Work | 13.12.2017

Making Good, Bad Decisions

Last week, our strategy side hustle, the Bad Decisions podcast, cracked it’s first 1,000 downloads.

While not quite at ‘Serial’ levels just yet, it’s an encouraging sign that marketers the world over (including listeners in Denmark, Israel, Poland and Japan) are enjoying Mel and Dan’s take on the invisible forces that guide our choices.

If you’re new to the show, each 15-20 minute episode sees our Strategy Director, Dan Monheit and his Psychologist partner in crime, Dr Mel Weinberg, dive in to one of the many psychological heuristics that causes us to consistently make “sub-optimal” (read: bad) decisions.

Mel breaks down the theory, drawing on academia, research and neuroscience, whilst Dan looks at how we can use these mental quirks to better market products and services.

To be an 'early adopter' and join the bandwagon, here are the links for iTunes and Android. If you’re looking for a quick hit, below is a recap of what went down in the first six episodes:

Availability Bias - Why we massively overestimate our chances of success

Of all the mental tasks we suck at performing, estimating the likelihood of something really good or really bad happening is right up there. In this episode, Mel and Dan unpack the ingredients that lead to our terrible mental calculations and discuss how we can reconfigure them to create more compelling ads.

Choice Paradox - Why it’s so hard to choose a hamburger

We all want more choices, right? Well, no. Not according to the data anyway. In this episode, Mel and Dan look at how choice can adversely affect our ability to make decisions, as well as what good marketers can do to tip things in their favour.

Endowment Effect - Why we always sit in the same damn seat

Cars, homes, pens, mugs - it doesn’t matter what it is - if it’s ours, chances are we'll think it's more valuable than it really is. In this episode, Mel and Dan look at why we're always going to be disappointed when we sell something second hand, and how marketers can make their products irrationally valuable in the eyes of consumers.

Social Proof - Why we knowingly make stupid choices with our friends

If all of our friends jumped off a cliff, chances are we would too. Same goes if that cliff is a new restaurant, movie or fashion label. In this episode, Mel and Dan look at how our innate desire for social connection can be a marketer’s best friend.

Confirmation Bias - Why black Jeeps are everywhere

Turns out we really love being right. So much so that our brains systematically ignore things that don’t fit with what we already believe to be true. In this episode, Mel and Dan look at how marketers can make the most of what customers already believe.

Anchoring - Why we spend too much on BBQs

When we’re trying to determine the value of something, we tend to place far too much reliance on the first piece of information we stumble across. In this episode, Mel and Dan look at ways that pricing strategies influence our judgement, and how game shows make us feel like losers when we’re actually winning.

Article details Author: Tom Webster
Partnerships Manager
Published: 13.12.2017

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