More than ever we are surrounded by stuff. Products and services are at our fingertips with a click of a button. In the world of marketing, we want to learn and know what makes people buy the things that they buy and why. There are individual consumers and organizational consumers.
An individual consumer, which is the category most of us, including myself, would fall under, is a type of consumer that purchases goods and services to satisfy their own personal needs. Whereas an organizational consumer, such as a business, buys products to produce other goods and services, re-sell the goods purchased to individual consumers or other organizations, or help manage and run their own organization.
As an individual consumer, I try to focus on buying things that I absolutely need rather than want, however there are those moments of weakness where I succumb to the marketing ploys of a good sale at my favorite clothing store, otherwise known as impulse buying. Many times what influences my buying habits are the reviews I see from not only social media or on the website of the good or service, but also by word of mouth from my friends and family.
For example, if I see a pair of shoes, specifically Birkenstock sandals, and I am aware of the brand, the price range and the products but I have always been hesitant about purchasing, I will ask the other consumer (my friend) what they think of that brand and shoe. Once I get a sense of how they feel about the product, it helps me make a decision on whether or not it is worth me investing in a pair for myself. People trust people more than they do a brand or company. I am more influenced by someone else’s review of a product or service to get me to buy something.
Even though I am a consumer who likes to get the opinion of others for certain products, I can also be persuaded by a good marketing campaign. Depending on what the product or service is, if I am drawn in enough by either the content being posted on the brands social media page, the TV commercial that was well done, or even the way it is displayed in the store (I have to restrain myself at Sephora or Ulta), I am always intrigued and sometimes will give that brand a chance solely by its clever and strategic marketing.
If I am unhappy with a product or service, which has happened as it does to many consumers, I will either not recommend it to my close peers and friends and family, or if I am very unhappy I will provide my feedback on either a survey or the company site so it can help them gather data on how they can improve their product so they don’t have more than 1 or 2 unhappy customers. It is always said that 1 bad review can trump all of the good ones.