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Psychological Influences on

Consumer Behaviour
Personality, Self-Image, and
Life Style
Self and Self-Image

 Self-image: A person’s perceptions of

his/her self
 People have multiple selves
– Different selves in different situations
Different Self-Images

Actual Self-
Ideal Self-Image

Ideal Social Social Self-Image


Different Self-Images
 Actual Self-Image
– How you see your self
 Ideal Self-Image
– How you would like to see yourself
 Social Self-Image
– How you think others see you
 Ideal Social Self-Image
– How you would like others to see you
Possessions Act as Self-Extensions

 By allowing the person to do things

that otherwise would be very difficult
 By making a person feel better
 By conferring status or rank
 By bestowing feelings of immortality
 By endowing with magical powers
Altering Self Images

 If actual and ideal self-images are

different, consumers may use products
to alter their selves
 Personality vanity: self interest or
admiration for one’s own
Internet Insight: Virtual Self

 Online individuals have an opportunity

to try on different personalities
 Virtual personalities may result in
different purchase behaviour
Self Concept and Marketing
 Use self-concept for segmentation and
 Market to consumers’ actual or ideal
– Depends on the nature of the product
 Promote products as ways of altering
or extending self-image
What is Personality?

The inner psychological characteristics

that both determine and reflect how a
person responds to his or her
The Nature of Personality

 Personality reflects individual

 Personality is consistent and
 Personality can change
Theories of Personality
 Freudian theory
– Unconscious needs or drives are at the heart of
human motivation
– Three interacting systems
• Id: primitive and impulsive drives
• Superego: Individual’s internal expression of
society’s moral and ethical codes of conduct
• Ego: Individual’s conscious control
Theories of Personality

 Neo-Freudian personality theory

– Social relationships are fundamental to
the formation and development of
– e.g., CAD theory
Horney’s CAD Theory

 Using the context of child-parent

relationships, individuals can be
classified into:
– Compliant individuals
– Aggressive individuals
– Detached individuals
CAD theory
 Compliant Personality
– One who desires to be loved, wanted, and
appreciated by others.
 Aggressive Personality
– One who moves against others (e.g.,
competes with others, desires to excel and
win admiration).
 Detached Personality
– One who moves away from others (e.g., who desires
independence, self-sufficiency, and freedom from
Copyright © 2006 Pearson Education Canada Inc.
Theories of Personality –
 Cognitive Theories of Personality
– Personality as differences in cognitive
processes (how consumers process and
react to information)

Copyright © 2006 Pearson Education Canada Inc.

Need for Cognition (NC)

A person’s craving for enjoyment of

 High NC consumers are likely to:
– Relate better to written messages
– Want product-related information
– Spend more time processing print ads
– Enjoy using the internet to get
Visualizers Vs Verbalizers

A person’s preference for information

presented visually or verbally
 Visualizers require strong visual
elements in ads
 Verbalizers prefer written information,
print ads, question-answer format
Theories of Personality –
 Trait theory
– Quantitative approach to personality as a
set of psychological traits
– Single-trait or multiple-trait theories
 Consumer materialism
– The extent to which a person is considered
 Fixed consumption behaviour
– Consumers fixated on certain products or
categories of products
 Compulsive consumption behaviour
– “Addicted” or “out-of-control” consumers
Consumer Innovativeness
 The degree to which consumers are
receptive to new products, new services or
new practices.
 Consumer innovators are likely to:
– Score lower on dogmatism
– Score higher on need for uniqueness
– Have higher optimum stimulation levels
– Have higher need for sensation seeking and
variety seeking behaviours
Consumer Materialism

 Possessions seen as for one’s identity

 Materialistic People
– Value acquiring and showing-off possessions
– Are particularly self-centered and selfish
– Seek lifestyles full of possessions
– Have many possessions that do not lead to
greater happiness
Consumer Ethnocentrism

 Ethnocentric consumers feel it is

wrong to purchase foreign-made
 They can be targeted by stressing
nationalistic themes
Fixated Consumption Behaviour
 Consumers have
– a deep interest in a particular object or
product category
– a willingness to go to considerable lengths
to secure items in the category of interest
– the dedication of a considerable amount
of discretionary time and money to
searching out the product
 Examples: collectors, hobbyists
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Brand Personality
 Personality-like traits associated with
 Volvo - safety
 Perdue - freshness
 Nike - the athlete
 BMW - performance
 Levi’s 501 - dependable and rugged
Personality and Marketing
 Identify relevant personality traits
 Target consumers with the relevant
personality traits
 Develop promotional messages that
appeal to consumers with specific
personality traits
 Develop a personality for the brand
Lifestyle and

A pattern of consumption reflecting a person’s
choices of how he or she spends time and money.

Perrson Product


Psychographic Segmentation
• To define target market

• To create new view of market

• To position product

• To better communicate product attributes

• To develop product strategy

• To market social/political issues

Integrating Products into
Consumer Lifestyles
• For most of the people the
game World of Warcraft is a
lifestyle. It’s an online game
and the average playtime for
a player is 3-4 hours a day.
First National Bank of
Omaha enabled gamers to
design their own credit cards
with their WoW characters.
Lifestyle Marketing
• Lifestyle marketing recognises that people sort
themselves into groups based on the things they like to do

• Lifestyle marketing looks at patterns of

behaviour to understand how people use
products to define lifestyles.

Examine how they make their choices in a variety of
product categories - in context

An important part of lifestyle marketing is to identify the set
of products and services that go together
Why is Knowledge about
lifestyles is important for
• Defining the target market (beyond demographics)
• New product development,
• Cross-merchandising Promotional and media
• strategies Creating a new view of the market
• Better communicating product attributes/benefits
• - to match a person's lifestyle.
Reaching consumers