Marketing Involves Consumers to Make Unecessary Purchases
Marketing as both a process and a philosophy has developed as society has developed. When man first realised the benefits of trade, markets were both local and relatively independent. The relationship between producer and consumer was direct and personal. The Industrial Revolution lead to changes in production and consumption. Mechanisation, mass production, and labour specialisation lead to dramatic increases in production, and with it, a need for distribution. The relationship between producer and consumer had become relatively indirect.
Since the first production surplus, marketing has been based on the principle of exchange – interested parties exchanging something of value. In 1776, when Adam Smith said, “Consumption is the sole end and purpose of production” he was describing what in recent times has become known as the marketing concept (McDonald & Keegan, 1997, pg. 1).
In marketing terms, the consumer can be defined as any individual, group of individuals or organization. The role of the consumer is expanded to include the categories of payer, user and buyer, be it an individual, a household or an organization. Products are also generalised to include all goods, services, places, people and ideas.
In recent times, the broad nature of marketing has lead to acceptance of the following definition. “Marketing is the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organisational goals” (Czinkota et. al, 2000, pg. 8). Simply, modern marketing includes everything from conception to consumption of an idea.
Marketing stimuli consists of the four P’s – product, price, place and promotion (Kotler & Armstrong, 1996, pg. 143). In relation to this mix, marketers must first understand how buyers’ characteristics influence perception of products, and secondly, how buyers make decisions. Consumer behaviour includes the studies of any behaviour, internal or external, mental and physical, that influence purchase.
Consumer motivation is simply a drive to achieve goals, to satisfy needs and wants. A need being, “Any unsatisfactory condition of the consumer that leads him or her to action that will make the condition better”, while wants are, “desires to obtain more satisfaction than is absolutely necessary” (Czinkota et. al, 2000, pg. 138).
Maslow's Theory of Motivation sought to explain why consumers are driven by needs. Maslow suggested consumer needs are arranged in a hierarchy. A person will try to satisfy the most important need before attempting to satisfy the next. From this model, all consumers will attempt, in a world of scarcity, to best fill needs from basic physiological up to self-actualising needs (Kotler & Armstrong, 1996). In third world countries, a basic need would be fire to cook meals. In developed countries, it could be...