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Friday, December 7, 2012

Chose: remind people of money and dominate them, or other values and have their hand of friendship.


Money, if you ask an economist, is a medium of exchange. Without money, you’d get to eat only what you plant in your backyard. When a lady friend told me how many yams she had harvested from her small farm, I failed short of telling her that without money, she would be confined to roasting the yam on a charcoal fire and eating it without salt and oil.

Indeed, money is central to our lives. It is our measure of wealth. Not only that, it is also a factor for measuring personal performance, interpersonal relations and helping behavior. Money will continue to be like that.

Title Picture
Cash Money Milliionaire! Credit: Flickr.com, Dust Mason.
Have you noticed that people want to live their lives, not thinking about or being reminded of money? If you want to sell yourself, or sell a product, make sure that you or your product possess the quality and quantity that is requisite before you start reminding them of money. They will rebel against you if you do so. Really, people dislike being reminded of money. It makes them think of you as an authority and the likelihood that they might lose their freedom. The concept that rich people should help poor people has not stood on its feet. If you or your product does not possess the qualities that can make it stand on its own, is not an authority in that area, then remind them of other social values. Otherwise, if the reverse if the case, if you ask them to perform tasks for you, they will follow your suggestions to the letter but will keep a distance when it comes to interpersonal relationships. Also, when you need help, it might be slow in coming.

In a series of studies, the authors found that reminders of money caused consumers to think more abstractly and focus on the primary features of a product instead of its secondary features. Also, they are more likely to evaluate a new product based on its brand name instead of its individual features. The authors found that reminders of money can also influence consumer’s decision making.

Why lemons do not remind people of money.

The reason for the above is that money is symbolic. It is linked to social resources such as security, status, power, confidence and freedom. People with lots of money and who flaunt it around usually send signals of confidence and strength and have better ability of exerting their influence on others. But money also has been used to dominate others.

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Another research found that reminding people of money makes them think of their freedom. Therefore, it has the ability to affect interpersonal communication, advertising and marketing. Therefore, people tend to rebel against someone who, whenever a conversation comes up, always reminds people of money. They feel insecure, weak and insignificant. So, don’t be surprised if you do not sell on the personal front or your products do not sell well because you keep reminding them of money.

Due to the symbolic nature of money, many are ready to marry for the sake of money. They are not marrying for love but for security, for the sake of acquiring societal status. Sometimes, against conventional wisdom.
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Sometimes at the risk of their personal happiness. When you remind them of money, they remember the sacrifice they made against other social values and would treat you badly if you are not a peer in monetary terms. That is the power of money. Money can inspire for good or bad.

So, when next you want to use money and reminders of your wealth as a sort of defense, think of what you would lose: your friends, social contacts and true love and affection from people, and weigh these against what you are likely to gain: power over people’s lives, the ability to make them do what you want.

Chose! Which is more worth it? Do choose wisely.

(Related Post: Forming blind trust for a pretty face might be influenced by gestures and nonverbal cues .)


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