Should we educate or engage the consumer? Last year I wrote a post called Educating the consumer because it is a phrase so often used in agricultural circles. I have been revisiting my thoughts at the time and also a post I wrote a few weeks ago – consumers don’t like being told what to eat. The phrase “educate the consumer” presupposes that the person doing the providing/selling knows best. Does a paternalistic approach actually engage the consumer ... “Buy this because we say so...” I don’t think it does – so how do we engage the consumer to purchase what we are selling?
Anita Roddick once said that “Consumers have not been told effectively enough that they have huge power and that purchasing and shopping involve a moral choice”. How do we “tell” without lecturing, inform without “educating” and engage without browbeating? I think it is all about the language and the tone and communicating that purchasing decisions are often made within a moral framework.
I think we are back to the price versus value debate.