Its Official, You’re Being Brainwashed Into Buying Everything at Target

by | September 6, 2018

Going to Target, I’ve tried not taking my wallet inside, only to return to the car two hours later to get the overused bankcard.

Repeating to myself ‘just one item’ while walking inside is futile. Ten throw pillows, a cute picture, and new bedsheets later, I’m walking out with the one item I even went in there for.

Refinery 29 interviewed some experts on the subject of shopping including Tom Meyvis, a professor of marketing at New York University’s Stern School of Business. Meyvis says it’s the layout of the Target (and apparently not the big, red bullseye) that makes us helplessly hypnotized to buy everything in sight.

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“Stores have an idea about the path [shoppers take],” he says. “Walmart was once famous for doing things like putting like Band-Aids next to fishing hooks and things like that. Something you don’t naturally associate, but once you see them there, it makes sense. So when people come in for something in one category, you can cross-sell, you can sell them something that compliments in the next product category by making sure they’re right next to each other.”

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Joe Perdew, Vice President of Target Store Design, tells Refinery 29 that the store goes out of its way to help direct you to what you really really want. We know that some guests want to grab a coffee at Starbucks and explore the aisles, so we’ve added features like dynamic product vignettes throughout the store that help guests envision how things will fit into their lives. Our revamped Beauty department looks like a specialty shop and is designed to invite guests to try out products, and in Home, products are cross-merchandised and displayed in lifestyle settings, so guests can imagine what they’ll look like in their own homes.”

So what if we’re a little brainwashed, forget Disney being the happiest place on Earth. With Starbucks on my way in, Target is where I go to become one with the pillows.

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Emma Williams

Associate Editor, USA | Contactable via [email protected]

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