill out outside, visit friends etc… So do you really think that your house needs to be clean as a hospital?
There is no substantial difference between detergents if you compare the ingredients but there is if you compare costs. You can save a lot of money and sanitize your house by purchasing basic detergents like ammonia or vinegar, not to mention that the environment will thank you!
(Psst… most of the household products can be prepared at home 😉 )
— Fashion —
Fashion is one the sector that has a massive control over consumers minds, as a consumer you are overwhelmed by advertising of new collections with a clear message: if you want to be cool you have to renew your closet (and of course spend money!).
Do you really need a new super cool jumper even if you are certain that in a couple of months the same item will be replaced by a new one (of course cooler than yours because it’s the brand that tells you that)? You will add it with the other bunch of items in your wardrobe.
Do you want to free yourself from this vicious circle? Purchase good quality items in order to be sure that you will wear them for more that one season and at the same time basic so you can create lots of outfits for different occasions.
— Tech —
Many of us buy computers, smartphones, tablets based on the look and feel. It doesn’t matter if a pc costs thousands of euros and you want to use it just to check your Facebook notifications or to watch videos on Youtube, you will buy that version because in your mind a cheaper one with a worst look and feel will make you a loser.
If you are not an expert in this field, search for information on tech forums (for example Tom’s Hardware, TechRadar, GSMArena etc…) where there are reviews, comments and advice on every product you can find on the market.
- High price doesn’t mean the product is always better than a cheaper one
- Instead of buying dozens of products try to find how to use what you have for different purposes (ex for cleaning use vinegar or baking soda)
- Before purchasing something think carefully if you really need that product
- Do not buy a product just hoping to be accepted by someone