Fancy vs. Fun

Fancy vs. Fun

How do you trick an oenophile into paying more for a wine? Give him a wine with a name that’s difficult to pronounce. This is what wine researcher Antonia Mantonakis of Brock University in Ontario discovered in a recent marketing study.

The more knowledge experiment participants had about wine, the more likely they were to report liking a wine from a hard-to-pronounce winery. The participants also reported they were more willing to pay $2 more for a wine if it had a really-hard-to-pronounce name.

So, why would a wine expert get duped into thinking a wine with a fancy name is invariably better and more expensive? Mantonakis explains that wine geeks seek out any subtle difference they can find.

If something is rare and unique then maybe it might be a higher value and it may be something that is more special.

And what about your average, everyday non-expert wine drinker? Mantonakis told NPR that cheap and tasty with a really fun name wins the day for the so-called low knowledge wine drinker. Non-experts like wines with names like Fat Bastard, Cupcake or Mad Housewife. These wines evoke something comfortable with a slightly adventurous edge.

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