Brand Effect on Consumer Behavior Research Paper

Pages: 17 (4682 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Business - Advertising

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] g., higher price = higher quality). For the Chinese, the brand effect is very important. In China, brands accounted for one-third to one-half of all consumers' expressions of intent to purchase (2004). As an indicator of the importance of a brand name, Chinese culture has allowed for Chinese to wear the makers' tags on the sleeves of their suits and the brand name stickers on their sunglasses -- even though Western practices would be shun this (2004).

For Chinese in Ireland (or other Western countries), consumers are less likely to view the brand as the most important aspect of a product. Factors for Chinese living in Ireland may pay more attention to style, quality, cutting and fitting, color, ease of maintenance, the customer service in a store, price, and shop image (Yi-you 2004). This is even occurring in China today, which implies that consumers are gradually becoming more advanced in their buying requirements and that they are not as influenced (or deceived) by a brand name (2004).

While consumer behavior has matured for Chinese consumers, the brand effect still works -- that is, it's not failing. Yi-you (2004) asserts that "consumers' emphasis on style, quality, workmanship and so on brings an opportunity to expand the brand effect, because a successful brand should be the synonym of a popular product with good style, high quality, good workmanship and so on."

Chinese people like specialty stores as opposed to shopping malls, boutiques and/or department stores because specialty stores often have specific brands. Specialty stores often sell just one label or brand. "Strong brand information makes specialty stores effective channels in attracting early sympathizer" (Yi-you 2004). Many Chinese consumers will seek out a product at a specialty store and ask for information and specification details about the product. This helps them find a sense of security and comfort about the product. Yi-you (2004) states that this is true even with garment fashion brands. Chinese consumers want to know where it came from, how the brand became an international brand, and its world-wide market status as well (2004).

This information suggests that the brand effect is very successful when it comes to Chinese consumers. In China, specialty stores are usually the stores with the most potential for successful development.

Brand Preferences and Society and Culture

The social and cultural background of consumers clearly influences overall consumption spending as well as product and brand preferences (Garner 2005). In most cultures, Chinese and Irish included, self-improvement is a major trend in consumption. In Chinese culture, specifically however, self-improvement reflects traditional values as well as the upward mobility of the current younger generation who have the aspirations to work in big multinational firms, own their own companies (urged by the generation of Internet millionaires), and gain education experience overseas, which is what is occurring with the Chinese in Ireland now. "Two years ago it was reported that the best-selling publication in the busiest bookstore in Shanghai was the English dictionary" (2005). The country of China itself is now more open to outside influence than ever before in history -- as well as it being more open to trade, in general. Income and wealth inequality has risen significantly. Today there is more money for younger Chinese to travel outside of China for education and travel.

Purpose of marketing

The whole point of marketing -- at least good marketing -- is to consciously come up with a way of determining exactly what kind of brand to offer consumers and what kind of experience one wants to create for them. Certain brands have become a part of pop culture -- such as Levi's, Apple, Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Guess, Ikea, Target, Starbucks, Chanel, Nike, Gucci, Calvin Kline, and Microsoft -- among many others.

In 2001, the Chinese government launched the "going abroad" policy, encourage Chinese companies to invest and create Chinese brands in international markets. However, The Journal of Asia Business Studies reported in an article entitled, "Irish consumers' perception of Chinese brands and how to improve the 'made in China' image," that perceptions of Chinese brands among Western consumers have been shown to be consistently low, especially among European consumers (Wang & Gao 2010).

Irish consumer behavior

In a study conducted by Empathy Research in 2009, 87% of the surveyed sample of Irish individuals (a total of 1,002) said that they were very conscious of price when shopping for grocery items and 79% of individuals said they would be willing to switch to a non-brand if they were to pay lower prices. Fifty-eight percent of individuals stated that they are now shopping more than ever in discount stores (such as Aldi and Lidl).

Empathy Research (2009) found that 83% of Irish people are now shopping around to find better prices, 78% said that they now wait for sales when it comes to buying non-essential items. Seventy-five percent of individuals surveyed said that they have cut back their spending on non-essential items as well.

Mintel Oxygen Reports (2009) reported that consumer attitudes are significantly changing in Ireland. This report provides a snapshot of Irish consumers' attitudes and behavior and shows that those of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds are feeling the effects of recession, though to varying extents -- personally, financially and professionally.

The report shows that low key behavioral differences such at shopping at discounter, or buying own-label instead of premium brands is helping Irish people deal with the economic downturn affecting the world. According to the report, over a third (38%) of Irish consumers will think twice about spending more on premium brands in the future. One in five (20%) said they will buy more local produce to protect local jobs (Mintel 2009).

In an article entitled "Irish consumers' 'changing behavior'" (2010), RTT News reported that there is a new way that consumers are shopping in the Republic of Ireland. Two-thirds of consumers are spending more time hunting for values as opposed to simply seeking out brand names. Price Waterhouse Coopers conducted a survey that found that 65% of Irish consumers are now buying 'clever' and spending considerable time searching for values, about 55% are buying less and 35% are buyer cheaper (non-brand) items.

Significance of consumer goods

Consumer goods have a significance that goes way beyond their utilitarian character and commercial value. That significant depends on their ability to carry and communicate cultural meaning. The cultural meaning and consumption of consumer goods is always changing. "Cultural meaning flows continuously between its several locations in the social world, aided by the collective and individual efforts of designers, producers, advertisers, and consumers" (McCracken 1986). Cultural meaning is located in three places: the culturally constituted world, the consumer good, and the individual consumer, and it moves in a trajectory at two points of transfer: world to good and world to individual (1986).

Cultural, social, personal and psychological characteristics

Consumer purchases are strongly influenced by cultural, social, personal, and psychological characteristics. Cultural factors are the broadest and the deepest influence on consumer behavior. The marketer must understand the specific roles played by the buyer's culture, subculture, as well as social class. Culture is the most fundamental cause of a person's wants and behaviors. The differences between what Irish and Chinese will want in terms of brands will be impacted by the society they grew up in and what the basic values of that culture and society were -- as well as perceptions, wants, and family behaviors (Kotler & Armstrong 1998).

Subculture plays an important role as well; subcultures are groups of people within a culture who share common values or common life experiences. Nationality groups such as the Chinese in Ireland are found within larger communities and have distinct ethnic tastes and interests. Racial groups -- such as the Chinese in Ireland as well -- will have very distinct culture styles and attitudes that set them apart from the Irish. These subcultures can make up very valuable market segments and marketers will design products tailored to meet these people's requirements (Kotler & Armstrong 1998).

Social class is another important aspect that must be considered when contemplating buying behavior. Social class, it must be noted, is not solely determined by income, but it is also determined by similar values, interests -- and behaviors. People in the same social class tend to have very similar buying behaviors. This is where there will be distinct brand preferences in categories like clothing, home furnishings, and cars (Kotler & Armstrong 1998)

Price comparison

Price comparisons of branded goods, once the normal part of advertising, are now less prevalent in Ireland, according to an Irish times (2009) report. Price comparisons with branded goods are now mainly used to say "just as cheap" rather than "cheaper than" advertising, according to the article. The reasons for this occurrence is that there are no real "like-for-likes when it comes to own-label product comparisons" (2009). Heavy discounting on private label goods is much easier because of the retailers' level of control with the entire process.

7. Methodology… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Brand Effect on Consumer Behavior.  (2010, July 29).  Retrieved December 17, 2018, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/brand-effect-consumer-behavior/109216

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