In a recent study researchers at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management say the ‘maximizing mindset’ leads to disappointment – if you call your product “the best” it actually decreases its chance for success.

Is the product you represent the absolute best in its category? If so, you may want to keep that news to yourself. While this applies to consumer behaviour – it probably translates to companies promising the best product or services in the B2B arena too – here’s what the study says:
“If you’re in this maximizing mindset, no matter how good the product is, [consumers are] going to be unsatisfied with it if it’s anything less than the most amazing thing ever,” Neal J. Roese, a professor of marketing at the Kellogg School of Management and co-author of the study told BusinessNewsDaily. “It’s a hidden danger that marketers need to be aware of.” 

The study points to Red Bull, which never compares itself to competitors or claims that it’s the best. “By sidestepping such superlatives,” Fox Business writes, “the researchers found, Red Bull pushes consumers outside of the maximizing mindset and decreases dissatisfaction with the product.” 

In the study, the maximizing mindset caused consumers to feel regret or disappointment if the product didn’t live up to their expectations.