Lazy Brainz

Category: By Christian
First off, we made it to Portland. We were an hour late, but I think most of the flights around the country were in the same boat. With Denver's airport being shutdown everyone was in a scramble to get planes, pilots and passengers to the right areas. I feel really bad for people who were supposed to fly through Denver on Wed or Thursday, because the soonest they can travel is Friday or Saturday. That would be utterly frustrating.

On to the main topic for today...Our Lazy Brainz. I was listening to an interview with a famous marketing advisor named Jay Conrad Levinson the other day on the radio. He said a lot of interesting things, but one that stuck with me is that "90% of purchases are made spontaneously. The key to getting to customers is repetition."

The concept makes sense. So much of what we do, we do on autopilot. As I discussed the other day, we rarely put a lot of mental effort into our conversations. Entertainment options are becoming less and less intellectually strenuous. Even living is made simple as our brain tells our body when to breathe, blink, swallow, etc. There is so much going on in us and around us that our brains create shortcuts to help us be more efficient in everything we do. It's so sweet that God made our brains in a way that allows us to live life to the full. However, this trait can also be taken advantage of. When people can make money off of this neurological phenomena though, we have to watch our backs.

I have learned over the years that advertisers are smart. There are hundreds of billions of consumer dollars out there to be won in the high stakes game of sales, so they don't pull any punches. They know our strengths. They know our weaknesses. They exploit us and we typically don't even know it.

I was thinking about this the other day in relation to our parental stance on Elli watching television. We don't want her to be a couch potato so we'll probably have some time limits on how much our kids watch tv. Based on content alone, there are a lot of things out there that we don't want her to be exposed to. But even the most innocent shows are financed by advertisers who are intent on manipulating kids into thinking that they "need" whatever product they are selling, because people spend tons of money on their kids. Not only that, but it's easy to get over on kids. If you can endear their heart to your product at an early age, they will be quite likely to be a loyal customer over the course of their life. Go ahead. Pimp my kid. At least she'll be entertained.

Are we throwing out the tv when we get home? Probably not. But the lesson for me is that not only do I need to spend a little more effort thinking through how I spend my money and why I chose to spend it the way I do, but I also need to train my kids to do the same. If advertisers are going to bring the big guns, we have to be prepared to blast back.

Fair Dinkum

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