Is selling experiences instead of stuff one of the solution to overconsumption?
The true performance of a product is to replace the act of purchase a good by the purchase of a service. This will lead to a significant decrease in material consumption and economic profit. The customers are attracted by the “personality” of the brand and their language to sell their performance. Customers are associating themselves with a particular brand that matched more with their value and point of view. Customers are so becoming more loyal which is reducing the marketing costs.
For 200 years we are in the same industrial economy model. Industrialization is based on the optimization of the production process in order to reduce unit costs. This can be applied to goods of all kinds but also food, buildings, and durable goods.
The consequences of these 200 years are not that good. 20% of the world population use 80% of world resource consumption. The population is growing and the middle class with it so 100% will be reached soon. What are you going to consume then? sustainable development has to start with a considerable reduction of the consumption of resources. Such a ‘dematerialization’ is only possible through innovation, which needs to be driven by the economy. This then defines a new management task, to unlink economic success from resource consumption, i.e. to produce the same sales turnover and profits with a substantially reduced resource throughput throughout the economy. In many cases, this will only be feasible by redefining corporate strategies, orienting them towards selling performance rather than goods.
Sustainable development is focusing on qualitative solutions, not quantitative ones. Without knowing it we are starting a new economic model of ‘dematerialization’. Innovation, technology and communication made it possible and the demand is booming. Consumers are eager to experience their life in a more healthy, surprising or easy way.