This business fail taught me about psychological switching costs

psychological switching costs

One of the most overlooked marketing obstacles when launching a new product is psychological switching costs. And today I have a personal story about condoms to demonstrate this important idea.

Often, our market research may show a compelling customer need but after a launch, the concept falls flat because of an intangible psychological burden consumers face when trying something unfamiliar.

This can be one of the most frustrating business challenges because we might not know the full extent of psychological switching costs until we actually get a product out into the market. The time and research to uncover this problem early on can be prohibitive.

Understanding psychological switching costs

Psychological switching costs show up like this: A customer recognizes the advantages of a product and tells you they would buy it, but then actually does not buy it due to a subtle psychological barrier they probably couldn’t verbalize.

Early in my career, I learned the painful lessons of psychological switching costs from condoms. Yes, condoms. This is probably the first and last time I will cover that product in a blog post so here I am, always penetrating new boundaries.

I thought it would be more effective if you actually HEARD me tell the story, visualize the product challenge, and discover why I had this failure to launch … so I made this little video for you. I’ve been trying to make more little video lessons like this so if you like it, please subscribe to my YouTube channel.

Here we go:

If for some reason you can’t see this video, you can watch it directly here on YouTube.

Keynote speaker Mark SchaeferMark Schaefer is the executive director of Schaefer Marketing Solutions. He is the author of some of the world’s bestselling digital marketing books and is an acclaimed keynote speaker, college educator, and business consultant.  The Marketing Companion podcast is among the top business podcasts in the world. Contact Mark to have him speak to your company event or conference soon.

Follow Mark on TwitterLinkedInYouTube, and Instagram.

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