I remember going to a card show back when I was 15 and seeing the amount of people around this one table. This guy was selling everything from singles, packs and boxes of Baseball and Football. There had to be about 20 people surrounding his table. The closer I got to the table I could see that people were buying this one specific pack and box of cards. Till this day I can't remember what year, set or brand it was but I do remember the amount of demand for it. The more time that went on the more people joined into the pile of paying customers of this product. After a little time passed, I noticed he didn't have anyone crowding around his table so I went over and asked him about what was going on.
I remember him telling me that he was the only person at the show with this product and that a couple of people noticed this and told a few others about it and it caused a craze to buy it up. Even other dealers were in on buying some of it too. The good old supply and demand was in full effect on this day for this dealer. He cleaned up really well at that show.
This brings me to my topic, What influences you into buying? I know that I can say that a scene like that would not have enticed me into buying a product. Even to this day I wouldn't want to be in on that, unless of course it was a promoted special or something known prior to being at the store or show.
But what really does influence you? Nowadays we have an unlimited amount of resources to investigate through on new products just released as well as future pre-order products. We even have the next year releases being shown off as a promotional kick to stir the collecting world on what's to come.
More recently Topps has been at the front of the line teasing customers with pictures of those White Whales, and Jumbo Patches of newly Released cards. They even now recently started showing next years product designs to get the buzz out. Their marketing of their products have gone into overload, and it certainly works.
For myself I like looking through the Sell Sheets prior to a release of a product. I have even waited till the day of the release sometimes to figure out if I'll invest in a product. All it might take it that second look through a product sheet to notice something I didn't see before that catches my eye and gives me the urge to buy a product. At other times it could be just meeting up with a couple of other collectors at the hobby shop talking about the products to influence me into buying them.
Up until about 3 years ago I didn't touch anything but Baseball. I didn't care for Football or Hockey products at all. One day I went into the hobby shop and was talking with the owner. He is a big football fan and was always telling me about the football products but wasn't pushy on me buying any. Every now and again he would show me products either through sell sheets or opened packs the store displayed for customers. On this certain day he showed me 2010 Panini Threads and I started to become interested in the product. Not sure really how it happened but I ended up buying my first box of football cards right then.
Needless to say I've been buying Football as well as Hockey ever since. It didn't really take a strong force to wrestle me down into buying a product I didn't buy previously or some big advertising campaign. It was something very small and over time I caved into buying.
Recently the Fleer Retro Basketball hit the streets and took off to crazy highs. I'm still puzzled on how this product shot up so fast and for so much, but to others they can't get enough of it and some are even paying the higher prices to get it. This might have been that Michael Jordan has an autographed card in the product or maybe it was just advertised very well. Not really sure, but again the influence on this product going forward is the selling price. Simply by charging $50-100 less of the current price will create an influence in buying this product, regardless if you buy basketball or not. You would be influenced simply by the lower cost of a very hot product.
Are you the same? Are you influenced by hot products in the market place? Maybe it takes a long time for you to be influenced into buying a certain brand or sport that you might not have considered previously? Or is it as simple as you look through the sell sheets or checklists and pick out what you want to buy at that time? Many of us have different ways about buying our products and might even have a variety of different ways that come together.
It really just comes down to our own preferred way to buying a product, even if it is influenced by seeing a hoard of people surrounding a dealers table. The beauty about it is that it's your own. You can modify it which ever way you want it. Every collector has their own methodology on buying products. Just ask other collectors on how they buy products and what influences them. You might even be surprised on their ways of buying and try it out on your own.