Just read a great post by Seth Godin called Hungry, which explains how marketers are great at teaching well-fed consumers to want to eat more than they need. He mentions canceling cable as a prime example. Cable TV used to fill a unique need. Twenty years ago, it was the only way to get first run movies and was an exciting alternative to the content available on the three networks. Cable was introduced at a reasonable price and it’s adoption soared.
Things have changed. We now have free digital broadcast tv, DVDs, Hulu.com, Netflix and fixed price set top boxes like Roku. In spite of this competition, cable prices have only gone up. Yet it’s still hard for most of us to make the phone call and cancel cable TV. Why? Because we still want our snack despite being full.