Temptation Bundling

This post is sponsored by Oddit

Imagine this…

You just dropped some serious cash on a new elliptical machine.

After spending an hour setting it up, you stand back to admire your new purchase. This thing has all the bells and whistles!

At that very moment your significant other walks in the room and says with a chuckle, “It looks awesome. And for the amount you spent, I better see you using it.”

“Oh don’t worry,” you reply. “I will” while giving them a playful elbow in the ribs.

Ten minutes later you’re wearing your best athleisure and step onto your new machine.

You feel motivated and excited. You pop in your earbuds and hit play on the “energy boosting” playlist on Spotify.

You planned to do a 30 minute workout, but 10 minutes in you are… SO. FREAKING. BORED.

“How the hell do people do this?” you think to yourself.

After a few weeks of concerted effort, you’ve clocked 30 miles on the elliptical. But each mile felt soooo painful. There’s got to be a better way.

That’s when you notice that the elliptical has a ledge designed for a tablet. And as it happens you just downloaded your fav game on your iPad—Settlers of Catan.

What do you do?

In today’s edition of Why We Buy, we’re taking a look at Temptation Bundling—why pairing a “should” with a “want” can make buyers happier.

Let’s get into it…

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  1. Feature one thing in your announcement bar and make it actionable. Free shipping is a quick win.
  2. Don’t clutter the navigation. Put your categories inside the menu, or feature all of them with one line (“Shop all” or “Shop the best sellers”).
  3. Place a social proof call-out at the top.
  4. Carousels are distracting and most users never get past the first image. Remove them.
  5. Add a secondary link directly in the image so customers can shop the product they see.
  6. Make sure your headline meets color contrast accessibility standards.
  7. Make your CTAs full-width on mobile.

The Psychology of Temptation Bundling 🧠

Temptation bundling is when you pair a pleasurable activity that you want to do—like playing a game on your iPad—with an activity that you should do—like working out.

Pairing activities that feel indulgent with activities that are important but provide delayed gratification can combat our inertia bias and motivate us to take action. This psychological phenomenon was coined by a group of researchers in 2014.

The researchers ran an experiment to see if they could improve gym attendance. They discovered when people were given access to scintillating audiobooks they could ONLY listen to at the gym, attendance went up.

Inside Your Buyer’s Mind 🧐

Your buyers are imperfect humans. Oftentimes buyers know that they should use your product, yet they delay because they assume the experience will be unpleasant.

Whether you sell workout equipment, accounting software, or own a dentist practice, your buyers won’t get value from your product if they don’t use it.

That said, buyers will be much more likely to do unpleasant things when they’re tightly coupled with something tempting. Temptation bundling makes should activities more enticing and makes customers more likely to do them. It also makes want activities feel less wasteful and guilt-inducing. It’s a win-win for you and your buyer.

How To Apply This 🤑

Alright, so how can we apply this right now to sell more?

Make bundling the default

If your product or service is perceived to be unpleasant—like going to the dentist or DMV—look for ways to bundle it with a pleasurable experience.

Many dentist offices now have TVs so patients can watch their fav sitcom rather than staring at the ceiling.

And many salons now have “quiet chairs” where tired guests can sit silently and sip sparkling wine while getting their hair done without needing to make small talk.

Ask yourself: how can you make an unpleasant experience more delighted? The options are endless.

Promote benefits of bundling

Temptation bundling is a fairly new phenomenon and your buyer may not know about its benefits. Tell them.

For example, a salon could promote their pedicures—an indulgent service—by saying something like, “Overwhelmed by emails? Get to inbox zero and get beautiful feet in under 30 minutes.”

If you run an e-commerce store that sells products people know they “should” buy like a 5-step skincare routine, you can recommend that people also treat themselves to something they “want”— like a special cleansing brush that makes the whole routine feel more like a facial than a chore.

Proactiv (an Oddit client) does this with their beauty routine bundles. But rather than recommending customers buy the brush, they give it as a free gift.

SnackMagic - Temptation Bundling - Customer Camp - Why We Buy

Host coworking parties

You can make dull tasks more enticing by making them social. Maybe you sell software that people know they should use, yet dread, like accounting software. You could invite users to attend an online co-working party to do their tax prep together.

Want to really wow them? Send a cool branded care package like Snack Magic to everyone who signs up. You’ve got instant super fans.

SnackMagic - Temptation Bundling - Customer Camp - Why We Buy

The Short of It 💥

Some products and services are painful but important—like going to the dentist.

Others are pleasurable yet guilt-inducing—like getting a pedicure.

Temptation bundling can reduce pains and guilt, resulting in more happy buyers.

Until next time, happy selling!



Wanna really get inside your buyer’s head?

There are a few ways I can help:

  1. Get explosive clarity about what works with buyers by learning how to conduct 1:1 Clarity Calls (3200+ happy students)
  2. Learn how to mine online reviews from real buyers to generate ideas and copy that converts (500+ happy students)
  3. Book a 1:1 strategy call with Katelyn and get the answers you need to get unstuck and move forward with confidence
  4. Apply to sponsor an upcoming issue of Why We Buy (next opening in March)

Thank you to our featured sponsor

Written By Katelyn

Katelyn Bourgoin is the CEO of Customer Camp, a 4X founder, and a cheese lover. She lives by a simple mantra: whoever gets closer to the customer wins.

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