Consumer Behavior Study Notes
MKTG 4150 STUDY NOTES Chapter 1: An Introduction to Consumer Behaviour What is Consumer Behaviour? Consumer Behaviour: the study of the processes involved when individuals or groups select, purchase, use, or dispose of products, services, ideas, or experiences to satisfy needs and desires. Consumer behaviour is a process Buyer behaviour: the interaction between consumers and producers at the time of purchase. * Exchange (two or more organizations or people give and receive something of value) is an integral part of marketing Consumer behaviour involves many different actors Purchaser and the user of a product may not necessarily be the same person * Another person can also act as an influencer when providing recommendations for or against certain products without actually buying or using them Segmenting Consumers Market Segmentation: process of identifying groups of consumers who are similar to one another in one or more ways and devising marketing strategies that appeal to one or more groups Demographics: statistics that measure observable aspects of a population (i. e. birth rate, age distribution, income, etc.
* Changes and trends revealed in demographic studies are of great interest to marketers since it can be used to locate and predict the sizes of markets * Markets can usually be segmented by age, gender, family structure, social class and income, ethnicity, geography, and lifestyles Chapter 2: Perception Exposure Exposure: the degree to which people notice a stimulus that is within range of their sensory receptors Sensory Thresholds Psychophysics: the science that focuses on how the physical environment is integrated into our personal, subjective world The absolute threshold
Absolute threshold: the minimum amount of stimulation that can be detected on a sensory channel The differential threshold Differential threshold: the ability of a sensory system to detect changes in a stimulus or differences between the two stimuli Just noticeable difference (JND): the minimum change in a stimulus that can be detected * The ability to detect a difference between two stimuli is the relative difference between the decibel level of the message and its surroundings Weber’s Law The stronger the initial stimulus, the greater its change must be for it to be noticed K= ? II where:
K = the constant increase or decrease necessary for the stimulus to be noticed (this varies across the senses) ?I = the minimal change in intensity of the stimulus required to be just noticeable to the person (JND) I = the intensity of the stimulus before the change occurs * Retailers generally use a markdown rule of at least 20% to make an impact on shoppers Subliminal Perception * Another word for “threshold” is limen and stimuli that fall below the limen are called subliminal Subliminal perception: occurs when the stimulus is below the level of the consumer’s awareness Subliminal techniques
Embeds: tiny figures that are inserted into magazine advertising by using high speed photography or airbrushing (supposedly exert strong but unconscious influences on innocent readers) Does subliminal perception work? Evaluating the evidence Factors why subliminal messages do not work: 1. There are wide individual differences in threshold levels. For a subliminal message to affect all individuals, it must be able to target ALL thresholds (which is impossible) 2. Advertisers cannot control the consumer’s position and distance from the screen (not everyone will have the same amount of exposure) 3.
Consumers must pay absolute attention to the stimulus (not everyone does, most people are distracted) 4. Even if there is an effect, it only operates on a general level (can’t get a specific message out) Attention Attention: the extent in which the brain’s processing activity is devoted to a particular stimulus Multitask: the ability to process information from more than one medium at a time Perceptual sensitivity: process in which people attend to only a small portion of the stimuli to which they are exposed Personal selection factors
Perceptual vigilance: consumers are more likely to be aware of stimuli that relate to their current needs (i.
e. if you are hungry… you will notice more food signs) Perceptual defence: people see what they want to see – and don’t see what they don’t want to see. If a stimulus is threatening to us in some way, we may not process it or we may distort its meaning so that it is more acceptable (i. e. smokers ignoring the warning on the cigarette package) Adaptation: the degree to which consumers continue to notice a stimulus over time (the more exposed to are, the less sensitive you are to it)
Factors leading to adaptation: * Intensity (less intense stimuli habituate because they have less of a sensory impact) * Duration (stimuli that require lengthy exposure to be processed tend to habituate because they require a long attention span) * Discrimination (simple stimuli tend to habituate because they do not require attention to detail) * Exposure (frequently encountered stimuli tend to habituate as the rate of exposure increases) * Relevance (stimuli that are irrelevant or unimportant will habituate because they fail to attract attention)
Stimulus selection factors Factors that allow stimuli to be noticed: * Size * Colour * Position * Novelty (stimuli that appear in unexpected ways or places tend to grab attention) Chapter 3: Learning & Memory Learning: relatively permanent change in behavior that is caused by experience. Incidental learning: unintentional acquisition of knowledge.
Behavioural Learning Theories Behavioral Learning Theories: assume learning takes place because of responses to external events. Classical Conditioning
Classical conditioning: when a stimulus that elicits a response is paired with another stimulus that initially does not elicit a response on its own. Over time this 2nd stimulus (UCS) causes a similar response because it is associated with the first stimulus (CS). Unconditional stimulus (UCS): a stimulus naturally capable of causing a response (i. e.
flavouring) Conditioned stimulus (CS): a stimulus that causes a response because of a learned association (i. e. bell) Conditioned response (CR): a new or modified response elicited by a stimulus after conditioning (i. . drool) Repetition * Repeated exposures increase the strength of stimulus-response associations and prevent the decay of these associations in memory * Most effective repetition strategy seems to be a combination of spaced exposures that alternate in terms of media that are more or less involving * Lack of association can be due to extinction (when the effects of a prior conditioning are reduced and finally disappear) Advertising wearout: repeated similar advertisements will lead to consumers tuning out
Stimulus generalization Stimulus Generalization: tendency of stimuli similar to CS to evoke similar conditioned responses Masked branding: strategy used to deliberately hide a product’s true origin Applications: * Family branding (capitalize on the repetition of a company name) * Product line extensions (related products are added to an established brand) * Licensing (well-known names are rented by others) * Look-alike packaging (distinctive packaging designs create strong associations with a particular brand)
Stimulus discrimination Stimulus Discrimination: stimulus similar to CS is not followed by a UCS -> causes weakened reactions Instrumental Conditioning Instrumental Conditioning: known as operant conditioning, individual learns to perform behaviors that produce positive outcomes and avoids negative ones. There are 4 types: positive/negative reinforcement, punishment, extinction Shaping: process of rewarding intermediate actions (i.
e. customers are rewarded with discounts in hopes of them coming for a second visit) 1.
Positive Reinforcement: rewarding, response is strengthened and appropriate behavior learned. RECEIVES A REACTION AFTER DOING SOMETHING, SIMILAR TO PUNISHMENT. (i.
e. getting a cookie for every A+) 2. Negative Reinforcement: the avoidance of a negative outcome by doing said behavior, NOTHING IS RECEIVED AFTER DOING SOMETHING. This is different from punishment, which doesn’t use avoidance to learn. (i. e.
getting compliments from wearing nice perfume) 3. Punishment: a response is followed by unpleasant events. RECEIVES AN UNPLEASANT REACTION. (i. e. lap on the hand for eating without utensils) 4.
Extinction: removal of positive event weakens responses, which are no longer followed by positive outcome. Consumers learn that responses no longer produce positive outcome. (i. e. woman no longer receives compliments on her perfume) Key for marketers is determining the most effective reinforcement schedule (amount of effort and resources they must devote to rewarding consumers to condition desired behaviours): * Fixed-Interval Reinforcement: A reward is made after a specified time period has elapsed.
i. e. mouse hitting a button for food that will only come in intervals of 2 minutes, they’ll realize that and only begin to hit the button as every 2 min. mark looms but will not do anything right after that mark has passed. textbook uses an example of holiday sales season * Variable-Interval Reinforcement: Time before reinforcement varies around some average but not specified. i.
e. mystery store check ups by management, induces staff to always maintain a high-level of service as opposed to only when “check up” periods loom * Fixed-ratio Reinforcement: Reinforcement occurs after a fixed # of responses. . e. royalty programs, getting a prize for hitting a button 10x * Variable-ratio Reinforcement: Reinforcement occurs after a certain number of responses, but he/she does not know how many are required. Produces very high and steady rates, behavior is very difficult to distinguish.
i. e. slot machines, you know you’ll win eventually, just don’t know exactly how many tries Frequency Marketing: reinforces behavior of regular purchasers by giving prizes in line with amount purchased. i. e. royalty programs, frequent flyer programs.
is building a database for refining product mixes, marketing strategies, tailoring communications – makes retention programs more effective, product launches/redesigns more successful, blunders prevented. Cognitive Learning Theory Cognitive Learning Theory: contrasting behavioral theories of learning, this focuses more on internal mental processes, i. e. creativity and insight. Views people as problem solvers and we actively use info to master the environment. Is Learning Conscious or Not? Mindlessness: the ability to process information in an automatic/passive manner * Argument as to whether or not learning is conscious.
There are arguments that some people do things mindlessly and rely on their “adaptive unconsciousness” Observational Learning Observational Learning: occurs when people watch the actions of others and note the reinforcements they receive for their behaviors; learning vicariously rather than directly; AKA Modeling Lesson: marketers can show consumer a model + reinforcement without having to directly reward/punish the consumer to influence behavior The Role of Memory in Learning Memory: process of acquiring information and storing it over time for future availability The way info is encoded is important, if data can be associated with other info in memory already, better chance of new data being retained Sensory Meaning: a stimulus may be interpreted in terms of the senses it evokes, such as colour or shape Semantic Meaning: symbolic associations, i. e. rich people drink champagne Episodic memories: memories that relate to events that are personally relevant. + motivation to retain these memories Flashbulb Memories: memories that are triggered by a stimulus, i. e.
(wedding) song that reminds them of their wedding Memory Systems 3 Types of Memory Systems: 1. Sensory Memory: permits storage of info received from our senses – very temporary, i. e. the smell of a bakery when we walk by. If info warrants further investigation, it passes through the attentional gate and xferred to STM. a.
Capacity: High b. Duration: < 1 second (vision), few seconds (hearing) 2. Short-Term Memory/working memory: stores info for limited time, capacity is limited. Holds info that we are currently processing c.
Capacity: Limited d.
Duration: < 20 seconds e. Chunking: combining small pieces into larger pieces to store info 3. Long-Term Memory: a system that allows for long-term retaining of info f. Requires elaborative rehearsal: thinking about meaning of stimulus and relating to other information in memory Storing Information in Memory Activation Models of Memory: depending on nature of processing task, different levels of processing occur that activate some aspects of memory rather than others, +effort, +likely of LTM storage Associative networks
Associative Network/Knowledge Structures: a spiderweb of links containing info for a set of concepts (brands, stores, manufacturers), a storage unit * Info are placed into nodes, connected by associative links. Pieces of info seen similarly are chunked in some abstract form Hierarchical Processing Model: info is processed bottom-up, begins basic then increases to complex processing, if it fails to evoke further processing, info is terminated and capacity allocated elsewhere Evoked Set: a list of recallable information pertaining to a questioned category (i. .
perfume). Implication: position itself in the right categories by providing cues (luxury for ex. ) Spreading activation Spreading Activation: as one node is activated, associated nodes are as well through links. = recalling competition/relevant attributes of brand, such as * brand-specific – claims of brand * ad-specific – claims of ad * brand identification * product category – how product works, where to be used, experiences with it * evaluative reactions – “that looks like fun” Levels of knowledge
Levels of Knowledge: Meaning Concepts > Proposition > Schema Script (schema): sequence of procedures expected from an individual Factors influencing forgetting Interference: stimulus-response associations will be forgotten if Retroactive: learning new responses to same/similar stimuli Proactive: prevent new learning as a result of past learning Chapter 4: Motivation and Values The Motivational Process Motivation: processes that cause behavior, occurs when need is aroused and consumer wants to satisfy it Utilitarian: desire to achieve some functional/practical benefit. i. e.
cquiring a pair of durable running shoes Hedonic: experiential need involving emotional responses/fantasies. i. e. a special pair of running shoes for triathlon Goal: the desired end state Drive: the difference between a consumer’s present and desired state creates tension. The magnitude of this tension determines the urgency of the consumer to reduce this tension. That degree of arousal is drive Want: a manifestation of a need (basic needs such as hunger); particular form of consumption to satisfy a need (such as eating hamburgers or hotdogs or chicken wings or caviar to satisfy hunger) Motivational Strength degree to which a person is willing to expend energy to reach a goal as opposed to another reflects his/her underlying motivation to attain that goal Drive Theory Drive Theory: biological needs that produce unpleasant states of arousal (stomach growling).
We are motivated to reduce tension * marketing: tension = unpleasant state – desired state :. achieve balance = homeostasis Expectancy Theory Expectancy Theory: behavior is largely pulled by expectations of achieving desirable outcomes, positive incentives. It is a cognitive theory rather than biological Types of Needs think Maslow’s hierarchy of needs Biogenic: elements necessary to maintain life (water, air, shelter) Psychogenic: culturally related, as belonging to groups, having status, power, affiliation Motivational Conflicts Valence: a goal can be either positive or negative Approach-approach conflict * choice between two desirable alternatives i. e. go home for holidays to see family or ski with friends Theory of Cognitive Dissonance: when picking between two products and one is selected, inherently you’ll lose on the benefits of the other and gain the negatives of the one chosen.
People will start to rationalize their purchase, as a marketer, you can aid this conflict by bundling several benefits in your communications to help Approach-avoidance conflict * desire a goal but wish to avoid it as well i.
e. want a goose to look cool, don’t want to be labeled Canada douche, bag of chips * marketing implication: overcome guilt by convincing luxury is worth it, remove the negative aspects (fake fur) Avoidance-avoidance conflict * choice between two undesirable alternatives i. e. throw + money at old car vs. buying a new one marketing implication: help them realize the unforeseen options of one option Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Consumer Involvement Involvement: a person’s perceived relevance of the object based on their inherent needs, values and interests. object = brand, product, advertisement or purchase situation Level of Involvement: * can range from simple processing to elaboration (info is related to pre-existing knowledge systems) * a continuum * low end = inertia (decisions = habit because consumer lacks motivation to consider alt) * high end will find passionate intensity for people objects that carry great meaning Flow state: when consumers are truly involved with a product, ad, or website Characterized by: * sense of playfulness * feeling of control * concentration/highly focused attention * mental enjoyment of activity for its own sake * distorted sense of time * match between challenge at hand and one’s skills * Another view is the type of involvement: cognitive or affective (rational/emotional) Cult products Cult Products: commands fierce loyalty, devotion and worship by consumers who are highly involved with brand i.
e. Apple fanboys The Many Faces of Involvement
Product involvement Product Involvement: a consumer’s level of interest in a particular product. It can increase by having consumers involved in designing/personalizing. Mass customization: customization on mass production prices i. e.
t-shirts, Dell computers Message-response involvement Message-Response Involvement: level of interest within a medium of communication i. e. tv = low, print ad = higher (can pause and reflect) Tactic: spectacles or performances, where message is also entertainment Marketing performances: turn public places into advertising stages, such as flash mobs. x. Sony BMG hired a group of passengers to burst into Thriller dance to promote MJ’s 25th anniversary of Thriller album Interactive mobile marketing: participation in real-time promotional campaigns through cell phones Purchase situation involvement Purchase Situation Involvement: differences that may occur when buying the same object in different contexts i.
e. when trying to impress someone you may buy a nice brand to reflect good taste, but if buying for your hated cousin, you may buy something shit because you don’t care Values
Values: a belief that some condition is preferable to its opposite. a function of individual, social and cultural forces Core Values Value System: a culture’s ranking of universal values, such as health, wisdom, or world peace Socialization Agents: institutions/people that teach us beliefs, like parents, teachers or friends Enculturation: process of learning beliefs and behaviors endorsed by one’s own culture Acculturation: learning of another’s culture How Values Link to Consumer Behaviour * Cultural values (i. e. security or happiness) * Consumption-specific values (i.
. convenient shopping or prompt service) * Product-specfic values (i. e. ease of use or durability) Hofstede’s cultural dimensions Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions: scores a country based on its standing of 5 dimensions so users can compare/contrast values * Power distance – extent of expectations and acceptance of unequal power distribution by less powerful members of organizations/institutions (like a family) * individualism – degree to which an individuals are integrated into groups * masculinity – distribution of roles between genders uncertainty avoidance – society’s tolerance with uncertainty & ambiguity * long-term orientation – values of; long term = thrift/perseverance; short term = tradition, fulfilling social obligations, protecting one’s “face” The Rokeach value survey Rokeach Value Suvery: set of terminal values (end states) and instrumental values (actions required to achieve terminal values) i. e. American’s love for freedom (freedom to bear arms, expression, etc.
due in large to history of wars for freedom, Canadians love equality The list of values (LOV) scale List of Values (LOV) Scale: developed to isolate values w/ more direct-marketing applications. Identifies nine consumer segments based on values The means-end chain model Means-End Chain Model: products are valued as a means to an end (they have abstract value beyond its bare product state) Laddering: consumers “climb” a ladder of abstraction that connects functional product attributes to desired end states i. . diamond ring for wedding = size of paycheque = size of love = size of self-worth Means-End Conceptualization of the Components of Advertising Strategy (MECCAS): 1st map relationship of product to terminal values, then employ: * message elements – specific attributes/features to be depicted * consumer benefits – + consequences of usage of product * executional framework – overall style/tone of ad leverage point – the way message will link terminal value with features * driving force – end value upon which advertising focuses on Syndicated Surveys Syndicated Surveys: large-scale, syndicated surveys to track changes in values Voluntary Simplifiers: believe once basic material needs are met, + income adds no value Conscientious consumerism: a new core value? Conscientious Consumerism: a value related directly to consumerism (ex. green) LOHAS: lifestyles of health and sustainability
The carbon footprint and offsets Carbon footprint: measures (in units of carbon dioxide) the impact human activities have on the environment in terms of the amount of greenhouse gases they produce Primary footprint: measure of our direct emissions of CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels Secondary footprint: measure of the indirect emissions of CO2 from the whole life cycle of products we use Materialism: importance of which people attach to worldly possessions Chapter 5: The Self
Perspectives on the Self Self-Concept Self-Concept: beliefs a person holds about his attributes and they evaluate these qualities Self-esteem Self-esteem: the positivity of your attitude toward yourself Social Comparison: a process where person evaluates themselves by comparing to others/media images; a basic human motive * High Self Esteem = takes more risks, expect success, *accepted socially, center of attention * Low = avoids risks, embarrassment, failures, or rejection Real & Ideal Selves
Ideal Self: conception of how they’d want themselves to be Actual Self: more realistic appraisal of qualities we do/don’t have * Purchase products in line with our qualities and others to help us attain our ideal self Impression Management: a process of managing how others think of us Multiple Selves Role Identities: different roles, such as husband, father, boss, student, etc.
Virtual identity Virtual Identity: fictional depictions in a real-time, interactive virtual world (WOW) Computer-Mediated Environments (CME): virtual role-playing worlds Symbolic interactionism
Symbolic Interactionism: relations with others play large part in forming “the self” * Who am I in this situation? And what do others think I am? * Pattern behavior on the perceived expectations, self-fulfilling prophecy * By acting the way we assume others expect us to act, we conform to those perceptions^ The looking glass self Looking-Glass Self: imagining the reactions of others towards us * Reflexive evaluation occurs when someone attempts to define the self; “bouncing” signals off others and trying to project the impression they have of us Self-Consciousness High Self-Monitors are more likely to evaluate products in terms of public impressions Consumption and Self-Concept Products that Shape the Self: You are What You Consume Symbolic Self-Completion Theory: predicts that people with incomplete self-definition tend to complete this identity by acquiring and displaying symbols associated with it (i. e. adolescent boys purchase macho products to complete their masculinity) * Prisons remove personal objects to reduce personal identity and create group identity * Burglary victims feel alienation, depression, or feeling “violated”
Self/Product Congruence Self-Image Congruence Models: predicts that products will be chosen if their attributes match some aspect of the self * Ideal self more relevant for highly expressive social products like perfume * Actual self more relevant for everyday, functional products The Extended Self The Extended Self: Props or settings (external objects) considered to be a part of us i. e. my computer is an extension of myself, it represents me 4 levels of the extended self: Individual Level: Personal possessions, such as jewelry, cars, clothing * Family Level: A consumer’s residence and furnishings.
House = symbolic body of family * Community Level: Neighbourhood or town of origin * Group Level: Attachment to social groups, such as landmarks, monuments, sports teams Gender Roles Gender Differences in Socialization Agentic Goals: stresses self-assertion and mastery; pertains mostly to males Communal Goals: affiliation and fostering of harmonious relationships; females * Every society creates a set of expectations of behaviour for men/women.
Starts early with stories * Biological gender =/= sex typed traits, characteristics stereotypically associated with a gender * Masculinity and femininity are NOT biological characteristics; culturally determined Sex-Typed Products: products that take on mascu/feminine attributes Androgyny: mascu/femininity are not opposites (duality); can possess both at the same time * like Korean doods * *guys typically influenced by overall theme of message, girls = specific pieces of info Chapter 6: Personality and Lifestyles Personality Personality: person’s unique psychological makeup + how it consistently influences responses to environment
Freudian Systems Freudian Systems: consists of 3 “systems” Id: entirely oriented toward immediate gratification – “party animal” * Pleasure Principle: behaviour = desire to max pleasure and avoid pain Superego: counterweight to id. The “conscience”, internalizes societal norms and prevents id from seeking selfish gratification Ego: system that mediates id and superego * Finds ways to gratify id that is socially acceptable (reality principle); unconscious * Marketing Implication: consumers cannot tell us motivation as it may be unconscious * Product represents socially unacceptable, true id goal.
By purchasing, live vicariously through it Trait Theory Trait Theory: identifiable characteristics that define a person * consumption differences between idiocentrics (individualist) vs. allocentrics (collective) * Contentment: idios are more satisfied with the way their life is * Health Consciousness: Allos avoid poor food choices * Food Preparation: Allo’s spend more time preparing meals * Workacholics: Idios more likely to say they work harder and stay later for work * Travel and Entertainment: idios interested in other cultures, travelling, movies, libraries Problems with trait theory in consumer research Scales for measurement are not valid/reliable * Tests are developed for specific populations then adopted to general population ultimately how individual decisions add up to society’s well-being * Consumer Confidence: optimism/pessimism of economic future Social Class: * Standing in society * Pecking Order: social hierarchy determines in ranking, the access to resources such as, education, housing, and consumer goods * People belonging in the same class share roughly the same occupations, lead similar lifestyles by virtue of income, tend to socialize and share many ideas and values regarding lifestyle. Homogamy: tendency to marry someone of same social standing * Social Stratification: process in which social system distributes scarce resources unequally amongst social classes in a relatively permanent manner * Reputation Economy: “currency” people earn when they post comments online and others recommend their comments * Ascribed Status vs Achieved Status: those who were born with it vs.
those who earned it Blurring Social Classes * increasingly harder to link brands/stores to specific class, i. e. affordable luxuries”, university kids who splurge on clothing (Burberry, etc. ) but eat KD * Mass Class: those with purchasing power that allows for high quality goods, except for big ticket items such as cars, American colleges, luxury homes (Zara, H&M) Components of Social Class * Occupational Prestige: worth derived from what they do for a living (i.
e. white vs blue collar) * Income * Social Class better predictor of purchases with symbolic aspects and low-moderate price * Income better predictor of major expenditures with no symbolic meaning (major appliances)
How Social Class affects purchase decisions * Attitudes towards luxury (consumers): * Functional: buys things that will last/enduring value. Conducts extensive research & logical decision making * Reward: typically younger than first group and older than 3rd group. A way of saying “I’ve made it” * Indulgence: smallest group. owning luxury items is to be lavish and self-indulgent – to express individuality and make others take notice.
ery emotional approach * Old Money: old money families distinguish themselves NOT ON WEALTH, but on history of public service, philanthropy, and tangible markers (Ivey Business School) * Taste Cultures: differentiates in terms of aesthetic and intellectual preferences * it’s like saying upper/upper-middle likely to go to museums, middle like camping and fishing. It’s like saying that you’re less sophisticated * Codes: ways consumers interpret and express meanings restricted codes: focus on content of objects, not relationships amongst objects * elaborated: more complex and depend on a more sophisticated worldview (p. 417) * Pierre Bourdieu concluded that taste is a status-marking force, or habitus * social capital: organizational affiliations and networks (connections) * cultural capital: set of distinctive and socially rare tastes and practices. basically the culture of the rich that allows them to stay within the upper echelon of society because they keep passing it down
Status Symbols * we purchase products not to enjoy them, but to let others know that we can afford them * isn’t the same across all cultures. Bulky phones are more “luxurious” than slim sleek phones compared with the Western world. * invidious distinction: to inspire envy in others through display of wealth/power (reason for consumption) * conspicuous consumption: people’s desire to provide prominent, visible evidence of their ability to afford luxury goods * parody consumption: to seek status by mocking it and avoiding status symbols.
i. e. frayed edges of denim clothing, wins with irreverent labels Chapter 14: Age Subcultures Subculture: group whose members share beliefs and common experiences that set them apart from others Microculture: a subset of subculture, which is based on lifestyle or aesthetic preference Age and Consumer Identity * era in which we grow up bonds us will millions of others from the same age * identity may become stronger when the beliefs/goals of one age group conflict with another * Age cohort: group of consumers of same/approximate age who have gone through similar exp. Marketers often target products to specific age cohort b/c possessions play key role in identity with others of a certain age and express priorities/needs of each life stage * Multigenerational Marketing Strategy: use imagery that appeals ;1 generation Chapter 15: Canadian Identity and Ethnic Subcultures Ethnic Subculture: self-perpetuating group of consumers who share common cultural/genetic ties recognized by both its members and others as a distinct category High-Context Culture: group members tend to be tightly knit, infer meanings that go beyond spoken word. x. symbols, gestures carry much more weight than spoken word (Koreans respecting elders) Low-Context culture: more literal.
like Caucasians as opposed to minorities De-ethnicitization: occurs when detaches from roots (original ethnicity) and appeals to other subcultures Ethnicity as a moving target * becoming harder to target distinct ethnic groups: greater immigration and interracial marriage and cultural blending * Ethnic Stereotypes: you know what it is. Negative feedback in recent use Level of Acculturation: Acculturation: process of movement and adaptation to a cultural environment from another * Movement: factors that motivate people to uproot themselves physically from one to another place * Translation: to master a set of rules for operating in a new environment (fashion, social meaning) * Adaptation: process of forming new consumption patterns * assimilation: adopting new products, habits, and values identified with mainsteam culture * maintenance: retaining practices associated with culture of origin * resistance: resent pressure to submerge their cultural identities and take on new roles * Raymond Ng’s five phases of adjustment * Honeymoon: immigrant marvels at wonders of new environment * Culture Shock: reality of situation sets in * Superficial Adjustment: immigrant forays into new culture/manages day2day life * Stress and Depression: immigrant disparages aspects of new life: lack of high paying job opportunities, taxes, cold and wet weather. Intergenerational conflicts arise, often over career choices of kids * Integration: immigrant moves through society with degree of ase comparable to that of native born * Progressive Learning Model: assumes that people gradually learn new culture as they increasingly come in contact with it. Therefore, mix original culture with host culture Chapter 16: Cultural Influences on Consumer Behaviour UNDERSTANDING CULTURE: * culture – abstract ideas and material objects/services making up a society’s personality – determines the overall priorities s/he attaches to different activities and products – mandates the success/failure of specific products/services – a product that provides benefits consistent with those desired by members of a culture at a particular time has a much better chance of attaining acceptance in the marketplace * aspects of culture: ecology – the way in which a system is adapted to its habitat; this area is shaped by the technology used to obtain and distribute resources * social structure – the way in which orderly social life is maintained; includes dominant domestic and political groups * ideology – mental characteristics of a people and the way in which they relate to their environment and social groups; revolves around the belief that members of a society possess a common worldview and share ethos (a set of moral principles and aesthetic principles) Culture: is a concept to understand consumer behavior as society’s personality. It includes: Abstract ideas, Material objects and service. * Culture is the lens through which people view product.
The relationship between consumer behavior and culture is two way street. Products relates to priorities of a culture being accepted more by consumer * Product, successfully produced by culture, provide a window onto the dominant cultural ideal of that period Culture system contains 3 functional areas 1. Ecology: which a system adapted to its habitat. 2. Social structure: the way which orderly social life is maintained.
3. Ideology: the mental characters of a people relate to their environment and social groups. Different dimensions on culture 1. Power distance – how much power 2. Uncertainly avoidance – degree people feel threatened 3. Masculinity and femininity – gender roles 4.
Individualism – individual vs group
Norms – rules dictating what is right or wrong, acceptable or unacceptable * Enacted norms – explicitly decided upon * Crescive norms – imbedded in a culture and discovered through interaction with other members of that culture * Custom – norm handed down from the past that controls basic behavior, such as division of labour in a household, or practice of particular ceremonies * When to eat * More – custom with strong moral overtone, often involves a taboo, or forbidden behavior, such as incest or cannibalism * What kind of food is permissible to eat * Convention – norms regarding the conduct of everyday life, correct way to furnish house, wear clothes, host a dinner party * how to eat the food Myth and rituals
Myth: is a story containing symbolic elements that express the shared emotions and ideals of a culture * Often features some kind of conflict between two opposing forces, outcome serves as a moral guide for people * Provides guidelines about their world Functions of myths * Metaphysical – explain origin of existence * Cosmological – emphasize all components of the universe are part of a single picture * Sociological – maintain social order by authorizing a social code to be followed by members of a culture * Psychological – provides models for personal conduct Monomyth – common to many cultures Ritual: is a set of multiple, symbolic behaviors that occur in a fixed sequence and tend to be repeated periodically Ritual Artifacts: items used n the performance of rituals – to consumers, ex. birthday candles, diamond rings Types of ritual * Grooming rituals – purpose ranging from inspiring confidence before confronting the world to cleansing the body of dirt and other profane materials * Gift giving rituals – promotion of appropriate gifts for every conceivable holiday and occasion, three stages * 1. During gestation, giver is motivated by an event to procure a gift * 2. Presentation or process of gift exchange * 3. Reformulation, bonds between the giver and receiver are adjust to reflect the new relationship that emerges * Re-gifting is unwanted * Holiday rituals Rites of passage: a special times marked by a change in social status, three phases * Separation – detaches from original group or status, ex. leave home for school * Liminality – person literally in between status, ex.
arrival on campus tries to figure out what is happing in O week * Aggregation – when person re-enters society after the rite of passage is complete, ex. returns home for summer vacation as university “veteran” Sacred and Profane Consumption Sacred Consumption – involves objects and events that are set apart from normal activities and are treated with degree of respect awe Profane Consumption – Involves consumer objects are ordinary, everyday things we do Domains of Sacred Consumption Scared places – set apart by society because they have religious or mystical significant, or because commemorate some aspect of a country’s heritage * Home can be sacred place, represents a crucial distinction between the harsh, external world and consumers “inner space” * People – idolized and set apart from the masses, ex. celebrities * Event – world sports is sacred and almost assumes the status of religion, ex. Olympics * Souvenirs are big industry Desacralization: occurs when a scared item or symbol is removed from its special place becoming profane as a result * Can be religion itself, the crosses are in mainstream fashion, Christmas is more materialistic Sacralisation: When events, people take on scared meaning to a culture or a group within a culture, ex. Stanley cup, or collections Chapter 17: The Creation and Diffusion of Culture
Cultural Selection – how the culture in which we live creates the meanings for everyday products and how these meanings move through a society to consumers * Linking back to Chapter 1, people buy things for what they mean, not what they do * Though it seems like we have so many choices, our options only represent a small portion * Selection of certain alternatives is the culmination of a complex filtration process resembling a funnel * Cultural selection – many possibilities initially compete for adoption slowly winnowed down to make their way along the path from conception to consumption * Our tastes and product preferences not formed in a vacuum, * Choices are driven by images presented in mass media, observations of those around us, our desire to live in a fantasy world created by marketers * Constantly evolving and changing – what is hot one year may be out the next * Characteristics of fashion and popular culture include: * Styles often rooted in and reflect deeper societal trends, ex.
olitics and social conditions * Styles usually originate as an interplay between deliberate inventions of designers and businesspeople and the spontaneous actions of ordinary people, help fuel fire by encouraging mass distribution (those anticipate what consumers want succeed) * Trends can travel widely, often between countries and continents * Influential people in the media play a large role in deciding which trends succeed * Style begins as a risky or unique statement by a relatively small group of people spread to others increase aware of the style feel confident about trying it * Most styles eventually wear out, as people continually search for new ways to express themselves and markers try to keep up * Cultural selection process never stops, when styles become obsolete others wait to replace them in popular culture Culture Production Systems – set of individuals and organizations responsible for creating and marketing a cultural product * No single designer, company or ad agency is totally responsible for creating popular culture, may different factors * Important factors include the number and diversity of competing systems and the among of innovation vs. conformity that is encouraged Components of a CPS – has three major subsystems: 1. Creative subsystem – responsible for generating new symbols or products ex. singer 2.
Managerial subsystem – responsible for selecting, making tangible , mass producing, and managing the distribution of new symbols or products, ex.
producer/distributor of CD 3. Communication subsystem – responsible for giving meaning to new products and providing them with symbolic sets of attributes that are communicated to consumers, ex. advertising agencies hired to promote music Cultural Gatekeepers – judges or “testmakers” influence the product that are eventually offered to consumers * Filter the overflow of information and material intended for consumers, ex. movie, restaurant, car reviewers * Collectively called – throughput sector Changed from top-down to bottom up, companies listen to everyday consumers; due to factors such as social networking * We now live in consumerspace – where customers act as partners with companies to decide what the marketplace will offer * Xerox uses voice of the consumer data in its R&D – feedback from end customers well before it put new product on the market * First make prototype, then gets feed back “customer-led innovation” High Culture and Popular Culture * Culture production systems create many diverse kinds of products, basic distinctions through characteristics * Art Product – viewed primarily as an object of aesthetic contemplation without an functional value * Original, subtle, and valuable elite of society * Craft Product – admired because of beauty with which it performs some function, ex.
ceramic ashtray * Permits rapid production High Art vs. Low Art (high and low culture) * We assume rich have culture and poor do not * Blended together in interesting ways, ex. fine art at Costco * We appreciate advertising as an art form The arts are big business, marketers often incorporate high art to promote products Cultural Formulae * Mass culture churns out products specifically for a mass market * Aiming to please average tastes of undifferentiated audience * Predictable because they follow certain patterns * Usually a formula followed because roles and props occur consistently * This means that we “recycle” images * Creative subsystem members reach back through time and remix the past, ex. Gilligan’s Island Brandy Bunch Reality Engineering – elements of popular culture are used and converted to promotional strategies * Many consumer environments have images/characters spawned by marketing campaigns or are retreads, ex.
Real like Kwik-E-Mart * Hard to tell what is real – “new vintage” (used jeans) * Cultivation hypothesis – media’s ability to distort consumers’ perception of reality * Media tend to exaggerate or distort the frequency of behaviours such as drinking and smoking Product Placement – inserting real products in movies, ex. E.
T and Reese’s pieces Advergaming – online games merge with interactive advertisements that let companies target specific type of customers Plinking – embedding a product or service link in video (you-tube) The Diffusion of Innovations – process whereby a new product, service, or idea spreads through a population * New products and styles constantly enter the market * Occur both consumer and industrial setting Form of clothing, new manufacturing technique or novel way to deliver a service * If innovation is successful it spreads through the population * First bought or used by few people more and more consumers decided until everyone has bought or tried innovation Adopting Innovations * Resembles decision-making sequence, moves stages of: Awareness, information search, evaluation, trial, and adoption * Importance depends on how much is already known about product as a well as cultural factors that affect people’s willingness to try new things * Not al people adopt an innovation at the same rate (some never do) * Consumers can be placed into categories based on likelihood of adopting to innovation can be related to product-life-cycle) * 1/6th of population very quick to adopt new products (innovators and early adopters), 1/6th are very slow (laggards) * 2/3rds are somewhere in the middle majority represent mainstream public * interested in new things, but do not want them to be too new, wait for technology to improve, or price to fall * Innovators – brave souls, first to try new offering (maybe innovator on one thing, laggard in another) ex. fashion, vs. recording technology, highly educated, and high income levels, and socially active * Early Adopters – share similar characteristics, but difference is – degree of concern for social acceptance (20% of pop. ), use magazines to learn about new trends
Types of Innovations – can be categorized in terms of degree to which they demand change in behavior from adopters, three categories: * Continuous innovation – modification of existing product, set one brand apart from competitors, most products this type, evolutionary * Small changes made to position, to add line extensions, or merely alleviate consumer boredom * Dynamically continuous innovation – more pronounced change in an existing product, ex. touch-tone telephones, creating some behavior change * Discontinuous innovation – major change in the way we live, ex.
airplane, car, TV Prerequisites for Successful Adoption – several factors required for new product to succeed * Compatibility – compatible with consumers’ lifestyle * Trialability – more likely to adopt of they can experiment with it prior to commitment, reduce risk, ex. ree “trial-size” samples * Complexity – should be low in complexity, easier to understand chosen over competitor * Observability – innovation easily observable, more likely to spread, ex. visible fanny packs * Relative Advantage – most important, should offer relative advantage over alternatives The Fashion System – consist of all those people and organization involved in creating symbolic meaning and transferring those meanings to cultural goods * Fashion affects all type of cultural phenomena, including music, art, architecture, and even science * Fashion as code/language for meanings * Terms * Fashion – process of social diffusion by which a new style is adopted by some group(s) of consumers * A fashion(style) – particular ombination of attributes * In fashion – this combination is currently positively evaluated by some reference group Cultural Categories – How we characterize the world reflects the meaning we impart to products * Culture makes distinctions between different times, leisure and work, and gender * Dominant aspects/themes of culture are reflected in design/marketing of items * Costumes of politicians, rock/movie stars * 1950s/60s: “space-age” mastery * Fashion colours for each season * Creative subsystems attempt to anticipate the tastes of the buying public * Collective selection – process in which certain symbolic alternatives are chosen over others, ex. New Wave, Danish Modern, The Western Look, Nouvelle Cuisine
Behavioural Science Perspectives on Fashion – major approaches to fashion * Psychological Models of Fashion – explain why people are motivated to be in fashion * Includes conformity, variety seeking, personal creativity, and sexual attention, ex. consumers seek need for uniqueness, want to be different, but not too different (conform to basic guidelines but improvise and make personal statements) * Also early theory of fashion “shifting erogenous zones accounted for fashion change, different zones become the object of interest because they reflect societal trends (pg. 536) * Economic models of Fashion – terms of supply and demand * Items limited supply have high value, while readily available are less desired (rare items command respect and prestige) * Ex.
wear expensive clothing to show prosperity Though in contrast – parody display 0 which they deliberately adopt low-status or inexpensive products * Prestige-exclusivity effect – high prices create high demand * Snob effect – lower prices actually reduce demand (if its cheap it isn’t good) * Sociological Models of Fashion – focuses on initial adoption of fashion by subculture and is diffusion into society as a whole * Ex. Goth culture into mainstream or hip – hop * * Trickle-down theory – important! * States that there are two conflicting forces that drive fashion change 1. Subordinate groups try to adopt the status symbols of groups above them – try to climb the later of social mobility (thus dominant styles originate with upper classes and trickle down) 2. Those superordinate groups are constantly looking below them on the ladder to ensure they are not imitated, they adopt newer fashions * Self-perpetuating cycle of change of fashion Harder in modern times because of new developments in mass culture * Advance in technology to make people instantly aware of latest styles and trends * Each social group has own fashion innovator, trickle-across effect – fashion diffused horizontally among members of same social group * Current fashions often originate with lower classes, trickle up- less concern with maintaining status quo, more free time to innovate, take risks A “Medical” Model of Fashion – why do style diffuse through the population so quickly? * Meme theory explains the idea, meme – idea/product that enters the consciousness of people over time – includes tunes, catchphrases, or styles like Hush Puppies * Memes spread among consumers in a geometric progression, like a virus, starts off small and steadily infects increasing number of people until it becomes epidemic * Leap from brain to brain via processes of imitation To survive must be distinctive and memorable * Tipping point – when process reaches the moment of critical mass Cycles of Fashion Adoption * Fashion cycle – much similar to product life cycle, progresses through birth to death * Fashion acceptance cycle * Introduction stage – a song is listened to by smaller number of music innovators * Acceptance stage – song enjoys increased social visibility and accepted by large segments of population, wide airplay on Top 40 Stations * Regression stage – item reaches a state of social saturation, becomes overused, sinks into decline and new songs take its place * Different classes of fashions can be identified by considering relative ength of the fashion acceptance cycle * Classic – fashion with extremely long acceptance cycle, low risk * Fad – very short-lived fashion, usually adopted by relatively few people, trickles across common subculture, rarely breaks out of specific group, ex. hula hoops, snap bracelets, and pet rocks, or streaking in mid -1970s * Non-utilitarian – not performed any meaningful function * Adopted on impulse * Diffused rapidly, gains quick acceptance, and is short-lived Fad or Trend * Guidelines for long-term trends: * Fits with basic lifestyle changes * A real benefit should be evident * Can be personalized * Not a side effect or a carryover effect * Important market segments adopt change