snob effect

snob effect
The desire to purchase something only because it is extremely expensive or extremely rare; the tendency for demand to increase along with the price of an item whenever that item is perceived to improve the social status of the consumer.
Example Citation:
Custom-tailored products that cannot be mass-produced and things that are supposed to be hard to buy, such as Ferraris, can't be promoted by bandwagon effects. Such presumptive rarities flourish with snob effects, the phenomenon that a thing becomes more desirable because fewer people can afford it or can find one.
— Andrew Allentuck, "Jumping on the bandwagon," eBusiness Journal, May, 2000
Earliest Citation:
Counterfeiting intended to mislead consumers is always bad, Shapiro concedes. But there are other cases in which there is no intent to deceive: "If you buy a 'Rolex' watch for $ 25, you know it's not a real Rolex watch." The welfare of those consumers who enjoy wearing the famous name is increased, while the only injury is to owners of genuine Rolexes, whose benefit from the "snob effect" is reduced.
— Marc Levinson, "The free-market way to protect consumers," Dun's Business Month, June, 1986
While investigating the related phrase bandwagon effect (the desire to purchase something only because many other people have purchased it), I came across the following, which seems to imply that both phrases were coined back in 1950:
Leibenstein (1950) added two additional emulatory societal effects — the bandwagon effect (people buy what is widely being bought) and the snob effect (people buy what is not being widely bought).
— R Keith Schwer, Rennae Daneshvary, "Symbolic product attributes and emulatory consumption," Journal of Applied Business Research, Summer 1995
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  • Snob effect — The snob effect refers to the desire to own exclusive or unique goods. These goods usually have a high economic value, but low practical value. The less of an item available, the higher its snob value. Examples of such items with general snob… …   Wikipedia

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  • house money effect — n. The premise that people are more willing to take risks with money they obtained easily or unexpectedly. Example Citations: The Flemings lot are now talking about regret aversion, investors inclination to sell their winners and stick by their… …   New words

  • poverty effect — n. A reduction in consumer spending based on a perception of relative poverty caused by the decreasing value of stock market portfolios. Example Citation: Some economists are already talking about a poverty effect caused by sinking stock prices.… …   New words

  • watercooler effect — n. The effect created by two or more employees having an informal, face to face conversation, as though at a watercooler. Example Citation: There also was the watercooler effect, or the theory that people come up with their best ideas when… …   New words

  • wealth effect — (WELTH uh.fekt; TH as in thin) n. An increase in consumer spending based on the perceived wealth created by the escalating value of stock market portfolios. Example Citation: Big portfolio gains by investors in recent years have created what… …   New words

  • last name effect — n. The closer a person s childhood surname is to the end of the alphabet, the faster that person tends to make purchase decisions. Example Citations: The last name effect is a continuum, researchers found. So a Rodriguez will buy quicker than a… …   New words

  • lipstick effect — n. During a recession, the tendency for consumers to purchase small, comforting items such as lipstick rather than large luxury items. Example Citation: If you ve been following domestic news in recent weeks, you ve probably heard about the… …   New words

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