Chapter 3: Consumer Behavior: How People Make Buying Decisions
3.3 Discussion Questions and Activities
- Why do people in different cultures buy different products? Discuss with your class the types of vehicles you have seen other countries. Why are they different, and how do they better meet buyers’ needs in those countries? What types of cars do you think should be sold in the United States today?
- What is your opinion of companies like Google that gather information about your browsing patterns? What advantages and drawbacks does this pose for consumers? If you were a business owner, what kinds of information would you gather on your customers and how would you use it?
- Are there any areas in which you consider yourself an opinion leader? What are they? How are companies getting information about opinion leaders?
- What purchasing decisions have you been able to influence in your family and why? Is marketing to children a good idea? If not, what if one of your competitors were successful in doing so? Would it change your opinion?
- Name some products that have led to postpurchase dissonance on your part. Then categorize them as high- or low-involvement products.
- Describe the decision process for impulse purchases at the retail level. Would they be classified as high- or low-involvement purchases?
- How do you think the manufacturers of products sold through infomercials reduce postpurchase dissonance?
- Explain the relationship between extensive, limited, and routine decision making relative to high- and low-involvement decisions. Identify examples of extensive, limited, and routine decision making based on your personal consumption behavior.
- Why is understanding consumer behavior so important for companies? Think of examples where you do not think companies understood their consumers.
- Go to Osprey Stories, the blog site for Osprey Packs. Does the blog make you more or less inclined to purchase an Osprey backpack?
- Select three advertisements and describe the needs identified by Abraham Maslow that each ad addresses. Find an international version of an advertisement for one of the products. What differences do you detect in the international version of the ad?
- Break up into groups and visit an ethnic part of your town that differs from your own ethnicity(ies). Walk around the neighborhood and its stores. What types of marketing and buying differences do you see? Write a report of your findings.
- Using Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, identify a list of popular advertising slogans that appeal to each of the five levels.
- Identify how McDonald’s targets both users (primarily children) and buyers (parents, grandparents, etc.). Provide specific examples of strategies used by the fast-food marketer to target both groups. Make it a point to incorporate Happy Meals and Mighty Kids Meals into your discussion.