That’s funny, Jova … after I wrote my post, I searched my thoughts for a product or brand that I “support” based on its reputation and the media and such – but haven’t actually used; and believe it or not, the Tesla Model S was exactly what came to mind!
I asked my question of @rolnlow because I like to study and understand consumer behavior.
Marketers face an important challenge: They need to make a product extremely attractive to consumers, but if they set expectations too high, then that increases the chance of disappointed customers. It is a balancing act; but the bias is on the over-promise side of the equation.
In other words, marketing materials and PR of any sort are likely to be unreliable; regardless, it also true that consumers are inherently optimistic about their purchases, especially of new gadgets. Unless someone is buying a particular brand, product or model specifically because it is much “cheaper” than other choices and known to have compromises, a consumer doesn’t make a purchase if they expect any significant level of disappointment. Usually it is the opposite – consumers expect to be impressed with the speed and features of their new phone, the incredible picture of their new TV, the sweet smooth ride of their new Tesla… and the simple “magic” of their new SmartThings smart home…
But “buyer beware” (caveat emptor) is hardly a new concept. Depending on the cost and/or importance of the purchase, many folks spend hours researching and comparing choices. In the case of SmartThings, the gadget media (nor Consumer Reports) hasn’t been a source of good information because this industry is new, there are few competitors, and, frankly, the gadget media itself leans towards optimism and like showing off the shiny side of new technology rather than look for its current weaknesses or admit that stuff isn’t quite ready for prime time yet. Heck – the worst transgression over the past few years is for the gadget media to do “reviews” of Kickstarter and IndieGogo listed items that don’t even exist yet except in skeletal vaporware form.
###Lower expectations = eventually happier customer.
I totally agree that SmartThings’s marketing machine sets too high expectations; and the media has been complicit. The existence of this open community forum, however, provides a great source of research. It’s web address should be printed in large type on every advertisement, sales website, and box.