Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Post Dramatic Tales for Post-Experience Goods

A Stanford Graduate School of Business newsletter posting presents tips from Professor Jennifer Aaker on how to tell a story which will sell. Here’s my adaptation and summary of her “Do this instead of that” advice:
  • Organize your story so the events build on one another, rather than freezing yourself into always starting at the earliest point. 
  • Use ample quotes and verbs in place of descriptions and adjectives. 
  • Select simple words instead of an abundance of technical jargon, especially if your story will be translated into different languages. 
  • Spend more time in your story on people than on objects. 
  • Resist urges to stretch the truth to where you’re breaking out in lies. 
  • To prolong interest, leave a few loose ends in your tale instead of tying it all neatly. 
     All these propel your story toward compelling drama. This is particularly helpful when you are selling what behavioral economists refer to as “post-experience goods.” Post-experience goods are different from search goods and experience goods.
  • Search goods have features, the value of which can be relatively easily assessed before purchase. A refrigerator and a car are search goods. Conciseness and humor add power to stories about search goods more than to stories about experience goods, according to researchers at National Tsing Hua University, National Central University, and Wistron Corporation, all headquartered in Taiwan. 
  • The values of experience goods are more difficult for the shopper to assess until they’ve been purchased and used. An insurance policy, gym membership, or unfamiliar food is an experience good. Authenticity and contrast are especially important in stories about experience goods. Money-back guarantees from a retailer increase purchase probability, according to studies at University of Texas-Austin, University of Muenster, and Catholic University of Eichstaett-Ingolstadt. At the same, the research findings indicate it’s more important to set clear conditions for returns with experience than with search goods. 
  • Vitamin pills and investment portfolios are examples of what are generally post-experience goods. These are items for which it is difficult to evaluate the advantages of having made the purchase even after the use. Consumers look to third-party information, such as government bodies and rating agencies. Another term behavioral economists use for post-experience goods is “credence goods.” And another place consumers attend to in making purchase decisions about these items are stories, the more dramatic the better, as long as authenticity is maintained. Personal testimonials along with the names do well. 
For your profitability: Sell Well: What Really Moves Your Shoppers

Click below for more: 
Craft Powerful Stories 
Encourage Balanced Customer Reviews

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