Monday, December 20, 2010

Luxury Goods & The Irrational Brain - Research

According to a study by Henrik Hagtvedt of Boston College and Vanessa Patrick of the University of Houston to be published in the Journal of Marketing Research, customers who purchase luxury items that don't blend in with either their wardrobe or their home tend not to return these products. Instead, they buy more - usually cheaper - products to complement their new acquisitions. The cost more often than not exceeds that of the original purchase, creating a vicious cycle of consumption.

Over three years, the 125 participants' spending habits for shoes, necklaces and furniture were tracked. Participants were given high-end products from either “designer” labels or from luxury retailers that frequently clashed with their aesthetic tastes. After a period of time, subjects were offered the chance to return the products in exchange for money or to keep the product obtained through the study.

The vast majority of participants opted to keep the luxury goods instead of returning them - and also admitted to buying a host of cheaper items to complement their luxury product.

Via - FastCompany