Appealing to Consumers
Marketers study consumer behavior to assist in making decisions about promoting goods and services. By gaining intimate knowledge of consumers’ personalities, habits, and shopping patterns, executives can predict how and what consumers will buy, thus allowing them to display and market their products effectively.
Areas that affect consumer behavior are the following:
- Individual personality
- Reference groups
- Social class
Consumer Individual Personality
Personality is what defines a person as an individual and is difficult to change. Many psychologists believe it is hereditary and, therefore, fairly permanent and stable. Marketers use what they know about a target market’s personality to give a brand a similar personality with which consumers can identify. A variety of research methods identify consumers’ personalities including individual testing, such as surveys and personal interviews. When designing aspects of your displays, include themes, signage, fixtures, mannequins, props, and additional products according to research results.
Family and Reference Groups
An individual identifies with people who share the same values, beliefs, and attitudes. This is referred to as a reference group. A person’s family is usually his or her main reference group. One of the ways marketers target families in their promotions is by showing families in situations that would closely identify with the targets. Designers can target families by creating special Mother’s Day and Father’s Day displays that target the importance of family.
Social class is one of the main characteristics a marketer uses to segment potential buyers. Income level is a major component of social class, but education, hobbies, and consumption habits also identify with job status. Marketers tend to target affluent people for their brands, believing that these people have more disposable income.
Culture is the set of beliefs, values, and customs that guide a group of people. Culture is somewhat difficult to isolate because it is not composed of rules that people follow,
but it is something people grow up with, so it becomes ingrained. You can use visual displays to target a specific culture. If your brand targets a certain culture, be sure to create displays that represent this.
A subculture is a subset of a larger culture. Subcultures are valuable to marketers because they can further segment a market. A person may adhere to a particular culture and may also be identified within a particular subculture. A subculture of females who are in college in the Midwest, is an example of a subculture of the larger culture of American females.
Consumer Behavior Research and the Total Consumption Process
It is important to study consumer behavior to develop a targeted, effective marketing plan before a marketing strategy is determined. Consumer behavior research, however, is useful not just to affect the purchase process but after the purchase as well. Smart marketers also use post-purchase behavior analysis to ascertain how a product or service makes a consumer feel, and they use this information to further refine the marketing process. You want to know the most about your target market because that ultimately defines your brand. Once your brand is defined, it affects every aspect of the visual merchandising (Evans, Jamal, & Foxall, 2009).
Evans, M., Jamal, A., & Foxall, G. (2009). Consumer behaviour. (2nd ed.). West Sussex, UK: John Wiley & Sons Ltd.[DISPLAY_ACURAX_ICONS]