Online marketer Max Kalehoff cites intriguing research from the University of Iowa indicating that people who have only a little information about a product are happier with that product than people who have more information.

Says the UI researcher: "We found that once people commit to buying or consuming something, there’s a kind of wishful thinking that happens and they want to like what they’ve bought." More information, it seems, makes it harder to engage in wishful thinking!

We’re all familiar with the phenomenon … it’s called rationalization … an interesting term given that it’s motivated by a strong emotional need to be happy with the choice made. Even to the point of ignoring or distorting negative information. How we strongly we resist disappointing ourselves!

The UI folks call it the Blissful Ignorance Effect.

Does this mean you should avoid communicating with new donors?!

I think not. This same emotional need to feel justified with one’s choice probably explains why direct marketers find high success with very fast turn-arounds on up-sells and cross-sells.

Smart marketers, including fundraisers, move very quickly to assist new customers (and donors) in emotionally validating their first purchase/gift … with a second one!

What do you think? Is your first impulse to "educate" a new donor … or to ask them for another gift?


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