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Sample essay topic, essay writing: Buyer Behaviour - 1665 words
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"Working women buy products and services essentially the same as non working women."INTRODUCTIONConsumer behaviour can be defined as "the acts of individuals directly involved in obtaining and using economic and services, including the decision process that precede and determine these acts." (Engel et al, 1968, p 5)Buyer behaviour refers to "the acts of individuals directly involved in the exchange of money for economic goods and services and the decision process that determined these act. "(Engel et al, 1968, p 5). Both consumer and buyer behaviour differ amongst the population as people have different wants and needs. Therefore it is untrue to say that 'working women buy products and services essentially the same as non working women.' No two people are similar as physiological factors, cultural forces, economic considerations, interpersonal relationships, personality, self-concept, and learning are variables that shape goals and influence. (Runyon, K.E. 1980). However consumers can be put into groups if they have similar characteristics, i.e.
if they come from the same social class, background, age, lifestyle. Working and non-working women can be segmented in two separate groups. They are different because of many influences. Some are external due their social environment. What they do with these social stimuli involves a psychological process that differs from each other
These social influences and internal processes may evolve into a decision by the consumer to make a purchase or not. (refer to table 1). (Engel et al, 1968). As both groups possess different characteristics, it is necessary for marketers to understand that they will have different wants and needs.Table 1. Factors influencing behaviourPersonal Psychological Cultural Social Age & Lifestyle Motivation Culture Reference groups Occupation Perception Subculture Family Economic Learning Social class Roles & status Personality Beliefs Self concept AttitudesCulturalEngel et al, (1968) suggest that culture refers to the unique patterns of behaviour and social relations that characterises and distinguishes it from other societies.
Culture is not inherited genetically, it is rather the result of learning. Parents, teachers and schools help indoctrinate each generation into a cultural decision. All cultures will develop from interactions between people in efforts to adjust to one another and their environments. In each society, the culture of that society has a functional purpose. It provides values, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours that facilitate human interaction.
The culture of a working woman will be very different from that of a non working female. Spiro, R.L studies show that Strodtbect, I. L. found cultural differences with respect to the roles of females were related to differences in decision making. This is because both groups will have different beliefs and attitudes due to the way they have been nurtured.Social In a materialist society economic well-being much determines what social class you are in.
If this was the case, than working women would be in a much higher class than non working. However focusing primarily on income fails to recognise the differences in spending of disposal income characteristics of social classes. For example a teacher who earns the same as a truck driver will spend their money in distinctly different ways, the service and goods will not be the same. (Runyon, K.E 1980). Working women may spend their money on socialising i.e. with friends etc.
whereas a non working woman may have children and therefore spend much money on the family Social class differences are variations in life-styles, in values, interpersonal attitudes and self perception. These differences influence consumer behaviour, shopping patterns, and effective communications. Therefore marketing practitioners should understand that social class should be considered as a variable when may be helpful in developing strategies of product differentiation and market segmentation, however this does depend on the type of product itself the patterns of usage and competitive climate in which the product exists in. The working woman will more likely be earning a salary/wage than the non working which then puts them into different social group. Because of the money being earned this again changes the lifestyles, behaviour and attitudes of the non working female.The significance of reference group to buying behaviour varies depending upon the product or service, i.e.
whether it is a necessity or luxury. Reference groups can be segmented into different categories, primary references will include immediate families, close friends and work co-workers. This group is particularly important when are purchases are made that will affect other members of the family such as holidays are booked. Secondary reference groups are those who we have formal contact with such as religious organisations, trade unions. (Runyon, K.E, 1980)Women change as consumers, as they have move through different stages of the lifecycle. The way they buy, and use products, read, watch and listen to media is affected by whom they live with, i.e. if there is a partner, children or single. Harvard Business Review (1978)Familiy background will also affect buying decision.
This includes political views and how education is valued. It can be assumed that a working woman may be more educated than a non working women who may not find education as being a key priority. Adcock, D et al, (1993) suggest that status within these groups are not necessarily automatic, therefore purchase which imply status within this group are likely to be affected by the expected attitude to the product itself. Roles and status - Working women tend to play a greater role in family decision making than non working. Studies by Wolfe, D.M. (1959) claim that the working woman gains power in several ways.
Firstly she has resources such as financial. Intellectual, skill which cannot be developed at home, and secondly she becomes less dependent on her partner (if not single) for the satisfaction of her social and prestige needs.Personal The buying decision often depends on the consumers demographic profile. Any of the below variables can be relevant to an individuals buying decision.Lifestyle & age - A working woman will lead a different lifestyle to a non working woman. Working women will tend to spend money on lunch snacks from shops and eat out in restaurants more than unemployed as working women avoid cooking and this is one reason for eating out. Mintel report (Women 2000 'Women and Shopping: The Role Of Convenience.' (11/01/99) claims that 47% of working women will spend their Friday evening at the public house whereas only 19% of non working women will. (Refer to appendix 1).
11% of women with full time jobs say they visit or order from pizza or pasta restaurant at least once in 2 weeks where as only 4% of non working women do. (see appendix 2)Mintel studies of Women 2000 claim that working women are considerably more likely than those without jobs to be interested in film, book and music review. (WWW.sinatra.com)Bartos, R. (1979) studies show that working wives spend fewer hours per week carrying out house chores, thus many find it necessary to purchase time saving goods and services in order to successfully combine dual productive roles.Working women will more likely possess a driving license and one/two cars whereas the non working female is apt to have shared in the car purchase decision. Economic - Many products will be dependent on perceived discretionary income, i.e. theatre tickets, books, restaurants. (Adcock, D et al, 1993).
2Schaninger, C.M., and Allen, C.T.(1981) investigated the influence of wives occupational status on family consumption patterns. Even after taking into account families of both high/low occupational status, working wives were more likely to own major durables than families of non working wives. 3Vickery. C. (1979) used a Consumer Expenditure Survey data from 1972 to examine the expenditure patterns of married couples, with the husband being between 24-64 with an income between $2,000 and $34,999. The survey was classified in three groups, full time women, women not employed and part-timers (not relevant to this question). Controlling the effects of income and other factors, i.e.
family demographic and characteristics, families with full time wives spent significantly more money on personal care, domestic services such as dry cleaning than non-working women. (Bellante, D., and Foster, A.C. 1984)Bartos, R. (1979) research revealed that working women are more likely have saving accounts, regular checking accounts and credit cards. Personality / Self concept - Women are becoming more introspective and are less identified with stereotypes. Evidence suggests that the working woman executes more considerable independence in decision making for major purchases than a non worker - (housewife).
Sellers of products such as furniture, household appliances should recognise this trend, as it will influence their selling techniques. PsychologicalMintel's research on 'Women and Finance' (27/10/99) suggest that the past few decades has seen dramatic changes occur in the roles than women play in society. There are more women in employment (51% in 1998 44% in 1985). This is due to more women continuing in further education, leading to a growing number in higher paid jobs, achieving more personal disposal income (PDI) With a 24 hour society a move towards greater flexibility is required in the workforce. New work patterns favour women with family commitments with approximately 50% of employed women having flexible working arrangements. With more women in labour forces, the quality of the labour force increases. This reduces the risks of shortages of labour and increases demand for goods and services that will assist to make the working woman's life easier i.e. convenience foods, meals out, more weekend breaks.
This pattern of life varies significantly from the non working woman who has different demands. (WWW.mintel.com)Consumer behaviour can be described as a decision process. The non-working women will have limited resources where they will not be able to buy everything they want, the working woman will have more of an opportunity due to more finance. Both groups will have to make decisions as to which goods and services they will purchase. Even after the product or service has been purchased, other decisions will remain. This is known as the decision process, which can be broken into 5 steps.
Table 2. Decision Process 1. Recognition of a problem requiring a decision2. Search for alternative ways of satisfying the problem requirment3. An evaluation of possible al ...
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