Easy money

Q: How do you get people to pay more?

A: Don’t make them pay.

People and rivers both follow the path of least resistance. What is easy? That’s what people do.

But not junk food, binge-watching, and immediate gratification easy. It’s easy subject to our last choice. Switching jobs isn’t easy, but it is easy to show up at one. Ease has two challenges: the initial change and each small choice.

Jobs To Be Done addresses the first challenge. People change when the discomfort of the present and appeal of the new is greater than the anxieties of switching and habits of the present. JTBD interviews is the focus on the moment things flip. Free hotel breakfasts and donation alchemy are examples.

But I think it’s very interesting when you just think about what can be expensed on a corporate card and how that differs in terms of the pricing power that a business might have. And to me, if you can find a customer that’s going to be able to use their corporate card and you can give them a reason to use their corporate card, they are going to be much less likely to churn, willing to pay for more expenses because it’s always easier to use other people’s money than it is to use your money.

I think much of Manhattan between restaurants and sports teams is propped up on the corporate card dynamic there and a little different demand curve in terms of how that looks from a pricing perspective. So that is certainly the case here and what you have going on, and they’ve used it to their advantage historically.

Matt Reustle, Business Breakdowns

An HBR article’s contents aren’t clear, Matt remarked, there are no stars or reviews. It’s just the title and date. That’s the fear of the new – is this going to be good? But it’s Harvard, and the person buying isn’t the person paying. That’s great! That’s easy!

The challenge of ongoing action, is solved by design, crafting the path of least resistance. Want more vaccines? Schedule their application at each checkup. Want to eat less? Make it hard, or easy!, to count calories Want people to buy your Peloton? Don’t make them pay – let their future selves.

Organizations have many levers to pull to create behavioral change. Which ones are best depends on the context. For Harvard Business Review it’s branding and differentiating between the consumer and the customer.

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