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Discuss the role of socio-cultural influences (e.g. opinion leaders, word of mouth, reference groups, family life cycle, social class, culture and subculture, etc.) on consumer decision—making by referencing the movie The Joneses.

This is the information:

•    LO 4-1 Describe the stages in the consumer purchase decision process.
The consumer purchase decision process consists of five stages. They are problem recognition, information search, alternative evaluation, purchase decision, and postpurchase behavior. Problem recognition is perceiving a difference between a person’s ideal and actual situation big enough to trigger a decision. Information search involves remembering previous purchase experiences (internal search) and external search behavior such as seeking information from other sources. Alternative evaluation clarifies the problem for the consumer by (a) suggesting the evaluative criteria to use for the purchase, (b) yielding brand names that might meet the criteria, and (c) developing consumer value perceptions. The purchase decision involves the choice of an alternative, including from whom to buy and when to buy. Postpurchase behavior involves the comparison of the chosen alternative with a consumer’s expectations, which leads to satisfaction or dissatisfaction and subsequent purchase behavior.
•    LO 4-2 Distinguish among three variations of the consumer purchase decision process: extended, limited, and routine problem solving.
Consumers don’t always engage in the five-stage purchase decision process. Instead, they skip or minimize one or more stages depending on the level of involvement—the personal, social, and economic significance of the purchase. For high-involvement purchase occasions, each of the five stages of the consumer purchase decision process is used and considerable time and effort are devoted to the search for external information and the identification and evaluation of alternatives. With limited problem solving, consumers typically seek some information or rely on a friend to help them evaluate alternatives. For low-involvement purchase occasions, consumers engage in routine problem solving. They recognize a problem, make a decision, and spend little effort seeking external information and evaluating alternatives.
•    LO 4-3 Identify the major psychological influences on consumer behavior.
Psychology helps marketers understand why and how consumers behave as they do. In particular, psychological concepts such as motivation and personality, perception, learning, values, beliefs and attitudes, and lifestyle are useful for interpreting buying processes. Motivation is the energizing force that stimulates behavior to satisfy a need. Personality refers to a person’s consistent behaviors or responses to recurring situations. Perception is the process by which an individual selects, organizes, and interprets information to create a meaningful picture of the world. Consumers filter information through selective exposure, comprehension, and retention.
Much consumer behavior is learned. Learning refers to those behaviors that result from (a) repeated experience and (b) reasoning. Brand loyalty results from learning. Values, beliefs, and attitudes are also learned and influence how consumers evaluate products, services, and brands. A more general concept is lifestyle. Lifestyle, also called psychographics, combines psychology and demographics and focuses on how people spend their time and resources, what they consider important in their environment, and what they think of themselves and the world around them.
•    LO 4-4 Identify the major sociocultural influences on consumer behavior.
Sociocultural influences, which evolve from a consumer’s formal and informal relationships with other people, also affect consumer behavior. These involve personal influence, reference groups, the family, culture, and subculture. Opinion leadership and word-of-mouth behavior are two major sources of personal influence on consumer behavior. Reference groups are people to whom an individual looks as a basis for self-approval or as a source of personal standards. Family influences on consumer behavior result from three sources: consumer socialization, passage through the family life cycle, and decision making within the family or household. Finally, a person’s culture and subculture have been shown to influence product preferences and buying patterns.

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