Higher price, better value ?

If a cloth seller shows you two types of clothes, expensive and cheaper one, you will definitely consider the expensive one more qualitative because it costs higher. Something exactly like that I observed when I went with my mother to buy some clothes a few weeks back. The seller was showing three kinds of dresses varying in price and the quality of cloth. They priced as 10 $ for the cheap quality dress, 20 $ for the standard quality dress and 35 $ for the one with the best quality. I’m not a cloth expert, however, but I just touched the three of them and the first one and last exactly gave the same feel. I speedily phrased my experience to mom that the dresses are seeming made of the same kind of cloth. But mom said, “No, there’s a great difference. This is of only 10 $ and that one is of 35 $. It’s much better” pointing towards the dressers. The seller addressed the same thing to convince the buyer obviously and he succeeded in his attempts.


It is called the marketing placebo effect. Plenty of researches showed that the people consider the expensive things better, although they are made up of the same stuff used for the low priced things. A notable experiment to prove this is showed in a popular NatGeo show ‘Brain games’. They involved a number of volunteers and asked them to choose a better quality cake from two types of cakes with the prices 15 $ and 55 $. Almost everyone of them considered the expensive one tastier, moist, and delicious and the cheaper one left a dry taste in their mouths. But here’s a twist. Both of the cakes were made with the same ingredients in the same oven and at exactly the same time. So, what kind of psychology is behind this?

Physically, the medial prefrontal cortex and the ventral striatum are the two counterparts of the brain which are responsible for this deception, because these parts become most active while you take a decision towards anything based on its price. Psychologically, these two areas calculate the rewards by the expectations towards anything and change your perception, according to a brain imaging study conducted by using MRI scanners on the volunteers during a wine experiment of the same scenario.

The higher price is automatically linked to the better value by our brain when we see two different prices. It is designed in a way that it falls for the trick. The experiments and researches show that how important is our perception and also how it is changed by the simple tricks of numbers. The deception is not only limited to the price values. It has a wide number of applications.

Suppose you have to buy a tee shirt. There are two tees in front of you. One is from a popular brand ‘Nike’ and its logo embedded on it. The other one is a plane and simple t-shirt without any brand logo or name. Which one would you choose and consider a better quality?………. Look, there are no prices included, but deception is still the same. You will choose the branded one because you think it’s original, it’s more comfortable, it’s made of rich fabrics etc.etc. Why??……… Because it’s made by Nike, a brand. But like the other experiments, the t-shirts are exactly made of the same cloth, from the same fabrics, and by the same weaving machines. In this case, instead of price, the standard and reputation matter to you. You already scaled Nike as a big and quality brand that’s why you think their products are also of brilliant quality. Generally speaking, you’re not gonna cut a shred from the t-shirt and testify under a microscope to know whether it’s original or not. So you simply believe your brain and buy the Nike tee. 😉

And yeah, it’s called ‘Branding’.😝🤣🤣……….

The marketing placebo effect is just similar to the medical placebo effect in which you are given a sugar tablet which is expressed as a medicine to cure acrophobia and shown you a deceptive animation video clip to illustrate you that how it works. And after a few days, eventually, you get rid of the disorder, acrophobia in this specific case.

Deceptions are all around in your life. Whatever you see, is not true that will always be right. Seeing is sometimes can be deceiving. The standards you set of any particular brand in your mind, might be not more than a deceit. So be conscious next time, when buying something branded from any expensive store. You will realize the trick! 😉

Thanks for reading!

B. M.


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