In the course of carrying out this research, I will be looking at the important marketing communication factors within the marketing of products, the factors that influences the consumers buying behaviors within business in general Secondly, I will be looking into the views and ideas of some various scholars on consumers buying behavior and the important of communication in enhancing customer’s relationship within the function of marketing. Finally I will be looking at the major element of communication on business and a research exercise will be carryout to find out the various opinions on the influences of consumers buying behavior and how promotional message (communication) have influenced their own buying behavior as a consumer, And also I will be making recommendations on how promotional messages (communication) can be improved in order to influence more buyers in the marketing of goods/services.
Marketing communication is not just a communication that defined the kind of message exchange, is the relationship that defined the organization to consumer which is the medium through which a source develops a message, transmits it to an audience via some form of medium, and obtains feedback from the audience and it is important because so as to generate, store, analyze, disseminate anticipated marketing decision information on a regular continuous basis. Marketing communication has no meaning without the elaboration of different features of product. Advertiser highlights different aspects of product whether it is the performance or the appearance depending upon the objective of the communication.
Some of these feature of products usually with packaging, quality, appearances, taste, styles, design and even reliability. Most writers see packaging as the unique way to crates promotional opportunity Jewell (2000 p283) explains packaging provides a unique opportunity in the promotional activities and constantly reminds the customers to buy the products. Marketing communications plays a grates in the buying behavior of consumers as the research goes on we will see more on how consumers life style is been influenced in the buying patterns on good/services, Jewell (2000, p.104) explains that lifestyle is the pattern of spending and the visible manifestation of the local environment while Kotler (2006, p.183) believes it is the pattern of a person’s living in the environment which is shown in his thinking, activities, interests and the opinion about such things. As the work goes on we will see more on these influences of consumers buying and their decision process towards purchases. 1.1 Statement of Problem:
Marketing communication is one of the most convincing ways in which most business presents their problem to the public in order to create awareness about their products/services and what they have to offer to the consumers. Many business we see today presents themselves in a different ways, forms and even styles to the audiences to draw their attention toward them, McDonalds, M &S, Muller, KFC, supermarkets like, Tesco, Sainsbury and even the coca cola companies has benefited through the use of communication in targeting consumer which has contributed to the success of their company. The potent problem of marketing communication and the influences of buyer’s behaviours are listed below How importance’s marketing communication is on our business Factors affecting buyers’ behaviours and their decision making. 1.2 Purpose of Study:
The primary aim of this research work is to take an in-depth look into the importance of marketing communication factors and the reason behind it as well as looking in to the factors that influence the consumers buying behavior through the use of promotional messages such as consumer demographics, their life-styles/ decision making and the following will also be considered as the research is being carried out as my objective to this research project. The importance of understanding consumer’s behaviours, because by understanding the consumer a marketer is better able to predict how consumers will respond to the marketing strategies. The channels of communication in which most business send their sources in order to target market (promotional planning) Recommendation on how promotional message (marketing communication) could be improved in targeting more consumers buying behaviors.
1.3 Scope of Study:
The scope of study on my research work will be covering majority of marketing activities such as product features, branding, packaging and the need to improve communication within organization in order to influence the buying behavior of consumers on business.
1.4 Significance of Study:
Communication in most businesses as a function is easily overlooked and the ability to communicate effectively is very important in every business sector especially in our modern economy today. Every business organization carries out thoughts and visions about products/services to consumers in order to influence their buying behavior through the use of communication. The hope of this research is that at the end of the work I will be able to bring out the significant importance in the following areas: To show the success of effective communication within business and the need to bring out promotional knowledge of a product to the public is very important. It will also show the useful information and recommendation on how communication can be improved in order to target market and influence consumer behaviours about products. The benefits factors about the importance of marketing communication. .
Marketing communication is one of the most convincing ways in which many businesses today understands their consumer buying behaviors through the combination of different element in delivering of their services about their products to the public. This is a promotional activity that makeup communications mix within the function of business according to types of goods/services, characteristics of customers and company resources. Messages is one of the important factor in marketing communication that stimulates the desired and responses of the public through the use promotional message and Brovee & Thrill (1992, p527) both explain message as the ‘ideas which is capable of being transmitted’. The delivery of messages usually involves various types of advertising in which most businesses uses to create an awareness of an organization, its products or services through the use of advertisement such as funny, sexual, musical and animated promotional message advert of which Fill 2005 (p.543) believes is a type of advertising that is suitable when the product is too complex and it is easiest way to convey that product. And there are other factors which will be discuss later on this research. Dibb (2001) describes consumer buying behavior as ‘the decision process and acts of individuals involved in the buying and using of products or services’.
And according to the business dictionary ‘consumers buying behavior is also describe as the process by which individuals search for, select, purchase, use and dispose of goods and services in satisfaction of their needs and wants’. Understanding the influences on consumer buying behavior is vital roles in which marketer has to know the basis for product development, innovation, pricing, advertising and every aspects of marketing communication relies on the consumer behavior pattern, beacause every human being has certain basic needs to fulfill in relating to products that meets their need and desire, that is why Dibb, Simkin, Pride & Ferrell, (2001) both believe to find out what satisfied customers, marketers must examine the main influences on what, where, when and how customers buy goods and services.
Marketing communication in many society today has develop in to critical mediating process that links a companies offering to its intended consumers which is much more complex and far reaching than ever before, giving marketer an evolving and wide range of possible communication channel such as the sender Fill (2005, p.37) explains as the individual or firm who feels the need to deliver the message and selects the combination of symbols, pictures, music or words as a message to be transmitted and the receiver as the person or company who receives the messages, we also have the feedback Bovee & Thill (1992, p.528) describe as the receiver’s communication back to the sender in response to the sent message, Kotler & Keller (2006, p.539) both argues that noise which is also a source of communication is a random and competitor’s messages can interfere the planned intended communication while that of encoding source of communication channel Czinkota & Ronkainen (1998, p.361) depicts that it is the design of the symbolic arrangements which should be understandable by the receiver. There are other sources which will be discussed later below and as the research goes on we will be able to see more other function that is commonly associated with marketing communication.
2.1 DEFINITION OF TERMS
The term communications is process that is been used to persuade people into product purchase through the use of mass media communications such as direct mail, newspapers, magazines, television, radio, billboards, telemarketing, and the Internet. Adverting, sales promotions, personal selling, public relation, direct selling and interactive marketing are all form of marketing communication in the function of our daily business which is been use in the influence of consumers buying behavior towards products/services. Different writers have their different views about marketing communication, according to the views of some school of thoughts and scholars. Kotler (2006, p.536) believes ‘Marketing communications are the means by which firms attempt to inform, persuade, and remind consumers-directly or indirectly about the products and brands that they sell’. Nickels (cited in Czinkota & Ronkainen 1998, p.360) both explained ‘Marketing communication is a dialogue that allows organizations and consumers to achieve mutually satisfying exchange agreements’. Yeshin (1999) also defines ‘Marketing communications as the process by which a marketer develops and presents stimuli to a defined target audience with a purpose of eliciting a desired set of responses’.
2.2 THE IMPORTANCE OF MARKETING COMMUNICATION FACTORS
Marketing communication factors is a tool that helps business succeeds in the targeting of their product/services to the audiences. There are various factors which is importance in the marketing of goods/services through communication some of these factors are as follows: Persuasion: is one of the main factors in marketing communication that enables businesses to engage in the marketing of their products/services to a target audience through buying of their products. And this is one of the most powerful forces in our daily life/businesses that influences majority of our society at large such as politics, legal decision, news, mass media and even advertising etc, are all influenced through the power of persuasion. The use of this factor on marketing communication has help grown business tremendously through the use of various sources such as television, internet, radio etc all help spread persuasive messages very quickly to the target consumers.
Coca-cola organization is a good example of company that uses the persuasive message marketing communication factors in the targeting of customers through the use of television commercial or advertisement shows, creating a goals in mind which is to persuade their target audiences that coke product is the refreshing cola that brings the world together and of which they have different verities that suits every needs such as coke zero, diet coke cherry coke etc. Goal Directed: goals oriented is an important factors on marketing communication that enable business to creates an objective strategy to the targeting of customers and meeting of their needs in the selling of product, delivering of information and building brands awareness on products/services been offered to the audiences. There are various ways in which goals can be directed on organization products, McDonalds is an example of organization that there prime focus is on the targeting of customers (children) creating happy meal which is targeted at children, small toys are given along with their meals, there goals in mind towards the establishment of their food products is to target more customers through use of various gift offers in order for them to come back for more next time especially on children meals.
Point of Contact: This is another factor on marketing communication that enables organization to manage their products more effectively, understanding the challenges and requirement about products, knowing the weakness of what is going on and things that needs to be improved, development of new ideas going on the industrial sector etc. Point of contact also helps to get in touch with customers and it support internal initiative which build employee excitement around brands and products. Point of contact are marketing messages that are received by the target audiences they can either be planned and unplanned contacts examples of planned contacts are brochures, business cards and advertisement while unplanned contacts are employee attitude, store cleanliness, layout of store etc. Message: is one of the basic of business marketing communication strategy which have verities of tools used in the delivering of marketing to audiences about products/services through the prescribed media or combination of media by their different element such as advertising of promotional message which can be direct with product information or contain emotional message such as (funny, sexual, musical, animated etc) that hit on the emotions of the receiver.
These are the psychological way through which our brains put us in a situation to take the message in the context which it comes from the marketer. Advertising message contains product information in different forms such as the objectives of which is to educate the receivers and sometimes products can be better served by information oriented messages than emotional messages. Funny advertising spreads creating humor that makes marketing communication message about products more interesting and crispy. And many advantages are associated with the usage of humoristic advertising creating interest and at the same putting viewers in a good mood towards products purchases. Animated promotional advertising is a process that is used for children and also adult as a target to audience. Duck and muller advert on commercial TV is an examples of animated advertisement been used in the promotional of Muller yogurt/duck cleaner to target consumers. Sexual advertising is one of most commercial promotional messages activities in which most business uses in creating attentions and interest for viewer towards products/services.
These types of promotional advertisement is usually common in the developing of perfume, jewellery, foundation for ladies and dress advertising like M&S advert on TV. Stakeholders: is another great factor on marketing communication that influences the purchase of product/services as well as the success of a company through individuals or groups. Employees, government regulators, distributors and even media is an example of stakeholders that enables the services of an organization to flow effectively, inspiring of services to customer excellence through loyalty, respect, retention, reliability and increasing customer’s satisfaction with service experiences as a function of employee satisfaction itself through connected stakeholder’s relationships. Services to customer’s satisfaction with experience companies and organization also invest in attracting, acquiring, retaining, satisfied loyal employee that posses the ability to deliver exceptional services to customers and their need. Media: is another important factor behind the success of advertising in which messages are been developed in order to target the audiences about a particular products/services and the use of media especially within these modern ages has also improves the bundle of cultural presentations on products through media tools such as broadcasting, magazine, direct mails, newspapers, television, radio, cinema, internet, outdoors, books etc.
Television is one of the basic major elements of communication most countries uses in the promoting of a products to consumers which is very common in our society today and most television commercial feature a song or jingle that listener’s relate to products. Loreal business organization commercial for example on ITV1 been features by Beyonce on how ladies foundation (cosmetic) is the best and long lasting that is what it, to put on, it’s a commercial that creates entertainment value for the products in order to draw the customers attentions towards making purchase. Newspaper is another source of media for advertising in which most business uses in reaching out to customers.
Most people have their particular brand in newspaper and of which some are addicted to it, T-Mobile, O2 and even Orange is an example of business organization that you will always see one of their advert on newspapers about their deals on contact/mobile-phones. Outer door media such as billboards, transit advertising is a type of advertising most business uses to creates awareness to remind and persuade customers about their products through promotional message. Business like Adidas is an example of a film that uses this method in the communicating of their products to target customers, sending promotional message through the decorating of shoe with flowers around and formula tooth care business organization also uses this method of billboard in promoting their products to the audiences showing how easy it’s to build a strong tooth when using the products.
2.3 THE INFLUENCE ON CONSUMERS BUYING BEHAVIORS
Consumers buying behavior are an act of individual and a decision making process in which consumers search for products, select and purchase good/services in the satisfaction of their needs/ wants. This is a multi step decision making unit process in which we humans engage in the satisfying of our needs and desires towards the purchases of goods/services that are being offered in the marketplace. And the use of promotional tools within the function of business has also helps create more awareness about an organizations product in their buying behavior about on goods/services. There are some factors that influence the desires and needs of consumers buying behavior which are: Consumer Demographics: is one of the easily identifiable and measurable statistics that describe the population, size, gender, age, location, housing, mobility, income, expenditures, and occupation. Education and marital status are also examined, in order to understand consumers; a firm must be able to determine the most appropriate audience to which to appeal and the combination of marketing factors that will satisfy this audience.
The scope of consumer analysis includes who, what, why, how, when, where, and how often. Demographics are the easily identifiable and measurable statistics that is been used to describe the population which is also important for an organization to understands the influence demographic has on consumers, knowing the difficulty some consumer are likely to experience in making decision in the market place such as segmenting audiences for their marketing community, vary style and contents accordingly etc. This helps an organization to determine the ratio and advantage of groups of consumers to be targeted in the delivering of a message to the public about goods/services. Looking at the size of a prospective, a family is consists of relatives residing together, a household consists of a person or person occupying a housing unit related or not. In many countries today family and household sizes have declined as single people living alone has grows rapidly which is also important for an organization to bear in mind when targeting audiences of this categories. And the limitations of demographics are noted: absolute data, hidden trends or implementations, limited use of single demographic statistics and lack of explanation of the factors effecting behavior, consumer decision making and motivation.
The term “Motivation” also plays a big role on consumer’s behavior especially in most businesses for examples hotel business can shown to offer their customers with radio frequency identification (RFID) technology in order to enhance user’s benefits and experience since the costs of RFID (technology) is diminishing and older consumers may consider themselves too old and less innovative having-low cognitive capabilities to use radio frequency identification while family with young consumer may find it more interesting to use RFID technology with high innovative and cognitive capability and the use of this technology can also help improve efficiency and performances of employees. Motivation also influences the decision of buyers through positive/negative promotional message on goods/services for examples countries like America, UK in which white-collar jobs are very much common following the norm of a dressing code such as wearing of suits, dresses in the workplace, opinions of consumers friends, families and even colleagues at work can affect the consumption choices of buyers through brands and quality problem within a particular suits company, which is why it’s important for business to understand their buying factors, their needs and opinions about products bearing in the mind the type of brand, quality of products that consumers will prefer and knowing the type of demographic to be targeted.
Consumer Life Styles: is one of another factors affecting consumer buying behavior, this is refer to the way in which we as a human lives in a society which is also expressed by things in our surrounding. Consumer life styles and decision making are concepts that are useful in explaining why and how consumers act as they do. Life styles are comprised of various social and psychological factors. In the decision making process, consumers move through several stages, from stimulus to purchase or non purchase. As demographic data alone is often inadequate for making marketing decisions, many firms analyze consumer social, psychological, and decision making – information in consumption with demographics and then develop descriptive consumer profiles. Social and psychological factors comprise a consumer’s life-style, the pattern in which a person lives and spends time and money.
A consumer’s social profile is made up of several elements, including culture, social class, performance, reference groups, opinion leaders, family life style and time expenditures. A psychological profile is based on a combination of those attributes: personality, attitude, level of class consciousness, motivation, perceived risk, innovativeness, and importance of purchase, a consumer is influenced by his/her perception, or interpretation, of the choices available to him/her. For instance, a health-conscious parent who is motivated to purchase breakfast for his/her children might rule out all local brand produce by the local supermarket like Sainsbury baked bean for instances and buy Heinz baked beans because she perceives them to be more original and of tasteful to eat while on the other students will prefer that of the local supermarket because its more affordable for them. Consumer needs, beliefs, attitude and past influences their buying decision.
22.214.171.124 CONSUMERS DECISION MAKING
Consumer’s decision process is composed of the process itself and the factors affecting it (demographics, social factors, and psychological
factors). This is a stage in which organizations and consumer go through in order to decide whether to buy or not to buy, sometimes groups of individual take part in the purchasing decision making process which is usually within an organizational message promotion or complex family purchases decision about product/services which can be delayed or terminated by the consumer at any point in time. The process of consumer buying behavior consists of various steps which are the need recognition/problem-solving, information search, evaluation of alternative purchase, and post purchase behavior. Need Recognition/Problem Solving is a process that deals with the awareness of unsatisfied need or problem about products in which a consumer is lacking or running out off and the need to solve this problem in order to enhances his/her life or make things easier is to recognize the problem because without recognizing these need/want or problem, consumer would not seek to buy goods/services.
And needs arise for a different reason because different people will be aware of different needs but once these needs have been recognized then consumers can be in a state of heightened attention and would be more likely to take notice of products/services that fulfill their needs and desired state. For example a couple planning on going out for party with friends and needs a pair of shoe for the party in order to match out her outfit for the big day but later discovers that the one she has in mind to put on had broken. The wife recognizes that there is a difference between the desired state (shoe) and the actual condition (broken shoe) and a problem need to solve since there is no more shoe that matches her outfit. Information Search is a process whereby prospective buyer seeks information about products after recognizing the problem in order to satisfy his/her need. Consumer try to solve the problem by asking friends and seeking advices about products that is best serve with their need. For example the couples wife who discovers her shoes was broken will like to have another pair of shoes to replace the broken of which she has to carry out some research maybe through a commercial been shown on TV or by asking friend/relative about the products been advertised their experience with such brands, their delivering information, quality and even the price of it etc.
Most of this information they may seek from various sources such as internal search, commercial, personal experiences, personal sources and public sources etc. Evaluation of Alternative is a process whereby consumers evaluate their various dimension, features, and characteristics and compares benefits of an available product/services for example a consumer who wants to buy a car after going through the first two steps of decision making, she/he will like to know the type of features that the car has such as airbag, air conditioning system and electrical control on windows etc, this process can be influenced by marketers through the framing of an alternative in describing the product and its feature more clearly to customers because consumers also thinks about how each criterion is different from brand to brand. Purchase Decision is a stage that involves brand and the retail outlet to purchase a product, at this stage one must understand who is actually responsible for making the purchase decision.
For example a consumer may select a brand of shoes from different alternative products of shoes, of which a final decision has to be made where to buy and make the final transaction procedures and most time this process of decision purchase can be influenced by family members. Post-Purchases is a process whereby a buyer takes products away and continues to develop feelings about it or begins to check his/her products if it actual meets the expectation which could be satisfaction or dissatisfaction. The limitations of the decision making process for marketer lies in the unexpressed nature of many parts of the process, the subconscious nature of many actions by consumers and the impact of demographic, social and psychological factors.