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Applied Buyer Behavior Project


Applied Buyer Behavior Project Overview and Guidelines Project Objective To analyze the consumer decision making process involved in the purchase of an high value item. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Applied Buyer Behavior Project

Applied Buyer Behavior Project
  • Overview and Guidelines

Project Objective
  • To analyze the consumer decision making process
    involved in the purchase of an high value item.

A Brief Overview
  • Field Activity
  • One person, the consumer, actually goes through
    the process of purchasing (without finally
    purchasing) the item.
  • Another person acts as a observer, making notes
    of the consumers behavior.
  • Based on the notes, you generate a consumption
    story and analyze it.
  • In Stage 1, you engage in the field activity and
    generate the consumption story.
  • In Stage 2, you perform the consumer behavior

Detailed Instructions Step 1
  • Form your team.
  • Decide on team by Monday, March 1st, 2006.
  • Make the following assignments and decisions
  • The team members
  • Two members per team you choose based on your
  • If one of you is planning to buy a large ticket
    item for which you intend to do some research
    before buying, then that person should play
    consumer and the other observer.
  • If that is not the case, then you make your own
  • You choose the product, as long as it is a
    reasonable large valued item for which you are
    planning to do research before buying.

Step 2
  • Turn in the Project Outline Document with the
    following information
  • Project title
  • Consumer and observer (class time)
  • Product chosen
  • A brief outline of how you plan to go about the
  • This should be one-page. It should be formatted
    as follows
  • One-inch margins on all sides
  • Double line spacing
  • 12-point times-roman font
  • Normal paper
  • When and Where March 1st, 2006 in class.

Step 3 Field Activity
  • Consumer initiates the shopping process.
  • The observer follows the consumer through the
  • Make notes of consumers thoughts, actions,
    feelings and the interactions he/she has with the
    decision environment.
  • The observer makes note of all significant events
    in the shopping process.
  • When the observer is unsure what the consumer is
    thinking simply ask the consumer and document the
    question and response.
  • The consumer stops when he/she has arrived at a
    final decision.

Step 4 Summarizing Field Activity
  • The notes made by observer is call Field Notes.
  • Make this in clean sheets of paper.
  • Using the field notes, reconstruct a typed-up
    version, focusing on significant events and
    disregarding insignificant events. This can be a
    set of bullet points, organized chronologically.
  • This typed-up version is called Shopping Log,
    about 5-8 pages.

Step 5 Generating the Shopping Story
  • Using the shopping log, create a seamless story
    from start to finish, of the shopping activities.
  • Begin with a short introduction.
  • Conclude with a paragraph on what the consumer
    set out to do, and the extent to which the
    consumer was able to achieve his/her goal.
  • To do this, the observer should have a brief
    interview with the consumer, asking him/her
    questions that will elicit the above information.
  • After the interview, the consumer and observer
    jointly produce this paragraph.
  • Sections of shopping story
  • Introduction, shopping story details, shopping
  • 3-5 pages, standard formatting.

Step 6 Turn in for Stage 1
  • The following Field Activity Document should be
    turned in
  • Title page (title, last 4 digits of SSN, class
    time, course number)
  • Field notes (photo copy, retain original)
  • Shopping log
  • Consumption story
  • Keep an exact copy for yourselves.
  • When and Where March 27th, 2006, in class.

Step 7 Begin Stage 2, WC Analysis
  • Take the shopping story from the Field Activity
    Document, and identify elements of the WCA.
  • Take the original document and insert
    superscripts as follows
  • A for affect
  • C for cognition
  • B for behavior
  • ME for marketing environment
  • This includes products, ads, coupons,
    salespeople, store layout, price etc.
  • E for general environment

Step 8 Identify Key WCA Interactions
  • In this stage, you examine the shopping story and
    identify central interactions between elements of
    WCA that you identified in Step 7.
  • E.g., The salesperson helped me understand the
    difference between a Recordable CD drive and a
    Re-writable CD drive.
  • In this example, the salesperson is part of the
    marketing environment and understanding the
    difference between CD-R and CD-RW is cognition.
  • This is a ME ? C interaction.
  • Simply list the central interactions that had an
    impact on the consumer choosing the product
    he/she eventually did.
  • Do so in the form of a table (max 12 to 15

Sample Interaction Table
Interaction Classification of Interaction
Salesperson helped understand difference between CD-R and CD-RW ME ? C

Step 9 Means Ends Chains Analysis
  • Observer should ask the consumer to list a set of
    three key attributes that caused him/her to
    choose the final product.
  • For each attribute, the observer and consumer
    should jointly derive the means-ends chains.
  • You do this by focusing on one attribute at a
    time, and asking why that is importantyou will
    end up with an abstract attribute, or a
  • Then ask why that is importantand so on until
    you identify as much of the components of the
    means-ends chain (please refer to my discussion
    on assignment 2 in the website for more details).
  • This you should repeat for each of the three

Sample Means-Ends Chain
Carl Zeiss Lens
Concrete Attribute
Better picture quality and imaging
Functional Consequence
I Can keep precious memories clear
Terminal Value
You can make this more elaborate, and are
encouraged to do so.
Step 10 Identify Problem Solving Process
  • Refer to the generic problem solving process.
  • Identify the following elements based on the
    shopping story
  • Problem Recognition
  • Search for Relevant Information
  • Evaluation of Alternatives
  • Choice Decisions
  • Purchase (imaginary)
  • Post-purchase Use and Re-evaluations (imaginary)

Sample Problem-Solving Process
Problem Recognition
Need camcorder to tape sons soccer games
Search for Relevant Information
Checked Best Buy,, and with a friend
Evaluation of Alternatives
Sony TRV 530 has 2.5 screen, regular lens, 699,
but DC-TRV 20 has Zeiss lens, 3.5 screen for 799
Choice Decision
DC-TRV 20 b/c of lens, FireWire port
Purchased at Best Buy b/c of price and service
Post-purchase Use and Re-Evaulation
Could send digital videos to Grandparents, who
very much enjoyed it. I am happy that I bought it
Step 11 Suggestions for Marketer
  • In this section, using the consumers experience
    as a basis, come up with suggestions for the
  • How can things be done to
  • facilitate things that will help the consumer
  • remove obstacles that hinder the consumer
  • Suggested length, ½ a page to 1 page.
  • Also write a short conclusion on what you learned
    from the project (suggested length ½ page to ¾

The CB Analysis Document
  • Now you should have the following
  • WCA analysis of shopping story (shopping story
    with appropriate superscripts)
  • Key interactions among elements of WCA (as a
  • Means-ends chains
  • Problem-solving process
  • Suggestions for the marketer
  • A short conclusion.
  • We will refer to this as the Consumer Behavior
    Analysis Document

Step 12 Turn-in Final Project Document
  • Turn in your project with all of the following,
    in the following order (the first three are from
    the Field Activity Document, and the last six are
    from the CB Analysis Document)
  • Title page with a title, the last four digits of
    consumer and observer, class time, course name
    and number, semester.
  • Shopping log (from stage 1, with any corrections)
  • Shopping story (same as above)
  • WCA analysis of shopping story (shopping story
    with appropriate superscripts)
  • Key interactions among elements of WCA (as a
  • Means-ends chains
  • Problem-solving process
  • Suggestions for the marketer
  • A short conclusion.

Page Length Suggestions for Sections
  • Title Page 1 page
  • Field Notes No restriction
  • Shopping Log 5-8 pages
  • Shopping Story 3-5 pages
  • Shopping Story with WCA Same with superscripts
  • WCA Interactions 1-2 pages
  • Means-ends chain 3 pages (1 per attribute)
  • Problem-solving process 1 page
  • Suggestions for marketer 1 page
  • Conclusion 1 page

Document Submission Deadlines
  • Project Outline Document March 1st, 2006
  • Field Activity Document March 27th, 2006
  • Complete Project Document April 19th, 2006

Concluding Comments
  • The only point of difference between consumer and
    observer is the role they play in the field
  • Past that point, every portion of the project
    document should be generated jointly.
  • Start every section on a new page.
  • The final project is due on April 19th, 2006.