Consumer Psychology (PSY - 514)
CHAPTER 5: INDIVIDUAL DETERMINANTS OF CONSUMER BEHAVIOR
· Attitude Research
· Characteristics of Research
Attitude is a learned predisposition to behave in a constantly favorable or unfavorable way with respect to
As consumers each of us has a vast number of attitudes towards products, services, advertisements, internet, etc...
Whenever we are asked: Whether we like cable TV or Direct TV, Whether we like or dislike a product. We are
being asked to express our attitudes.
Within the domain of Consumer Behavior, an appreciation of prevailing attitudes has considerable merit for
Consumer Psychology. For example there has been rapid growth in the sales of natural ingredient bath, and other
cosmetic products through out the world. This trend is linked to current popular "attitude". Things natural are
good and things synthetic are bad. In realty this evidence is not based on systematic evidence that natural products
are any safer or better for consumers. To get to the heart of what is driving the Consumer Behavior attitude
research has been used to study a wide range of topics.
Attitude Research is frequently undertaken to determine whether consumers will accept a proposed new product
idea, to gauge why a firm's target audience has not reacted more favorably to its new product advertisement or to
understand how target consumers are likely to react to a proposed change in the firm's packaging design. All
marketing activities are related to the task of impacting the Consumer's Attitudes.
Characteristics of Attitudes
Following characteristics explain the nature of attitudes
The attitude object
Attitude are learned predisposition
Attitudes have consistency
Attitudes occur within a situation
1. Attitude Object
The word object in our consumer-oriented definition should be interpreted broadly to include specific
consumption or marketing related concepts such as product, product category, brand, service, possessions,
product use, causes or issues, people or advertisements. In conducting attitude research we tend to be object
specific. For example if we are interested in learning about three popularly priced brands of watches our "object"
If we are examining attitudes towards major brands of computer printers, our "object" of study may include HP,
Dell, Brother, and Epson
2. Attitudes are learned predisposition
Consumer Psychology (PSY - 514)
There is general agreement that attitudes are learned. This means attitudes relevant to purchase behavior are
formed as a result of direct experience with product, word of mouth, information acquired from others, exposure
to mass media advertising, the internet and various forms of direct marketing. It is important to remember that
attitudes result from behavior they are not synonymous to behavior, instead they reflect either favorable or
unfavorable evaluation of the attitude object
3. Attitudes have consistency
Attitudes are relatively consistent with the behavior they reflect; however, attitudes are not necessarily permanent.
Attitudes do change
4. Attitudes occur within a situation
Situation means events or circumstances that at a particular point in time influence the relationship between
attitude and behavior. A specific situation may cause individuals to behave in a way seemingly inconsistent with
their behavior. For example if Ali purchases a different brand of toothpaste every time he runs low. Although his
brand switching behavior may seem to reflect a negative attitude or dissatisfaction with the brands he tries, it
actually may be influenced by a specific situation which in this case is Ali's wish to economize.
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