Does Costlier Mean More Qualitative?

A follow-up question to the question above could be – does superior branding / reputation equate to a better product?

We subconsciouly (or unconsciously) almost always associate the price level of a product (or service) with its value (quality). And we confuse great branding and awesome advertising gimmickry with accompanying QoS.

This article is prompted by a post on a popular forum extolling the virtues of a wonderful, Chinese-made mobile phonet (the Tecno t9).

Chinese phones, products and services (at least the ones offered to us here in Nigeria) are (regarded as being) sub-standard. It is my guess that they are inferior because there is nobody really specifying and enforcing standards for the products/services we are inundated with. It may also be linked to the general economic situation. You generally get what (or less than!) you pay for.

The impression in the our mind is that ‘Chinese products are poor-quality’. It may be erroneous to  assume the veracity of this statement in all instances. Traditionally, Japanese automobiles have built up a branding of ‘quality automobiles’ over the years. You can not go wrong ‘buying Japanese’ – right? But with the recurrent and persistent problems of embarrassing automobiles churned out recently (and the need for numerous recalls), it would be wise not to assume that ‘any Japanese automobile would have stellar qualities’.

Related to that is the traditional thinking that ”Korean are cars are not reliable’. While that statement was so a  few years past, it is not quite correct with the latest crop of vehicles from that country’s Automobile Industry.

Branding is frequently  about ‘mind programming’. Often, it has no grounding in reality. Most humans patronize products/services based on intangibles like emotion, reputation, branding, need-to-belog, rather than crtical analyses and cold logic.

You want to buy a tube of toothpaste. You jump to the conclusion that a ‘Macleans’ should be better for your orthodontics – than a lesser-known, more-recent brand. You may be totally wrong. Your judgement should be based on facts, niot impression, hearsay or mere perception. Not based on your being ‘used-to-it’

Perhaps you have been drinking ‘Milo’ or ‘Bournvita’ for many years?.
You are accustomed to that. And you believe it is better that a ‘Richocco’ or other lesser-known brands. The question is – have you taken your time to actually read the pack, and find out which is more nutritious, and gives better value for money?

I have been using the ‘StarTimes’ cable service for a while now. I also have ‘DSTV’. I have carefully looked at the value for money, and have been able to conclude that ‘StarTimes’ give me better value for money spent (all factors considered). The point of this personal illustration is to point out the danger in not analyzing certain (financial) decisions viz-a-viz the service enjoyed (and needed). If you leave your house early in the morning and come back late Monday-Friday, can you justify maintaining a cable service that provides hundreds of Channels that are NEVER watched? And you keep paying N10,300/month because ‘you wanna belong’ or ‘you can afford it’?

Do you spend money on over-hyped products? Do you act like a Lemming, and merely follow the crowd? The majority can be wrong, and you can actually fool most of the people most of the time. It is all about positioning and branding – fuelled by subliminal and smart advertising!.

Next time you want to shell out your hard earned money, pause and think. Am I truly getting the best for the money I am about to spend?
Is that Toyota REALLY better (all things factored-in) than that Hyundai by that margin of hundreds-of-thousands-of-Naira?

The best-known is not always the best. And the premium-priced may just be working on your psyche to looses up ‘yo wallit’. And being around longer does not NECESSARILY confer better service provision. Lots of ‘new-kids-on-the-block’ embrace & extend’

The bottom-line? Have the FACTS, and do not just assume that reputation / branding is enough guidance in deciding on which product to flow with.



  • Eyebeekay


    Absolutely NOT.

    I wonder if ANY service will dare have such a policy..

  • If, for example, you are out of town in March and you didnt pay your subscription to Startimes. You now decided to pay for April when you got back. Is it true that you would be required to pay for the month of March that you never enjoyed?

  • Eyebeekay

    Well, based on current subscription cost of N1,000/ month, Startimes is better value for money spent .

    You have the following channels:

    FRANCE 24 (E)
    TVC 1
    STVE 2
    E-STAR (Nigerian movies)
    NTA 24
    NTA sports
    MTV Base

    If you are not a football freak (like I am NOT), and you only spend like three – for waking hours indoors daily, you may prefer to go with 'the Star.'

    The edge dstv has is the more comprehensive programme mix (overkill ,if yoi ask me), & slightly sharper picture quality.

    But in. terms of 'value :money', StarTimes shines brighter…

    Fact is, like the 'per second' billing thing with the gsm people then, we need to have PayPerView. Why continue to pay for what you hardly ever have time to enjoy . It makes NO sense!

    We need more capable competition in. the cableTv industry.

    Then the subscribers can have greater value for money..

  • The increase in the subscription fees for DSTV is a catalyst for one to start thinking of a good alternative. How would you compare the services of Startimes to DSTV? I read somewhere that you are expected to pay subscription for Startimes services for unused periods, meaning that you can not take time out on your subscription.

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