I haven’t made an ‘impulse buy’ in an age, but when I saw my favorite line of cheddar cheese recently added an ‘aged reserve’ offering, I had to break down and make the purchase.
Sample the Unknown
The cheese is two ounces less than their normal variety… and nearly a dollar more. Somehow, it also seems much ‘thinner,’ most likely because it was packed into a different mold. The taste is not all that different, to be honest. But as I near the end of my first package, I am seriously contemplating buying another one at the store this weekend.
What’s in a Name?
I have to wonder, though, how words like ‘aged’ and ‘reserve’ prompt ideas of the product being somehow ‘better’ than others with very similar (and in some cases nearly exact!) qualities. Without a doubt, were the label marked ‘old’ or ‘stuff we haven’t been able to sell for a while,’ I would not give it a second look. But the fact that I am now ‘hooked’ is intriguing.
I do enjoy a fine cigar from time to time, but am never swayed by claims of ‘vintage,’ ‘reserve’ or any other sales pitch-style word they use to convince me to buy more smokes. So why this new-found fascination?
Get ‘Em While They Last
People like the thought of being able to partake in something that is not always readily available. This isn’t to suggest an air of elitism, but rather that there is something special about products that stray from the ‘norm.’
For instance, Cadbury Crème Eggs are produced every single day of the year. The earliest signs of them (typically in late February) are actually left-over candy from last year. I challenge you to locate one on the afternoon of Easter Sunday. Shortly after church services, they all ‘magically’ disappear!
So why not just sell the eggs all year ‘round, or clear out the inventory with a massive mark-down on Easter Monday (Canada)? It’s more than a money thing; it’s an issue of perception.
Different is Better
While I’m surprised at my recent obsession with this particular brand of aged cheddar, I am certainly not in the minority in this venture. Instead, I may have finally joined the masses that enjoy the ‘finer things in life,’ even if they know those things aren’t a whole lot different than the ‘everyday standard.’
by Major Santiago
Food & Dining
Residential Life Magazine