Study: Saying your brand is ‘the best’ isn’t the best marketing strategy

Researchers at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management say the ‘maximizing mindset’ leads to disappointment.


Is the product that you represent the absolute best in its category? If so, you may want to keep that news to yourself.

A new study from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management shows that if you call your product “the best” it actually decreases its chance for success—something they’re calling the “maximizing mindset.”

“If you’re in this maximizing mindset, no matter how good the product is, [consumers are] going to be unsatisfied with it if it’s anything less than the most amazing thing ever,” Neal J. Roese, a professor of marketing at the Kellogg School of Management and co-author of the study told BusinessNewsDaily. “It’s a hidden danger that marketers need to be aware of.”

The study points to Red Bull, which never compares itself to competitors or claims that it’s the best. “By sidestepping such superlatives,” Fox Business writes, “the researchers found, Red Bull pushes consumers outside of the maximizing mindset and decreases dissatisfaction with the product.”

In the study, the maximizing mindset caused consumers to feel regret or disappointment if the product didn’t live up to their expectations.

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Topics: PR

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