What’s the first thing I’d do if I somehow ran into a very large amount of money?
You guessed it. I would immediately pay off the mortgage on our brand-new house. It would be quite the celebration!
Because I know that I’m paying nearly 100% interest for the 1st half of the life of that loan.
I wouldn’t care about a new car, or a boat, or a big trip. All I would care about would be paying off the mortgage.
Then… placing the rest in savings and investments.
From there, I might consider a family vacation or newer cars; but that would be my last priority.
Yet I’ve never seen a lottery ticket commercial or an injury lawyer commercial showing a winner who joyfully exclaims, “With the money I won… first, I immediately paid off the mortgage on my house, then put the rest in savings and investments, so that I’ll actually be making money for the rest of my life instead of losing it quickly just because I have more!”
Granted, that’s what I’d say.
But apparently, that’s not what the targeted audience for lottery ticket winners or injury lawsuit winners would do, based on what is portrayed in these commercials:
When I see these kinds of commercials, I know that the marketing department for the lottery and injury lawyers are not baiting people like me, who have learned the hard way by living in debt for years, but who finally became debt free after following the teachings of Dave Ramsey, and who are now focused on paying off a mortage ASAP, to better save and invest all future income from there.
Of course, I’m not against the lottery or injury lawyers; I see good in what they do.
I’m just simply deconstructing some of the psychology involved in some of their marketing… the way I’ve pointed out in the past that fast food logos almost always include red and yellow as their main colors to try to make you slow down (like you do at a yellow light) and stop (like you do at a red light) for their restaurant.
It appears that lottery commercials are trying to make people think that if they regularly “invest” in lottery tickets, they will stand a decent chance of living the rock star (or rap star?) lifestyle, by blowing the money on depreciating liabilities, instead of assets that will hold their value; or in legitimate, profitable investments.
Perhaps this is what the advertisers want people to think when they their commercials:
“You deserve more money than you know how to manage, so once you win, spend your money on consumer items shown in this commercial, ones that immediately lose their value once you buy them, instead of ones that keep or gain value.”
Like I said, I’ve yet to see a lottery or lawsuit commercial that portrays the winner immediately paying off their mortgage with the money; then going on to save and invest the rest. I’ve never heard that even mentioned in one of these commercials, yet it’s the very first thing I would care about.
It really shouldn’t be that ironic.
So apparently, people who make lottery ticket commercials and injury lawyer commercials don’t have me in mind as a marketable demographic.
Maybe then it’s not that ironic that back in 1999 when I woke up in a hosptial after having been knocked unconscious after wrecking on a bike, and an injury lawyer was there as I opened my eyes, offering to help me “win the money I deserve,” I politely thanked him, but turned him down.
And for the record, I rarely buy a lottery ticket.