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How a New Study Can Help You “Touch Up” Your Marketing 

Hi, Richard Seppala, the ROI Guy™ here.  According to a new study about to be published in “The Journal of Consumer Research,” shoppers who actually touch products while they’re shopping are more likely to pay a higher price for them.


It has to do with something the experts call “the endowment effect.”  When you own something, you attach more value to it.  And touching something causes you to have more of a sense of ownership to the item. 

Suzanne Shu, a UCLA marketing professor who co-authored the study, says “When you touch something, you instantly feel more of a connection to it.  That connection stirs up an emotional reaction — ‘Yeah, I like the feel of it. This can be mine.’ And that emotion can cause you to buy something you never would have bought if you hadn’t touched it.”

How did they prove this was the case?  Well, they put a Slinky and a coffee mug in front of 231 undergrads at the University of Wisconsin.  Around half were told they could touch the products – the other half were told, “Hands off!” 

Afterwards they were asked how much they would spend to buy each product.  The results were clear – the students who were allowed to touch said they’d spend more for each item. 

Now, most of you probably don’t own a retail store, so you’re wondering – what does this have to do your business?  Or your marketing ROI?

Well, let’s go back to the original study – because they added another layer to it.  The undergrads who weren’t allowed to pick up the items were then asked to imagine picking them up.  Same result as the actual touching – the valuation of the product went up for those students.

This means that whatever product or service you’re selling, if you can make your potential customer feel the benefit with your marketing and advertising, you’ll probably increase your ROI with that campaign.

Say you’re a chiropractor trying to increase business?  Have your marketing reflect the relief your prospect might feel from your treatment.  Now, if you’re a dentist, you might think a prospective patient might not want to “feel” your treatment vicariously.  Then you concentrate on how that patient would feel with whiter teeth or new dental implants.

It all goes back to being benefit-oriented – don’t make your advertising all about you, make it all about a positive effect on your prospects.  And continue that kind of targeted marketing through auto-responders and recorded messages set up to answer calls from  generated leads.

The more you make your potential customers “feel” what they’ll get out of your product or service, the more of a connection you make with them.  And that’s what helps boost your ROI.

For more tips and tricks on how to improve and increase your marketing ROI, visit me at  http://yourroiguy.com. 

Let me finish by practicing what I’m preaching here…imagine you’re touching more money in your business bank account thanks to increased ROI…


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