Friday, June 22, 2012

If It's Free, Is It Worth It?

Let's start this week with a question for your table right off the bat:

Why does the word "free!" sell?

Haven't we figured out yet that there's no such thing as a free lunch?

Below is a link to an article about value and cost in Jewish education. It includes a provocative speech by Dr. David Bryfman which I encourage you to watch.

In the video, he quotes author Dan Ariely:

"Free! gives us an emotional charge that we perceive what is being offered as immensely more valuable than it really is. Why? I think it's because humans are intrinsically afriaid of loss. The real allure of FREE! is tied to this fear. There's no visible possibility of loss when we choose a FREE! item (it's free)." - Dan Areley, Predictably Irrational

Here's the link to the full article.

In case you don't have time to watch the video, or if you are printing this blog to share at your dinner table (recommended), I'll summarize his thesis:

When we give away Jewish educational experiences (classes, books, trips to Israel etc.) the fact that is free will draw more participants in the short-term but will often cheapen the experience in their eyes in the long-run.

Question for your table - Is he right?

Shabbat Shalom

PS - Speaking of Jewish education, click here for a view of perhaps the most cutting of cutting-edge innovations to come along in the past 50 years.

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Bar and Bat Mitzvah gift suggestions at (a service of JSL).

1 comment:

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