I stumbled upon a news report about a taste test involving wine. The purpose of the test was to determine how price affects the drinker’s perception of the quality of the wine and how price tags enhance enjoyment of a product.

Done in California, the research demonstrated that a marketing specialist can increase a person’s enjoyment of wine by just sticking a higher price on it.

According to an Agence France-Presse report, “The study asked 21 volunteers to sample five different bottles of Cabernet Sauvignon and rate their taste preferences. The taste test was run 15 times, with the wines presented in random order.

“The taste test was blind except for information on the price of the wine. Without telling the volunteers, the researchers presented two of the wines twice, once with the true price tag, and again with a fake one.

“They also passed off a $90 bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon as a $10 bottle, and presented a $5 bottle as one worth $45.”

The results might surprise lay people, but marketing experts could have known it all along. The researchers found that raising the price of a bottle of wine made the wine taste better in the subjects’ perception of his drinking experience.

According to the report, the volunteers consistently gave higher ratings to the more “expensive” wines.

Not only that, brain scans showed greater neural activity in the pleasure center when the subjects were sampling those “pricey” wine.

The researchers concluded that “the brain’s rewards center takes into account subjective beliefs about the quality of the experience.”

Click Wine Test Shows Power of Marketing on Brain for the complete story.

The same story can be found here: Study: $10 Wine Tastes Better with a $90 Price

The story intrigues me so much that I’m wondering if the same psychology will work in our magic business. Can a Filipino magician raise his price to enhance people’s perception of his show? Will clients regard highly a Pinoy magician’s so-so program if he tacks a high price tag on it?

If people’s perception and enjoyment of our show can be manipulated by savvy pricing schemes, then illusion marketing can be a powerful tool to turbo charge our business the dummy’s way. I’m done with rehearsals and long nights of research and study. All I need is tinker with my prices and my clients will deify me and my show.

That would be cool…

Stay magical,