Saturday, June 16, 2012

Fallacy of the the "join today!" tactic

Image representing Richard Branson as depicted...
Sir Richard Branson, head of
The Virgin Group
Image via CrunchBase
Just the other day, I ran into a Richard Branson quote:

Business opportunities are like buses;
there’s always another one coming.”
- Richard Branson

This made me wonder, who does it seems every bit of sales technique, INCLUDING MLM, tries to make you "buy now, now, now!" hmmm?

Every "product infomercial" like those ovens, cookers, super knives, gadgets, and so on have "bonuses" and such to entice you to buy now. Free upgrade to express shipping, limited time offer, free accessory kit for first X orders, if you order in the next five minutes we will double your order... You probably seen them all.

Even the MLM seminars and such where they want you to join do the exact same thing, with the same sort of pitch: join today and start earning today, special quickstart bonus if you join today, raffle for a prize for people who join tonight, or something like that.

Ever wonder why?

In sales, there are entire BOOKS on how to "close" a sale, and they are applied persuasion techniques that appeal to every bias that you have to convince you to buy now. Here are some that would force you to go now:

Bandwagon fallacy -- the group joined, I should too (just watch those "sold" counters go up!)

Contrast Effect -- what I am experiencing now is weighed more in my decisions.

Hyperbolic discounting -- I care about immediate instead of future benefits

There are plenty more.

Furthermore, the salespeople are not stupid. They know if you go home and "sleep on it" you'll just do nothing, and they have no sale. So they will do EVERYTHING in their power to get you to commit NOW, now, and now. They want to "close the sale".

"Closing techniques" will be discussed in the future but the point is... there are always a bigger and better opportunity next. Never get "fixated" on this as if it's the one that'll make you rich.

On the other hand, you don't want to jump from program to program, always looking for the next big things. I call that "fishbowl hopping", where you're a goldfish jumping from one fishbowl to the other, hoping to find a really big pond. People who hop fishbowls will end up very very tired and spent a lot of money chasing that "big opportunity", esp. if s/he was lead on by an upline who's out to line his/her own pockets.

On the other hand, if you always look for "the next big thing" but dismissing each one as "not good enough" you are unlikely to find it either. That's "Analysis Paralysis"

The only true measure is study it with logic, then when you got all the evidence in, and confirmed that you have taken into account all of the biases and such, THEN you can decide on what to do: go, or no-go.

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