Chapter 11: Situational Influences Consumer Behavior - A Framework John C. Mowen Michael S. Minor
Key Concepts Types of situational influences Influence of physical surroundings Categories of gift-giving situations Time differences across cultures
Types of antecedent states
The Environment and the Exchange Process Cultural Environment Economic Environment Subcultural Environment Regulatory Environment Group/ family Processes Situational Influencers Individual Processes Buying Unit Exchange Process Marketer
Consumer Situations . . . consist of temporary environmental factors that form the context within which a consumer activity occurs at a particular place and time. Involve the time and place in which a consumer activity takes place Explain why the action takes place
Influence consumer behavior
Table 11-1: Belk’s Situational Elements
Physical Surroundings . . .
. . .are the concrete physical and spatial aspects of the environment that encompass a consumer activity.
Effects of Music on Shoppers In a supermarket store study sales increased daily by 38% when slower music was played.
A restaurant study found when slow music was played, liquor sales increased.
Effects of Music continued Playing peppy music while on hold or waiting in line doesn’t make time pass more quickly.
Louder music increases “pace of events” perception but raises estimates of time durations.
The Effects of Crowding on Consumers Density - how closely packed people are (i.e., the physical arrangements of people in a space).
Crowding - the unpleasant feelings that people experience when they perceive that densities are too high and that their control of the situation has been reduced to unacceptable levels.
High - and Low-density... High-density situations may be beneficial - More perceived control in bar study, less in bank study. In “fun” situations, density enhances pleasure. There is usually an optimal level of density.
Other elements (time, convenience) as important for shopping behavior.
Consumer Crowd Behavior In some circumstances consumers behave like hysterical crowds Large groups may cause high physiological arousal among each of the members The high arousal results in the tendency of each member of the crowd to act on a dominant idea or tendency
Each person in a crowd becomes inconspicuous and individual responsibility is lost.
Store Location . . . . . . influences consumers from several perspectives. Consumers have “cognitive maps” of a city’s geography that may not match the actual locations of retail stores.
Image transference exists: The image of anchor stores affects that of smaller stores in the same shopping center.
Store Layout . . .
. . . is the physical organization of a store that creates specific traffic patterns, assists retailers in the presentation of merchandise, and helps create a particular atmosphere.
Atmospherics . . .
. . . refers to how managers manipulate the design of the building, interior space, layout of aisles, texture of carpets and walls, scents, colors, shapes, and sounds experienced by customers to achieve a certain effect.
Atmospherics and Shopping Behavior Influences Influences Atmosphere Behavior Layout Sounds Smells Texture... Pleasure/ displeasure Arousal/ Boredom Time in Store Affiliation Buying
Olfactory Cues... Shoppers perceive higher quality goods in scented stores. Odors should be consistent with store offerings.
These cues are expensive to maintain.
Effects of Spatial Arrangements… Space modifies/shapes behavior Retail store space affects consumers Retail stores affect attitudes, images
Stores can create desired consumer reactions
Social Surroundings . . .
. . . deals with the effects of other people on a consumer in a consumption situation.
The Task Definition . . . . . . the situational reasons for buying or consuming a product or service at a particular time and place.
Usage situations form the context in which a product is used and influence the product characteristics sought by a consumer.
Occasion-Based Marketing Opportunities Sometimes a product is locked into one usage situation, limiting market potential.
Consumers may come to consider the product inappropriate for all other situations.
Gift-Giving Motivations Voluntary Obligatory Low High Altruism Reciprocity creation Ritual obligation Love, friendship Gift Type
Gift Behavior and Gender... Women start shopping earlier for Christmas (October vs. November) Spend more time shopping/gift (2.4 vs. 2.1 hours) Are more successful (fewer of their gifts are exchanged)
But men spend 50% more/gift.
Self-Gifts... Rewarding an accomplishment, therapy for disappointment
Baseball glove/Front-end loader
Time... Individual differences in conception…
Time as a situational variable
Time: Individual Differences... Obligatory Discretionary
People Can Use Time in Four Different Ways :
Individual Time Differences Are Influenced by Culture... Linear Separable. There is a past, present, future. The future is expected to be better: the idea of “progress”. Activities are a means to an end. Circular Traditional. The future is like the present. Do today only what has to be done today. Time and money aren’t related.
Procedural Traditional. Task Orientation. Meetings take as long as necessary.
Time as a Product Many Purchases Are Made to Buy Time The “time-buying consumer” is a consumer who engages in buying time through these products Time-saving qualities are a key promotional idea
Time can act as a product attribute
“Perception Management,” Time, and Lines In 1998, 70 Northern California MacDonald’s restaurants tried multiple lines vs. one line. The single, serpentine line is most popular - Multiple lines actually move people faster
But jumping from line to line creates stress.
Time as a Situational Variable How much time a consumer has available to do a task influences the buying strategy used to select and purchase the product.
With limited time, there is less information search.
Antecedent States . . . . . . are the temporary physiological and mood states that a consumer brings to a consumption situation. Physiological State: Hunger.
Mood State: Happy feelings.
Antecedent States . . . . . . Can lead to problem recognition. . . . Can change the “feeling” component of hierarchy of effects (Ch. 8) . . . Mood states influence behavior, e.g. shopping to alleviate loneliness.
Usage Situation, Person, and Product Interactions The Buying Act Results From Interactions That Occur Among : Characteristics of the buying unit/person
The product or service being offered
Managerial Implications Positioning. Situational variables offer multiple opportunities for positioning. Research. May indicate which situations present opportunities for new products. Marketing Mix. Firms may be able to present time-saving attributes as a tradeoff for a higher price.
Segmentation. An increase in the female work force presents opportunities to market to the segment of males doing more of their own shopping.
Situation-by-Product Interaction Tennis Match Party Mixer High Low Gatorade Ginger Ale