Perceived Value

Value, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder – De gustibus non est disputandum [1].

In the field of smartphones this is played out very well in the iPhone vs. Android wars where one side will stick, sometimes fanatically, to the superiority of its platform over the other. (Note: the overwhelming majority of people have no great interest in this debate. They have whichever phone they do have for whatever reasons they have, and merely want to use it for the tasks they see important.)

In product sales, however, this is tantamount. People complained about the price of the original iPod, then again at the release of the iPhone, but consumers bought them up in ever increasing numbers because each perceived value in the purchase.

Without this, no purchase is ever made. If a person des not believe, at the moment of purchase, that a product will provide some value, then he or she will not buy it.

Additionally, there is no import as to what any real value there may or may not be. For a sale to occur there must be a perceived value in the product.

We have all bought things that did not live up to expectations – real value did not match initial perceived value. Occasionally, we are pleasantly surprised, and usually delighted, to find that a product or service exceeds expectations. Still, in both cases, the original purchase was based on initial perceived value. This is what matters.

Comments appreciated.

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[1] De gustibus non est disputandum is a Latin maxim meaning “In matters of taste, there can be no disputes” (literally “about tastes, it must not be disputed/discussed”). The implication is that everyone’s personal preferences are merely subjective opinions that cannot be right or wrong, so they should never be argued about as if they were [objective]. – Wikipedia

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