Thursday, January 12, 2017

Counter Counterfeits’ Attraction

Many consumers choose lookalike house brands over the national brand alternatives. Sometimes the motivation is trust in and loyalty to the retailer carrying the house brand. Another common motivation is to save money. That same budget consciousness also results in what researchers at American University and University of Minnesota identify as a growing attraction to counterfeit versions of luxury brands.
     The strength of that attraction is influenced by the perceived social class of others that the shopper has seen or heard about using counterfeits of any sort of item. As you might expect, people were less likely to select the knockoff items when they believed the primary purchasers were of a lower social class than themselves. But as you might not anticipate, an attraction to the genuine article grew when people perceived that such a purchase would allow them to claim superiority over others from their in-group who were using a counterfeit version of that same item.
     Therefore, if you learn from a customer that their friends are using a counterfeit, you could turn that into a benefits statement for selling the genuine article. Because counterfeit goods are usually of inferior quality, you’ll be doing a service by helping those shoppers question whether they’re being fooled. Acknowledge the compelling appeal of counterfeits which seem genuine, then present the advantages of buying the real deal. Address the purchase motivations:
  • Interest in obtaining value for money. Show the shopper how prices for counterfeits might, in reality, not be dramatically better than what you can offer. So-called discounts claimed on 8,000 rogue sites monitored by brand protection firm MarkMonitor were often in the range of 25% to 50%—not too far beyond what a shopper might obtain during your special promotion sales. 
  • Pride in being able to find fakes which are indistinguishable from the genuine version. Know your merchandise well enough to describe the hidden features or easily overlooked benefits lacking in the counterfeit version. 
  • Antipathy toward the merchant. Researchers at St. John Fisher College, Southern Illinois University, and University of Wisconsin–Whitewater found that people who habitually seek out counterfeits can have felt unappreciated by merchants when purchasing genuine versions of luxury items in the past. The attraction to counterfeit products could be a conscious or subconscious way of paying back legitimate retailers for these insults. Get to know the shoppers outside the store setting and treat them with obvious fairness. 
For your profitability: Sell Well: What Really Moves Your Shoppers

Click below for more: 
Maintain Conceptual Comfort of Copycats
Fake Out Those Shopping for Fakes
Defend Against Store Name Dilution

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