Almost all the demand in the world is created by

a) scaring you or                                                                                   b) playing to your ego

The BFSI space is ALSO guilty of similar techniques.

First you go to a good school, college, etc. top your engineering class, medical class, etc.

Then when you start earning you are told:

Finance is very complicated, give us your money (mutual fund), you do not understand risk we are the experts (insurance), …so we all listened and went to them and paid them a fee for doing all this.

Then they came to us and said “Look it is all a big mistake – we took too much money from you and UNDER-PERFORMED the market, so here is an Index fund. This fund was just supposed to buy and hold the index. However some mutual fund houses charged you 2.5% p.a. for doing this. (Till the ever wakeful regulator put a cap of 1%)

Take the case of drinking water. If you are not sure about the brand of bottled water that you are buying, you are actually better off drinking local water. There are far greater restrictions on a local Municipality about drinking water than on a unethical bottler. Believe me, I have done tons of research on bottled water. YOU DO NOT NEED IT AT ALL. If you must drink water, carry a bottle. That is much safer and far better on the environment. Of course this should be a steel bottle – so that you reduce the usage of plastic.

Similarly in the medical field doctors tell me what terminology they use depends on the client. So words like ‘I would not have suggested it to a poor patient, but…’ are enough for a guy to feel he is rich and says yes to the more expensive solution. I guess the trick is to go to a cheaper neighborhood and find out if a less expensive solution can be found. Even the vitamin tablets – first seek natural ways of increasing your vitamin B, C, D,….and then go for supplements.

32 year old patients regularly have high Blood Pressure – and do not even know that there are natural ways of reducing it. They take to popping pills – and will do that till the end of their lives. Sadly, there are not enough doctors who can suggest lifestyle and diet changes. I keep wondering whether doctors are taught enough pharmacology / even Indian dietary habits. This forces them to trust / believe the MR who comes. Sounds dangerous, right?

Another industry that thrives on this health scare is the packaged food industry. If you use packaged food to meet 30% or more of your hunger needs, you could be in big trouble. All the children oriented drinks are laced with sugar. And they are marketed as a health drink. However mothers worried about vitamins, and proteins rush to buy Bournvita, Horlicks, and the like.

So when you see an ad see to which part of your brain are they catering to. If you do not understand, YOU need not buy the product. If you understand find out if there is a smarter alternative.

For all this you need to do only one thing: LIVE IN THE PRESENT. Simple.

 

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  1. Nice article – many things are evolving in a developed country like India and Financial products are no different.
    If more people wise up (your articles help a lot) we will see change.

    I use glass bottles! Don’t feel confidant about Steel and Plastic(even if BPA free)!

  2. Subra Sir,
    Once, one of my professor said : If one can talk nicely, he can sell even clay laddus, and if one doesn’t talk, even golden laddus will be difficult to sell. It all depends how convincing is the seller. 10 years back we did not have different soaps for different people in the house. Today we have different soaps for gents, ladies, and children. Tomorrow we may have different soaps for different parts of the body!!!

    Its a mad rush and peer pressure out there. I had a very difficult time installing a cheap and simple UV based water purifier in my new house while all other people were installing costly RO based purifier. But ultimately I won.

    About the medical community also you are very true. The main source of information to an average doctor is the Med Rep, while actually it must be the literature. The average time given for a patient is slowly decreasing with time. No doctor wants to give time to explain the non medical therapies for disease control. Many doctors actually don’t know the details of term “lifestyle and dietary changes”.

    But the patients too are many times not willing to change their method of living. The rich don’t have time for these menial factors. The poor are bent upon taking “costly medicines” as they relate cost of the medicine to better health. If I write “No Medication” on their OPD slip, they become either sad or angry (itne paise liye aur ek dawai bhi nahi likhi?)

    About the new age western food, I think this link says it all
    http://myfox8.com/2013/04/24/14-year-old-burger-refuses-to-rot/

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