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Why losses loom larger than gains

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Posted by , 23rd May 2020

Why do losses loom larger? Loss aversion is twice as powerful a force when compared with taking an action that could lead to a benefit. Why?

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

Loss aversion is a powerful force.

It’s the deliberate act of not doing something that offers a potential gain. 

This excellent article from Wikipedia explains the thinking as summed-up in the feeling “it’s better not to lose $5 than to find $5.”

Scientific studies see loss aversion identified “as being twice as powerful a force” when compared with taking an action that could lead to a benefit.

Why would that be? 

Well, of course, the reason is fear. 

Usually the fear of being wrong.

Nobody wants to be seen as the person who made the wrong decision.

That particular fear has been a driver in the corporate world for years and it’s a stress inducer of the highest order.

It’s also, I think, responsible for the rise of a blame culture.

Otherwise bright and positive people focus on who will take the blame if something goes wrong before taking a decision.

The blame lies with top management because they set the direction and culture of a business.

Where staff are scared, innovation and creativity are stifled or killed.

Often the focus on what might be lost as opposed to what could be gained wins arguments.

In event marketing, thinking like this can stop you trying new things. Like a new event, a new designer or a different stand team.

It might kill a bolder approach to reaching the people who if you met them, could move your business forward and quickly.  

In my coaching and consulting work, I focus on thoroughly understanding who matters to a client’s commercial success.

This approach mitigates the risk of “getting things wrong” and increases the potential for success not just within the event programme but across the wider business. 

If this approach to event marketing sounds like one that your company could benefit from, it won’t hurt to talk. 

My email address is david@exhibitorsonly.biz

I wish you safe and well. 

Posted in B2B Marketing  /  Trade show marketing  /  Trade show sales

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