Consumer Analysis Behavior
- QUESTION ONE (25 POINTS) AMENDED FROM TAKE HOME EXAM #1
CH 1: PICK ONLY ONE FROM THE FOLLOWING THREE QUESTIONS:
Ch. 1 READING QUESTION #1:
Provide an original definition of consumer behavior. In light of your definition, what do you see as one or more strength of Solomon’s textbook definition (6)? In light of your definition, what would be one or more major aspect of your understanding of consumer behavior that has changed since originally reading his Ch. 1 at the beginning of the semester (please do not say nothing has changed—add something new)? What does Solomon mean in describing consumer behavior as a process (pp. 7-8)? Provide one or more example of consumer behavior as a process from a consumption community you would identify yourself as being a participant (5). How does the consumer’s perspective in this particular community differ from that of the marketer’ (7)? For instance, identify an area where you feel marketers are not reaching your consumption community as well as they could. How might you suggest they change their marketing strategy on one or more pre-purchase, purchase, or post-purchase issue (pp. 7-8)? Explain.
Ch. 1 READING QUESTION #2
In Solomon’s Forbes essay ‘Consumer Behavior in the New Normal’ [posted in Content on Blackboard], he believes that marketers can best predict how consumer behavior will continue to change by looking closely at three basic dimensions: gratification, agency, and stability (GAS). Explain what he means by each of these and provide an original example of each. Given the more than six-month gap since Solomon originally wrote this piece, it is my contention (as I shared with some of you in tutorials) that I would add Technology as a fourth basic dimension and reframe his acronym ‘GAS’ as ‘TAGS.’ This is also due to my conviction that the pandemic has accelerated the growth of targeted marketing by location tracking and real time feedback on consumer behavior through our increasing dependence upon our various devices. On your view, do you think Technology might fit Solomon’s description of the New Normal as a fourth basic dimension to the pandemic and post-pandemic consumer era (or fifth, including yours above)? What might be an example to support (or reject) adding Technology as a fourth basic dimension of the New Normal? I also like the acronym TAGS since it conveys that our Gratification, Agency, and Stability are constantly being tracked, stored, and marketed through the digital ‘tags’ that are devices use to track our digital self. On your view, if digital tracking and tagging continue to increase, how might that influence consumer behavior in the New Normal—either for the better or the worse?
Ch. 1 READING QUESTION #3
Ch. 1, 3b) In both the textbook and in the last line of Solomon’s ‘Consumer Behavior in the New Normal,’ the author claims as his mantra: ‘We don’t buy products because of what they do. We buy them because of what they mean’ (pp. 16-17). What would be two or more textual examples to support this claim of his outside of his ‘New Normal’ article and beyond just chapter one of the Solomon book? Do you think he is right in this claim? Why or why not? What would be the strongest critique one could give to challenge him that we actually buy products more for what they do than for what they mean? How might he reply? Should we be convinced by his reply? Lastly, what would either Veblen or Galloway say on this point?
- QUESTION TWO (25 POINTS) AMENDED FROM TAKE HOME EXAM #2
FROM CH 6: PICK ONLY ONE FROM THE FOLLOWING THREE QUESTIONS:
Ch. 6 READING QUESTION #1
Reread the selection posted to Blackboard from Noble’s Algorithms of Oppression and consider how the narrative concerning Kandis affected one or more of the dimensions of her self-concept as detailed by Solomon (181). Interpret and explain her claim that: ‘I quickly realized the Internet/Yelp told people that I did not exist’ (175). In addition, interpret and explain her additional claim that: ‘You are telling us to use certain keywords, and you don’t even know our language, because you think that ‘Black hair’ means hair color, not texture’ (177). On your view, what might search algorithms like those in Google, Yelp, or Amazon do to affirm the self-concept of persons most marginalized? How might those most immediately affected as stakeholders, business owners, and consumers better participate in shaping the algorithms that directly affect their self-concept?
Ch. 6 READING QUESTION #2
Compare and contrast the real versus the ideal self. List and explain how impression management (183), avoidance self (184), and fantasy appeal (184) each play off of the real versus ideal self as reference points for hitting their target market(s). Provide a practical example from consumer behavior to illustrate each of these concepts (impression management, avoidance self, and fantasy appeal). On your view, how much does this distinction between real versus ideal self ultimately affect purchase considerations? On your view, can we alone best ascertain the distinction between our own real versus ideal self, or do we need other persons to help us make this distinction in our consumer decision making (for example, a parent, friend, or partner that ‘knows you better than yourself’)?
Ch. 6 READING QUESTION #3
Ch. 6, 3b) What does the ‘looking glass self’ mean? Name two or more ways in which feelings about our own ‘looking glass self’ influence what we buy. How is the ‘looking glass self’ illustrated in Noble’s case of the interviews with Kandis and her career as a hair stylist (189)? How has Kandis’s interaction with Yelp shaped her current public self-consciousness (186) compared to what it used to be? How does Kandis’s experience with Yelp redefine her extended self (189)? Lastly, how has Kandis’s career and life work changed as Yelp steered consumers toward her digital self (189), or lack thereof, as opposed to her self-concept prior to the digital age? On your view, given Kandis’s case, do digital marketing ‘middle-man’ services like Yelp represent progress, regress, or some mix of both?
- QUESTION THREE (25 POINTS)—AMENDED FROM TAKE HOME EXAM #3
CH 13: PICK ONLY ONE FROM THE FOLLOWING THREE QUESTIONS:
Ch. 13 READING QUESTION #1
Consider two important changes in the modern family structure (pp. 488-491). For each, find an example of a marketer who seems to be conscious of this change in its product communications, retailing innovations, or other aspects of the marketing mix. For each, offer an example of marketers that have failed to keep up with these developments. In further elaboration of themes related to changes in the family unit (pp. 488-91), what does Turkle mean in saying that adolescents are ‘growing up tethered’ [see the relevant reading posted to Blackboard]? On her analysis, how does ‘growing up tethered’ also bring about changes in the modern family structure? Explain why Turkle feels that ‘growing up tethered’ makes it more difficult for teens to develop a sense of independence from their parents. Are you convinced by Turkle’s claim that ‘growing up tethered’ slows down maturation into adulthood? Explain why or why not.
Ch.13 READING QUESTION #2
What advice would you give to a marketer who wants to appeal to Gen X, Gen Y, or Gen Z (pp. 493-497)? [Only pick one—you do not have to address all three.] What are some major do’s and don’ts? Provide an original example of an innovative marketing strategy that could best meet the unique needs of this target market. In comparison, what advice would you give to a marketer who wants to appeal to the more mature markets comprised of Baby Boomers or Seniors (pp. 497-501)? [Again, only pick one—you do not have to address both.] What are some major do’s and don’ts? Again, Provide an original example of an innovative marketing strategy that could best meet the unique needs of this target market.
Ch. 13, 3c) READING QUESTION #3
Many parents worry about the time their kids spend online, but this activity may actually be good for them. A study by the MacArthur Foundation claims that child and adolescent online surfers gain valuable skills to prepare them for the future. On your best estimation, what might be two or more of these digital skills that better prepare adolescents for the future? This study also finds that concerns about online predators are overblown; most kids and adolescents socialize with friends they know from other situations like school or camp. On your own view, are concerns about excessive web surfing by children unjustified? Is this matter different when considering teens and adolescents? Briefly explain. How about adults? On your view, do they spend too much time online or does online surfing also provide adults with valuable life skills? Provide one or more example. In comparison, based on Turkle’s selection from her chapter on ‘Growing Up Tethered’ (posted on Blackboard), what do you think she would say? Ultimately, are you more convinced by Turkle’s findings or those cited by the MacArthur Foundation mentioned above? Explain.