Scarcity value is an economics term that alludes to the increase in a commodity’s value relative to its supply. It is a strategy that brands often employ by artificially lowering an item’s supply to boost its value to customers.
Consumers see it all the time, whether they notice it or not.
Fans of Jordan footwear are familiar with the long lines and improbable lottery percentages of actually being able to purchase shoes.
Luxury brands such as Chanel and Luis Vuitton also employ this strategy to their advantage as well.
Although lucky customers who are able to purchase the item are elated, when there is a low supply of a hot commodity, everyone involved, including retail workers, is often miserable.
Jay Park‘s Won Soju brand seems to be taking this strategy to a new extreme.
The mogul’s soju brand, launched earlier this year in February, has become the hottest liquor/spirit in Korea at the moment. Fans of the artist and those just curious about the hype are all hoping to try the artist’s offering. Unfortunately, the soju brand has been selling its liquor in extremely limited quantities, so many consumers have yet to get their hands on the product.
Recently the soju brand struck up an exclusive partnership with convenience store GS25. The convenience store franchise is one of the largest in Korea and has stores all over Korea. Many fans of the brand were excited to finally be able to try it. But fans were disappointed to hear each store would only be selling a total of 12 bottles of the liquor per week.
What’s more, it has now been reported that the stores would be only selling six bottles of the liquor a week. Employees and franchisees of the convenience store are now complaining that customers are haggling them to get their hands on the liquor.
Customers are complaining about why we aren’t selling them the liquor. They offer to pay upfront to reserve a bottle, and many people call in to ask if we are selling them. All of this is making it unbearable.
— G25 Franchisee
A G25 representative has stated that the short supply is due to the special distilling process of the liquor and that they are exploring options to help increase production.
What do you think about the situation? Are six bottles a week too little, or is it just right to create optimum hype?