The 'familiar' inhibitor

There's something about the way our living room looks, these days. Its never looked this way before. And the reason's a li'l boy at work. Jaden.

One of Jaden's mission in his li'l boy life is to ensure there's a different pattern to our living room everyday. And I get to see it every time I return from work. Tell you what, the first few days, it almost drove me crazy. Now, I look forward to it (read, have adapted to it). My former reluctance to come to terms with the changed pattern can be attributed to my desire for a certain living room 'order'. It had to be the way I liked it. And the way I liked it was different from the way Jaden saw it, and did it. Hence the initial angst. For me to come to terms with the new order, it required that I step out of my 'familiar order' and align to a new one. And that's exactly what I did, albeit after a while.

Order is what we seek. And we seek it the way we are comfortable with it. Stepping out of that desired order isn't easy as it threatens our sense of familiarity and stability. Even the thought is a fearful one. Consumers too, bring an order to consumption in their lives. At least to those purchases that are frequent, and are for everyday items. New brands and stores in the market may find it difficult to get the consumer to break his 'order' and 'try' them. At such times, the only way to go is to first present the consumer with what's new, and then give him an irresistible reason to try what's new on offer. A promo perhaps. Maybe great packaging. Or better atmospherics that usual. And soon you may have a few consumers straying form their familiar order to try you. That's when a smart marketer can score, with the new.

For me, getting used to Jaden's design of a living room required that I step out of what was familiar, in my head. In contrast, for the consumer that act will almost never happen out of personal choice. Instead it will only go through if the marketer present him with a compelling new act. One he can't refuse.


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