Buyer Behavior Book Report

Pages: 10 (2900 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 20  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Recreation

Consumer Behavior

The transition of viewing travel marketing from a traditional marketing standpoint to one dominated by psychographics and its implications on managing expectations is revolutionizing this industry. This analysis interviewed three travelers with significantly different expectations, need and preferences, and used the concepts obtained from the research completed to define a framework of using an integrated marketing communications (IMC) strategy for addressing those requirements. Meeting and exceeding expectations of travelers' from psychographic standpoint matters more than targeting them based on demographics. That is a key lesson learned from this research.Download full Download Microsoft Word File
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TOPIC: Book Report on Buyer Behavior Assignment

The decision-making process consumers use to define which of several vacation alternatives are the most attractive to them is much more of a trade-off process than it appears to be from the surface. The intent of this analysis is to evaluate how consumers intermediate and make trade-offs between different alternatives for vacation destinations, relying on Consumer Behavior principles used as a conceptual framework. This is the first objective of the study, followed by evaluating the internal factors of perception, motivation, learning, attitude and personality characteristics that influence the behavior of consumers over the long-term. The role of emotions in purchase behavior and the suitability of the models discussed in this paper to practitioners devising and executing strategies is also evaluated. Putting all of these objectives into the context of purchasing decisions of three consumers and their decision making process with regard to six different vacation destinations has been completed as part of this analysis. The study concludes with a brief literature review and recommendations for travel holiday marketers seeking to gain greater effectiveness in their holiday marketing efforts. Ultimately the decision making process of which travel destination to visit, which specific travel provider to trust, how much to pay, and which family members are included (Nanda, Hu, Bai, 2006) all are predicated on how effective holiday travel companies are in positioning their unique experiences (Pine, Gilmore, 2008) over just competing on price. This vital link of consumer behavior to experiential expectations (Pine, Gilmore, 2008) and the motivations to choose to travel to one location over another form the foundation of this analysis. Segmentation therefore is more attuned to lifestyles and preferences (Murphy, Mascardo, Benckendorff, 2007) than being purely driven by demographics. This makes the task of creating effective marketing campaigns more nuanced and less cookie-cutter as is the case when demographic data is being used (Pine, Gilmore, 2008). Looking at the factors of why people choose to travel to exotic places (Correia, do Valle, Moco, 2007) and the extent to which traditional marketing campaigns are effective or not (Johnson, Messmer, 1991) is implicit in this analysis completed. The end result is a series of recommendations and framework for holiday travel marketers to rely on in creating their specific marketing strategies.

1.0-6 Holiday Destination Options

In devising a methodology to capture the wide variation in how consumers view different destinations, the following six locations have been chosen. These represent the wide variation in adventure, education, and leisure holidays people are most likely to consider as exceptional experiences and therefore worthy of investing a larger amount of spending on. Each of these experiences is briefly described below as they were to the three respondents who assisted with completing this research.

1.1 Cruise-Alaska Luxury

The underlying psychographic needs that motivate consumers to choose one travel experience over another have abundant evidence in the cruise industry globally (Ratcliffe, 2001). From those middle aged cruise enthusiasts who seek the cruising experience as an opportunity to kick back and relax from their hectic lifestyles, to the senior citizens who perceive cruises as a means to stay connected with other retirees and share companionship as they travel to fascinating areas and learn new things (Ratcliffe, 2001) cruising psychographics have become well aligned to specific age groups globally. The breakout success of the Disney Cruise Line and its efforts to attract younger families has been successful as the company has successfully defined the experience of being onboard as an extension of being in a Disney park. Psychographics-based research has been in place nearly a decade in the area of cruise vacations and experiences (Litvin, Kar, 2001). Results indicate that senior citizens dominate this sector due to the unmet needs they have for companionship and affiliation, needs which younger travelers have met daily in their careers and families. A secondary component of these cruises from a psychographic perspective is the opportunity that senior citizens seek rewards or relaxation after raising their children and getting them through college (Ratcliffe, 2001). Combined with the need for companionship and the opportunity to learn, cruising is considered to be one of the more socially oriented travel experiences people engage in and as a result often attract senior citizens and those outside of the daily pace of society.

1.2 Camping/Caravan

The adventure inherent in camping and caravan travel, in addition to the next two of Thailand diving, Japan skiing and European scenic travel all are aligned with a completely different series of psychographic needs compared to the Alaskan cruise. Often the psychographic needs of those that participate in camping and caravans are oriented towards making memories with their family (Phillip, 1983).

1.3 Thailand Diving

The ability to afford diving trips is seen by many peers in the travel community as a luxury, and with the costs of hotels, travel and the rental of a diving boat, it can be well over $5,000 U.S. To complete a trip. The affluence that is connoted by being able to travel to a remote region of the world, for example Thailand has psychographics that are comparable to being able to afford an Alaskan cruise as well (Ratcliffe, 2001).

1.4 Japan Skiing

Skiing in Japan is highly unique and requires an entirely different psychographic and mindset definition compared to other destinations. Skiing connotes mastery, skill and to be good at it, it often requires an extensive amount of time. Skiing in Japan also requires the traveler to be in reasonably good to excellent physical condition, therefore this activity is best aligned to younger, thrill-seeking travelers who may be constrained on their budgets but not on their desire to experience highly unique vacations. This is one destination that has exceptional experiential value as skiing in a nation which such a different culture is going to be an exceptional experience overall as well (Pine, Gilmore, 2008).

1.5 Europe -- Scenic

One of the most frequented destinations globally, Europe provides each member of the respondent base of this study with a unique travel experience and the flexibility to define their own travel itinerary based on their budget, timeframes, interest, needs of adventure, affiliation or companionship or solitude. Travel through Europe has also long had aspirational value for students and also for the retired who again see this type of travel as a reward for their raising families and working hard to support those (Buhalis, 2002). As a result the psychographics of this specific market are significantly different than all the rest as the location appeals across a broad spectrum of travelers.

1.6 Japan Shopping

Psychographics of aspirational shoppers and those that like to barter and seek out discounts are most drawn to this type of holiday (Martin, 2004). As a result this is often packaged as part of tours of entire shopping districts as is often the case with discount marts and locations throughout Tokyo and the larger metro areas.

These were the six locations included in the methodology and then compared across five attributes in the following matrix, insights are gained into how to best serve them and provide the best possible experience (Pine, Gilmore, 2008).

2.0 What the people looking for their holiday

The intent of the following table is to define the evaluative criteria used for deciding between each of the six vacation destinations included in this analysis. The constraints of time and cost are also included in this analysis.

Cruise-Alaska Luxury

Camping / caravan

Thailand diving

Japan skiing

Europe - scenic

Japan shopping

Weather

Temperate, summer or autumn preference; tolerance for slight cold in late Sept.

Widely varies from summer conditions and high humidity to sun; rain at times

Very warm and humid; makes the water temp great

Chilly to very cold; Northern Japan gets over 30 inches a snow a season

Mostly completed during the summer months; takes place all year long however

Deal shopping and also aspriational vacationing

Adventure

Moderate to low; nothing too strenuous or risky.

High; there are plenty of uncontrollable factors in camping including wildlife

Very high; can encounter sea animals and wildlife

High; skiing is a peed sport and requires skill to enjoy

Medium to Low; on tours all is pre-arranged.

Medium to Low; a little sightseeing but mostly in shops

Relaxation

High; time to watch the coastline of Alaska go by and hear naturalist seminars and programs

Moderate to low; for parents there is the constant focus on children's health and safety. Stressful for those not familiar with the outdoors

High; away from the many communications tools society relies on… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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