Tuesday, November 1, 2011
I've done this too many times. I'm a guitar player and drummer, so I have a ton of stuff I COULD buy anytime I go to the music store. Sometimes I just get an extra pair of sticks, just so I feel the trip was "worth" it. The worst thing is when I find a good "deal" on something I've been keeping my eye on. When I see a price that is just unbelievable, I immediately fall victim to the line of thinking "this is such a good price, I NEED to get it now." even if I really can't neccesarily afford it.
I also realize how brand loyal I am everytime I'm there. Now, in my own defense, there are a lot of reasons for musicians to be brand loyal. But, I take it very, very far. I won't even buy a different brand of guitar picks because I'm that picky, no pun intended, on what I use. Once I settle into something I know is comfortable, it's hard to change. That is about the only thing that saves me from all of my impulse buying, because if it isn't a brand I like, I won't touch it.
Monday, October 31, 2011
This summer my wife and I bought a 1983 Honda Shadow for $800. I knew when I bought it that it needed a "little" bit of work, but little did I know how much the "little" amount of work would cost me. When I bought it i knew that it had been sitting in the guy's garage for two years without being touched. I went to pick it up gave the man the money I have been paying for it ever since. Right off the bat it had to go into the shop to get the carburetor worked on. While it was in there the mechanic told me the tank was rusty and needed to be cleaned and resealed. It took about a month for them to get it back to me. After I got the motorcycle back, as I was riding it back to Anderson from Huntington the speedometer stopped working and it still didn't run right, it had trouble starting. So I went and bought a new battery because the one it had in it was about 5 years old and needed to be replaced. After I put the new battery in I realized that there was more wrong with it. The carburetor still needed worked on and I needed new ignition coils. Once I got those problems fixed, it still didn't want to start up very easily so I had to buy new CDI ignition boxes. I could only afford one though. The back tire went flat and the headlight stopped working, and the starter went out. Don't get me wrong, when it did run it ran well and it was very fun. It was just keeping it running that was the problem. Needless to say it was becoming a money pit. That was the majority of my summer. I was just trying to figure out how to keep my motorcycle running so my wife and I would have two vehicles (and we really liked it). Since I bought it, I have put around $2000 in to it not including what I paid for it. I have learned some things with this experience. First of all, I now know that when I get another motorcycle I will pay a little more and make sure that there is nothing wrong with it. Secondly make sure there is nothing wrong with it before you buy it. And Third, if anybody needs help getting a seat off of a 83 Shadow, I can now do that with my eyes closed. I have a bad case of buyers remorse.
The other day I was confronted with many people’s worst nightmare, no I’m not talking about an extremely large spider that happens to be on the wall next to you; but instead when for some reason you aren’t able to skip through commercials due to Comcast locking that feature for a particular show. I have always quickly skipped through or “zapped” through commercials to get back to that oh so ever drama filled weekly soap opera of mine but now I was forced to sit through the agonizing 3-5minutes of commercials. While the anxiety slowly built up for who killed Mrs. Jackson, a commercial suddenly came on that caught my attention and relieved me from the frantic hysteria of the show. The commercial that was playing was the Travelers Insurance commercial, where there was a dog that protects his dog house from the “cat burglar”. I thought it was an extremely clever and funny commercial but more importantly it made me curious about Travelers Insurance. The curiosity sparked from the commercial then put a thought in my mind. As an advertiser I would hate zapping and what it meant for consumers. If zapping were to be stopped advertisers would be able to reach their target market in a much more efficient manner than losing millions of dollars in advertisements that may never be seen by the majority of the public. In the end I personally think that the consumer could step away from that anxiety of their soap opera and take in the entertainment and hard work put on by the advertisement agencies. In the end one commercial that catches your attention may be a company and service that you decide to purchase and invest in. I can personally speak truth behind this for I am now a customer of Travelers Insurance.
This past summer I was introduced to a fantastic new way to eat an Oreo, cold. One day my roommate was setting watching TV and eating Oreo’s. Like many cookie lovers, I couldn’t turn it down when I was offered one. After taking a bite I knew there was something different, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. He informed me that he likes to store his Oreo’s in the refrigerator and eat them cold. I decided that I had to capitalize on this new found wonder and quickly went to the store and bought my own Oreo’s. It wasn’t long before package one was gone and it was back to the store for more. However, being a poor college student, I decided it was time to change it up a bit.
While standing at the grocery store I realized that there are many different brands of Oreo like cookies. For many of us the prototype for a cream filled chocolate cookie is Oreo, however, there are many different off brands on the shelf. Since I was at Payless grocery store, I decided to pick up their brand of cookie, Kiddos. (Buyers note: regular stuffed and double stuffed are almost always the same price. It doesn’t matter what brand. I still have yet to determine why this is, or furthermore, why anyone would buy only regular stuffed when you can get double for the same price.) After my purchase I returned to my apartment and placed the cookies in the fridge to chill. After a long day at work the next day I returned to my apartment and quickly grabbed a handful of cookies. After one bite I realized I had made a mistake. Cold Kiddos do not taste nearly as good as cold Oreo’s. Thinking it might just be my taste buds, I asked my roommate for confirmation. Sadly, the terrible fate of the not so good cold cookie was confirmed. Buyer’s remorse began to sink in as I wished I would have paid the extra dollar for the Oreo brand cookie. Eventually I finished the container of lackluster Kiddos and learned a valuable lesson; sometimes it’s better to pay just a bit more. (Writers note: I also took a chance on Wal-Mart brand Oreo like cookies. They get the approval of a good cold cookie.)
This weekend I lived the dream of every 8 year old girl in America; seeing Taylor Swift in concert. Myself and 16,000 other fans crowded into Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky for about 4 hours of pure enjoyment. Knowing I wanted to write this blog over the concert, one thing became evident to me throughout the night; anything that has to do with Taylor Swift has a higher perceived value.
Now for those of you who have never been to a Taylor Swift concert, people get into it. From the little girls in their Taylor Swift t-shirts, the mom's dressed like cowgirls for their daughters, to the all out super fans who paint their bodies, these concerts are quite the spectacle. All these things that people do are to gain the attention of Swift herself; because her approval makes all the effort worth it. And the perceived value of Swift's approval is worth more than all the time and effort that was put into the costume or poster they made.
The same can be said for the Swift merchandise stand. A regular pack of glowsticks costs about $2, but once you put Taylor Swift's name on them its worth $15. Or you can buy a 5 pack of t-shirts from Walmart for $10, but one shirt with a picture of Swift is worth double that. Within the past 3 weeks thousands of people have even gone out and bought Swift's new perfume, Wonderstruck. It's been proven time and time again; if you make it, they will buy it.
Point being, Taylor Swift is her own Brand, Product, and Empire. At this point they could make Taylor Swift paperclips and people would by them. Because the true "swifties" don't care what the product is, if it has to do with her it's worth it. To them, Taylor Swift products have a higher perceived value than everything else. So I guess the only difference between these 8 year olds and myself is that I actually know I am sucked into this whirlpool of Taylor Swiftness. But even so, I guess it just drags me headfirst, fearless.
A few weeks ago I began the near impossible task of searching for fall semester texbooks. When thinking about where to buy books, many places appeared in my evoked set: Amazon.com, The Bookstore, Chegg.com, Dealoz.com, and half.com. All of these places or sites are services I have used in the past. My prototype was absolutely Dealoz.com. I have this site saved on my computer and went investigating there first. After this, I compared Amazon and half.com prices to that of Dealoz. As I thought, my search only supported the fact that Dealoz would continue to be my prototype in the taxonomic category for “buying textbooks.” For that category specifically, the most important factors is price as well as shipping time and quality. After purchasing a few books, I realized there was one book I could only buy from the bookstore because it was specific to AU. The bookstore did play a crucial role in my decisions as it is part of my inept set. As long as I could find books for cheaper online, I would avoid the bookstore at all costs, so having to buy from that source was extremely annoying.
Once the books came in the mail and I began to use them in class, I quickly realized that I had buyers remorse for one book in particular. Upon opening it, I realized the seller had lied about the condition of the book and the professor had over exaggerated my need to use it in class and for work. I immediately was unsatisfied with my purchase and regretted buying it. This is called buyers remorse. I quickly contacted the company and arranged to return it. After returning the book, I reassessed if DealOz.com should still be my prototype and it still is. While it remains at the top of my mind, it did drop a little after one bad experience.
Recently I was watching television when a commercial for Arrid Deodorant came on. Normally I would tune right out or flip the channel since I never have used this product. It is definitely in my inept set when it comes to anti-persperants. Now when the commercial came on it was Mariano Rivera, a closer for the New York Yankees. I'm a huge baseball fan so naturally my attention returns to the ad. In the ad a narrator begins to give a quick bio on Mariano since he is not in his Yankee uniform, but instead a generic unmarked uniform and hat. The narrator explains how he is the all time saves leader in baseball which implies that he is in stressful situations where their product would work great. Here is where I struggled with the ad, as I stated earlier I do not consider Arrid deodorant to be name brand or top of the line, no offense to those who do. As a consumer I did not believe this ad for a second because of the person delivering the message. I was experiencing match-up hypothesis, which means for this ad I did not believe that the source of the message was appropriate for the product that was being advertised. Also, the commercial just seemed cheap and underfunded which I think helped contribute to my prior judgements about this product.
I had made up my mind that I was going to purchase an iphone about a week or so before the unveiling of the iphone 4S. Now it was between three choices between three different carriers. Once I started looking at the different data plan rates for each of the major carriers (Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon), I found out that I had an employee discount with two out of the three carriers. I had checked out the websites and AT&T was by far the best with giving me the information that I was searching for and Verizon ran themselves out of the picture because their website was way too confusing and overly busy for my taste.
Now my choice was down to Sprint and AT&T. Since I was still on my parents' plan with Sprint, I had no idea how much data I was actually using. So naturally, I thought paying 80 dollars for an unlimited plan was much better than paying 25 for 2 Gigabytes, and then they would charge you 10 more dollars per Gigabyte that was over your particular plan. I sucked it up, did my research, and realized that a 2 Gigabyte data plan with the basic 450 minutes plus rollover voice plan, as well as the unlimited messaging plan with AT&T, was going to be cheaper for me than something similar with Sprint.
Type of phone: check. Carrier: check. iphone: not sure which one yet. After narrowing it down to an iphone from AT&T, I still needed to decide which one I was going to purchase. I waited to see what Apple what going to release on October 7, and boy was I dissapointed. No iphone 5. That was a major bummer considering all the hype that was being created by the globe and by me. I get that Siri is cool, but when would I ever use that technology enough to earn my ROI? The 200 dollars for the phone did not help at all.
Ok. The new iphone 4S is eliminated. Do I want the 4 or the 3GS? I made my final decision based on two features: price and the shape of the phone. The 3GS was free versus 100 dollars for the iphone 4. The 3GS had a very similar shape to the itouch (1st and 2nd Generation) compared to the "squareness" of the iphone 4. I liked the earlier itouch because of how it felt in the palm of my hand. 3GS= 1 - iphone 4= 0. I would prefer to save 100 dollars on the phone and I remembered the problems with it when the 4 first came out.
I chose the iphone 3GS with AT&T and am paying about 100 dollars a month and I am happy with my decision. Absolutely zero buyer's remorse. I saw a problem (I needed a new phone). I searched for information (online). I made judgements. I made decisions. I made a post-decision evaluation (pure bliss). I had just completed the 5-Step Decision-Making Process.
During the course of my first three years at Anderson University I would always find myself unprepared for a rainy forecast. I have never really owned a legitimate rain coat and have always found myself without an umbrella. This previous summer on a drizzling afternoon I stumbled upon the Moosejaw outdoor gear website and decided it was time for me to purchase a rain coat that would keep me dry during my long journeys to class from my off campus home. When comparing rain coats there were a lot more factors that came into effect other than price, brand familiarity, performance and color during my decision process. My overall mood was a key factor because during the time of my online purchase it was raining outside and felt the need to get a rain coat that would keep me warm and dry. Another contributing factor was my prior brand elevation. When comparing similar brands such as Moosejaw, North Face and Patagonia having prior knowledge or opinions from friends and reading reviews helps the selection process immensely. Having prior knowledge to a certain brand can also generate a negative bias and give more weight to the negative information. After getting past the psychological components of making a purchase I decided to invest in a lime green Patagonia goretex raincoat to keep me dry during my journeys to class every so often.
Sunday, October 30, 2011
A few weeks ago my tennis shoes gave out. Completely. Sole ripped clear off the heal. I thus experienced problem recognition. I began to search for some options at Dick’s sporting goods. There were many shoes that were appealing on display, so in retrospect I began utilizing the conjunctive model of decision making. My first attribute that I utilized to eliminate options was style. If I liked the way the shoes looked I kept them as an option. I narrowed my options down to three pairs of shoes. Two were Nike, one mostly black accented in light blue. The other mostly black accented in pink. The other was a pair of new balance that were pink, white and black. I moved to price, however they were all comparable in price, within ten dollars of each other. I then moved to brand. I first went to my prototype which is NIKE shoes. Nike shoes for me represent a schema of attributes including high quality, comfortable, and stylish. My experience with Nike has been mostly positive and I have never owned a pair of new balance sneakers. Because of this I eliminated the pair of new balance shoes, leaving me with light blue and pink NIKE. Between the two I went back to style. Which appealed to me most? I ended up purchasing the pink pair which were a bit more expensive however, more appealing to me. I love my choice so far and have not experienced any buyer’s remorse.
I often find myself wasting too much time on nonsense when I could be doing far more productive things. One of the activities I find myself throwing away time at is red box movies. The fact that they are so accessible and cheap is just overpowering. For 1 dollar I can lay around for two hours and be semi-entertained. The other night I found myself watching scott pilgrim vs. the world. I had no real burning desire to see this movie and I could have been studying or doing homework, but I fell into the "red box trap" non the less. It was an absolute horrible movie and I knowingly wasted my time watching. I feel that too often this is the case with my time management. I knowingly throw away hours at a time on silly movies just simply because I can. It is just so easy to go down the street and grab a movie for a dollar and waste my time away watching it when I know I could be doing better things.
So it all started about 2 months ago when my dad called me to tell me about a motorcycle at a house he is selling. I grew up racing dirt bikes and have wanted to buy a motorcycle for a long time, but I have just never had the extra money to buy one. Anyway, my dad tells me about a 1982 Honda Goldwing, you know the huge motorcycle with the windshield, you see old men going down the intestate on. The people were selling it for $1,500, well I do not really have that money just laying around, but my dad tells me to come check it out anyway. So I go check it out and they tell me that they want 1,500 for it but if I want it they would sell it to me for $1,000. But there was a catch; they had two different people say that they would come by after work to buy the motorcycle for 1,500. Well at the time I did not know a whole lot of information on Goldwings. I definitely had a time restraint; I did not have much time to make a decision. I did know that these bikes go for quite a bit more than $1,000 so I justified in my head that I could buy it and just flip it.
Let’s take a moment and go through my decision making process. First, need recognition, there is no way I can justify a need for a motorcycle but I had wanted one for so long that it became something I needed! Second, information search, I have done lots of research on motorcycles and have rode many different bikes. Third, evaluation of alternatives, I had not given much thought to alternative because at the time of the situation I was not in the market for a bike so my two options were spend the money and get a bike that I did not really want or go home with no bike and keep my money. Fourth, the purchase, well I made the purchase. I bought the motorcycle! Fifth, post-purchase evaluation, this was my number one concern throughout the process. Would I have buyer’s remorse? Nope! I did not, I loved it, I was becoming attached.
I did however decide I was going to sell it because I knew I could sell it for more and it was not the bike I wanted. About a week later I was going through craigslist where I stumbled across an ad where a person wanted to sell or trade his 1972 Honda CB750 Four. He said he wanted $4,000 or trade for a Goldwing. I said, “What the heck, why not!?” I went ahead and sent him an email telling him all about the motorcycle. He gave me a call and we decided to meet up. I was excited; this is the actual motorcycle I have always wanted! So we met up in Nashville Indiana and his motorcycle was in great condition. Well he decided he wanted to trade! So we traded and I got the bike I have always wanted for much cheaper than I would have ever been able to get. I have had it now for about a month, I have cleaned it up, lowered it, put a straight bar on it and a 4 into 1 exhaust. That may mean nothing to you but I love it! :)