Consumer Behaviour-Maslow's Hierarchy

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In order to meet the needs of consumers more effectively and efficiently, and to keep up with the ever-changing consumer and environment in which they live (Schiffman, O’Cass, Paladino, D’Alessandro & Bednall 2011), a fundamental understanding of consumer behaviour is essential for all marketers, and organisations today. Consumer behaviour is the study of how consumers spend there time, money and effort, when seeking, buying, using, evaluating, and disposing of products and services that have been chosen to fulfill a need (Schiffman et al. 2011). Throughout life there are many elements that constantly arise, all of which have an effect on ones needs, motivations, and goals, and how they are prioritised; an individual’s social status, financial situation and health, are three elements to discuss, that many would be familiar with today. In addition, a noteworthy theory to be considered, which looks at identifying priorities, and how, or why they are allocated to different needs, is a concept based on human motivation (Blackwell, Miniard & Engel 2006). Abraham Maslow, a clinical psychologist, is behind the well-known theory of human motivation - Hierarchy of Needs (Schiffman et al. 2011). Maslow’s theory is a model based on human motivation that places emphasis on the concepts of human needs (Oleson 2004). This concept was developed to seek an explanation into why individuals are driven by particular needs at particular times (Kotler, Adam, Denzie & Armstrong 2009). Maslow states that certain needs take preference over others (Blackwell 2006), by which the order of progression starts with lowers level needs – known as physiological needs, such as food, water, air, sex and sleep. Only once these are fulfilled, does a person move up the hierarchy to initiate a higher order need (Solomon, Russell-Bennett & Previte 2010) being safety, social, self-esteem, and lastly, self-actualisation needs. For example, when a person requires the need for food...
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