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Helping customers justify their decision to others

 

In a recent article I wrote about research into self-justification which found consumers are much more likely to avoid unpleasant or confronting information (like calories on a menu) if they are given “cover”.

In other words, they’ll skip the café with calories on the menu if they can hang their decision on an unrelated reason, like the reviews that café received for its service.

We’re masters at finding reasons to justify to ourselves what we want to do....

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How customers justify avoiding you

People avoid information more when they are given a reason to let themselves off the hook.

That’s the key takeaway from some fresh research from Woolley and Risen (2021) called “Hiding from the truth: When and How Cover Enables Information Avoidance”.

There are key implications from both a business and personal perspective resulting from this finding.

Let’s talk business first.

How you talk to a customer about product features is either going to help them justify their...

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