Discuss about the Impact of Lifestyle on Consumer Behavior.
This essay is basically discussed about the importance of consumer behavior in the marketing and the impact of lifestyles of the consumers on consumer behavior. Consumer behavior is an important factor of the marketing process. Whole marketing process depends upon the consumer’s perception and consumer’s buying behavior (Laamanen & Ska°l_en, 2014). Consumer behavior is important parts which must be take care by the organization while developing marketing strategies. Consumer behavior basically describes the perception or attitude of the consumers towards a particular product and service. For analyzing the behavior of the consumers, market researchers have given many models and theories such as Hierarchy of effect model, consumer information processing model etc. the decision making process of the consumers is affected by many factors such as demographic, geographic, personality, lifestyle, psychographic etc. In the research, it has been evaluated that lifestyle of the consumer affected the decision making process and buying behavior of the consumer towards a product and service. Lifestyle of the consumers changes because of some factors such as education, age, income, social class and some other factors. These factors of lifestyle play a major role in the buying behavior of the consumers. This essay would be helpful to know the factors of lifestyle responsible for the change of consumer behavior (Helm, Moulard & Richins, 2015)
Lifestyle of the Consumer
The lifestyle of an individual includes all the activities, values, opinion, perception, and interest towards a particular product and services. The lifestyle of an individual affects his buying behavior and decision making process to buy a particular product. Basically, lifestyle refers to the way how a person to live in the society and how he or she reacts towards a particular product or society (Richins & Marsha 2004). For example, if a family prefers healthy food and diet then they will go to the organic food store and buy organic and healthy product. Lifestyle of the consumers has always been a point to focus for marketers. Lifestyle is an important concept for segmenting the market and understanding the target market. Many researchers have done research on the lifestyle of the consumers to get more information about them. Lifestyle segmentation is very useful concept for the marketers and advertisement makers. It can be determined by the activities, views interests, opinion etc. it is important for the firms and organizations to understand the buyers and their lifestyles then should make marketing strategies according to that. There is an inter-connection among product, lifestyle and person (Reedy, 2014)
Figure 1: Connection with Lifestyles
(Source: Reedy, 2014)
Lifestyle of the consumer can be described by some points. These points are as follows:
Lifestyle as a group phenomenon: the lifestyle of an individual is affected by many factors such as involvement in the social groups, relationship with others etc. Every individual maintains his lifestyle differently and every person has different lifestyle from another person. For example, a college student has different lifestyle from a construction worker. The differences can be in the income level also. These all show the differences between the lifestyles of every person (Soule, 2012)
Lifestyles impacts behavior: Every person has different behavior towards the products and services. One can be satisfied with a particular product or service and on the other hand, another cannot be satisfied. It is based on the behavior and attitude of the consumer. Lifestyle of a person affects the behavior of the consumer. By knowing the lifestyle of the consumers, marketers would be able to know how the consumer will react in a particular area of product or service (Baumann, Engman, & Johnston, 2015).
Lifestyle as central life interest: lifestyle is also based on the interest of the consumers. When the interest of the consumers influences others, then their lifestyle will be identified. Central interest of the person may include family, work, religion, and leisure. The upper and middle class lifestyle of a person may be education or career oriented (Della, Porta & Diani, 2006).
Lifestyle based on sociology: Lifestyle of an individual may be based on the age, gender, ethnicity, social class, religion, and many more factors. Social changes are also one of the factors that affect the lifestyles of a person (Dubuisson-Quellier, 2013).
Lifestyle and Purchase Behavior
Lifestyle has become an important factor for taking the decision related to marketing strategies. Each service and product needs different target market and firm has to target the customers based on their requirements. Thus, it is very important to differentiate the market into parts for analyzing the mindset of the customers. Basically, lifestyle shoes a person’s values, attitudes, or vies towards any product and services. Every person lives a different lifestyle because of money and attitude. Personal values and lifestyle of consumers impacts the decision making process of products and services (Forno & Graziano, 2014). Lifestyle mainly includes personal values and money attitude which impact the decision making process of the consumers. Word is changing and with the changing world, lifestyle of human being is also changing. Thus, their consumption behavior is changing for products and services.
Personal values: Personal values can be defined as the values which are preferred by the individual and society towards something. It can be different for any product and services. Personal values are based on the values which are selected by the social values which indicate a person’s normal behavior and his choice. Values have some characteristics such as values are acquired, values show behavior, values are permanent, and they are dynamic and are widely accepted in the society. Consumers prefer the services and products which meet the requirements of the values and are acceptable by the whole society. Consumer always needs to make choices according to their values and marketers need to understand their values and choices. Consumers’ decision making is always influenced by many factors such as price level, brand, promotion, values, attitude, social norm and ethics, degrees of cleanness, convenience and comfort and their past experiences. The decision making process of the consumer have a great impact on the marketers strategies of marketing. Researchers differentiate the values into different catagories i.e. economic, political, religious, social, aesthetic, and theoretical. Every consumer follows the values in these groups and adopts the buying decisions according to these groups (Haenfler, Johnson, & Jones, 2012)
Money attitude: Money attitude basically includes the income level of a particular person. Money attitude has an important impact on the buying behavior of the consumer. Sometimes people divide the society in to the groups based on the money but it is considered the most important and essential part of marketing strategies. In the society, there are different types of customers and they have different income level. Consumers consume the products and services based on their income and earnings. Based on the income and money, they have different views, perceptions and attitudes towards the products and services available in the market. Along with this, money has also important attributes such as achievement and recognition, status, respect, freedom, control and power in the society. Money is an important factor which can influence the views and values of the consumers. Along with this, money and income level has the ability to change the perception of the consumers and their buying behavior and buying decision process. Money has both positive as well negative impacts on the society. Positive impact is that the person makes some values and ethics and follows them. On the other hand, negative impact is that people make budget according to the income level and purchase products based on that (Hwang & Kim, 2015)
There is a conceptual framework given by the researchers to show the connection between the income level, personal values and purchase decisions.
Figure 2: Framework of Lifestyle
(Source: Balsiger, 2010)
There are many ways by that consumer does purchasing such as online shopping, visit directly to the store etc. for those consumers who live a high standard lifestyle, they have positive impact on purchasing decision process. Some researchers focused on the purchase decision by analyzing personality characteristics and lifestyle to understand the consumer behavior. Impact of money attitude can be easily seen on teenagers and their purchasing power. Differences in money attitude can also impact on the family, behavior, and on the environment. Different background also have different perception about the money and according to their perception, they have different buying or purchasing behavior (Balsiger, 2010).
Lifestyle of the consumer is as a blueprint of his living standard. This shows the different behavior and different attitude towards particular brand and services. Lifestyle is person’s values and personal characteristics and money attitude is also impacted by the family, peers and environment. People with different lifestyles have different money attitudes and those differences in the lifestyle and money attitudes affect the purchasing behavior and purchase decision making process of the consumers. It is also found that the personal values of the consumers also impact the buying behavior of the consumers. Personal values have a positive role and impact on both the lifestyle such as activities, interest and opinions on purchasing decision process (Yates, 2011).
From the above discussion, it has been analyzed that understanding consumer behavior is very important for the firms to operate the business in the competitive market. Consumer behavior is an important factor of the marketing process. It is affected by many aspects such as lifestyle, peers, personality, perception, attitude and behavior of the consumer. In the market, consumer chose a product or service which match his lifestyle and values. So, a person can make a choice for particular brand and product according to his lifestyle. Lifestyle of the consumers changes because of some factors such as education, age, income, social class and some other factors. The lifestyle of an individual affects his buying behavior and decision making process to buy a particular product and every individual maintains his lifestyle differently and every person has different lifestyle from another person (Dobernig & Stagl, 2015).
It also has been observed that there are two factors in the lifestyle that are very important to influence the buying behavior of the consumers. Those two factors are money attitude and personal values of the consumers. Each service and product needs different target market and firm has to target the customers based on their requirements. Every person lives a different lifestyle having money and attitude and personal values. Values have some characteristics such as values are acquired, values show behavior, values are permanent, and they are dynamic and are widely accepted in the society. Consumer always needs to make choices according to their values and marketers need to understand their values and choices. So, the marketers need to identify and understand the personal values of the consumers and should provide the products and services according to that. On the other hand, money attitude also has an important impact on the buying behavior of the consumer. Consumers consume the products and services based on their income and earnings. So, it can be clearly seen that lifestyle of consumers has great impact on the buying behavior of the consumers (Zhang, 2015).
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