Why do you buy things?

I read a lot of stuff about why people make buying decisions. Some of it is very scientific and some of it is anecdotal. Much of it can be downright confusing since it may be product or service specific. So back in July I commissioned a poll on LinkedIn to see if I could get some answers to help my business.  If you click on the “see results” link in the graphic below, you will see the responses I received.

The meager number of responses means this poll isn’t very statistically valid on a broad basis. In fact only 18 responses out of my almost 1,000 (at the time) connections shows what I’d consider a pretty fair level of apathy amongst my connections. Or maybe they just didn’t see the poll among the mountains of information we are all bombarded with daily. Or maybe they just didn’t want to give me their information. Maybe I should do a poll on why they didn’t answer my poll!

I found the results really interesting in light of all the press coverage about how pessimistic small businesses in particular seem to be about their future prospects. I was expecting to see a much higher number of “avoiding a painful experience” votes than the single one that was recorded. The other answers pretty much fit the majority of market research data that I’ve read over the years and could tend to point out that there is more innate optimism among the eighteen LinkedIn contacts who responded to my poll.

It is clear that the messages that will resonate with prospective buyers of products or services still fall into the three main categories of get, save and solve. If your marketing messages don’t fall into one of these three categories, your marketing strategies may not be as effective as they could be. Have you taken a look lately to make sure that subtle messaging shifts haven’t crept into what you are saying to your prospects? It’s often worth a look.

How does your opinion match up with the results of the poll that I received?  Or my interpretation of the results? I’m really interested to know what you think and would welcome your comments. Thanks for reading.

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