Consumer Buying Behavior
I. MARKETING, RELATIONSHIPS, AND CONSUMER BEHAVIOR
A. Consumer behavior comprises all the consumer decisions and activities connected with choosing, buying, using, and disposing of goods and services.
1. Marketers have to pay attention to consumer behavior that occurs before the purchase and continues after the product has been used.
2. Studying consumer behavior is one of the steps in marketing research and analysis.
3. In addition to basic principles of consumer behavior, marketers also need to study the decisions and actions of real people.
B. Real People, Real Individuals
1. Until recently, the study of consumer behavior was focused on generalized consumer decisions.
a. However, this did not address the behavior of individual consumers.
b. These companies were making marketing decisions without knowing specific details about their customers.
2. Today marketers can collect and analyze data about consumer behavior, one person at a time; this is the relationship approach to marketing.
3. New technology allows marketers to track the specific purchase and usage behavior of their customers.
a. Information is gathered and stored in an internal database.
b. Marketers can explore what each customer wants and tailor the marketing processes to meet those needs.
C. Consumers as Moving Targets
1. Consumer behavior changes over time as people and situations change.
2. To maintain their relationships with customers, marketers have to be alert to changes and adjust their activities accordingly.
3. In addition to individual variations in consumer behavior, marketers need to scan for broad-based changes in consumer behavior.
4. After a product hits the market marketers have to analyze consumer response.
5. A marketer may need to adjust marketing strategy to build more profitable relationships with customers.
II. HOW CONSUMERS BUY
A. Understanding how customers buy helps marketers develop an appropriate marketing strategy.
1. The consumer purchase-decision process consists of five stages.
2. Marketers need to provide what consumers require at every stage.
B. The Need-Recognition Stage
1. Need recognition occurs when a consumer realizes that his or her actual state is not what he or she would like it to be.
2. This recognition is triggered by some stimulus.
3. If the difference between the desired state and the actual state is large enough, the consumer will start the decision-making process.
4. Marketing can trigger need recognition through advertising, product labeling, and demonstrations.
C. The Information-Seeking Stage
1. During the second stage, the customer looks for information about ways of satisfying the recognized need.
a. First, the consumer will use an internal search to recall experiences with products that might satisfy the need.
b. If the need occurs regularly, the internal search will be all that's needed.
2. If more...