MEANS-END THEORY. INTRODUCTION PRODUCT RELATED KNOWLEDGE KINDS OF ATTRIBUTES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ATTRIBUTES CONSEQUENCES-BENEFITS PERSONAL VALUES IMPORTANCE TO CONSUMER IMPORTANCE TO MARKETER. BASIC MEANS- END MODEL INTRODUCTION CONTD.
MEANS-END THEORY INTRODUCTION PRODUCT RELATED KNOWLEDGE KINDS OF ATTRIBUTES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ATTRIBUTES CONSEQUENCES-BENEFITS PERSONAL VALUES IMPORTANCE TO CONSUMER IMPORTANCE TO MARKETER
BASIC MEANS- END MODELINTRODUCTION CONTD. Means end theory is a theory about customer behavior This theory emphasizes how personal values influence individual behavior Personal values are defined as “ motivating, end states of existence” which individuals strive for
INTRODUCTION CONTD. • Gengler and Reynolds describe personal values as “ internal, self relevant goal states” • Therefore, each individual has their own personal values which are the ends that they seek. • Means are the things that people use to reach those ends • In marketing, means refer to product attributes (characteristics of the means) and consequences-personal relevant. (positive consequences are seen as benefits)
The ends means theory was developed by Gutman (1982) and it allows the researchers to explore consumer choice beyond the superficial level to understand the emotional underpinnings that drive consumer’s decisions.
Through interviews, the researchers guide participants through levels of abstraction, moving from the superficial factors that guide their choice, to the consequences that they perceive will arise( consumers seek to maximize positive outcomes) from their choice, and finally to the personal values they are attempting to reinforce.
From each attribute that an interviewee describes as important, a means-end chain is created to explore the interconnections between the attributes, the anticipated consequences that arise from the attributes, and finally the personal value being reinforced
According to the theory, individuals base decisions on factors that are likely to lead to desired consequences (Gutman, 1982) • Consumers will make a selection that reinforces what they have deemed valuable (Klenosky, Templin and Troutman, 2001). • What the consumer deems as valuable is what is the end
PRODUCT RELETED KNOWLEDGE • Consumers have 3 levels of product related knowledge • Product attributes • The consequences or outcomes of using a product • The broad goals or values that may be satisfied by use of the product • This is what forms the hierarchy chain of association.
CONSEQUENCES VALUES ATTRIBUTE HEALTHY CHILD GOOD MOTHER PREVENTS CAVITY FLUORIDE
KINDS OF ATTRIBUTES • SEARCH VS EXPERIENCE • INTRINSIC ATTRIBUTES • EXTRINSIC ATTRIBUTES • PERFORMANCE ATTRIBUTES • ABSTRACT ATTRIBUTES
SEARCH VS EXPERIENCE ATTRIBUTES • These are attributes of a product that can be assessed before purchase, while experience attributes can only be assessed after purchase of a product e.g leaking diapers
INTRINSIC ATTRIBUTES • MANUFACTURING/MATERIAL ATTRIBUTES • These involve the physical attributes of a product. We therefore have to consider the manufacturing process that led to the production of the product. • This will therefore include the materials used in the production of the product • Various components are mixed together in the creation of a product • It therefore becomes difficult for the consumer to remove an ingredient from the mix • Manufacturers also add unique ingredients which will differentiate their product
FORM ATTRIBUTES • This includes the size and shape of the product. e.g. for some people when buying a computer, the form attributes matter e.g. its weight, size of screen etc.
EXTRINSIC ATTRIBUTES • Attributes added by the marketer to enhance the customers product use or consumption. • BRAND ATTRIBUTTES • This include the name of the product • This distinguishes a product from other products • Brand names enable a consumer to remember the key attributes of the product • Customers tend to buy products with the same products. Therefore if they like the attributes of the product they have used, they may end up buying other products of the same brand • Company name, logo are all examples of brand attributes
PACKAGING ATTRIBUTES • This will include the materials used for packaging, the shape of the package, in toothpaste it will also include the twist off cap or the flip top cap, labels containing brand name etc.
PRICE ATTRIBUTES • The consumers behavior is affected by the price of the product and also the price of the warranties, product enhancements, shipping, installation, replacement parts etc • Thus when talking of price it also includes the price of the associated services and parts
AUGUMENTED PRODUCT ATTRIBUTES • According to Ted Levitt (Harvard) Customers usually expect certain services to accompany the purchase of a product • These include product delivery, installations services, training, customer assistance, maintenance and repair • These are the services that a manufacturer or distributor provides to enhance a customer’s product use of consumption.
PERFORMANCE ATTRIBUTES • This applies to the way a product performs the function it is meant for. • For example if it is a diaper, the customer will be looking at whether it leaks, or whether it adequately keeps the wetness away from the skin of the infant • Both the intrinsic and extrinsic attributes determine the performance attributes of the product.
ABSTRACT ATTRIBUTES • ABSTRACT (multidimensional attributes) • Quality, durability, luxuriousness pf a product are referred to as abstract attributes • They are subject to the consumers judgment and are as a result of the summarizing of both the intrinsic and extrinsic attributes. • For example when we talk of “light taste” on a beverage, this is a multidimensional attribute because it reflects a number of unidimensional attributes e.g. sugar content, alcohol content, and color
ABSTRACT ATTRIBUTES cont. • Abstract attributes condense the information contained in several attributes into a single attribute. • There are 3 types of abstract attributes • Weighted multi attribute evaluation-performance, features, reliability, durability • User imagery-people already have an idea • Use situation attributes-when should the product/service be used.
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ATTRIBUTES Abstract attributes Performance attributes Intrinsic attributes Extrinsic attributes
CONSEQUENCES (BENEFITS) • Customers buy products that have attributes but what is important to them is the benefits they get from the product • No single product can give the consumer all the benefits they desire • Therefore the consumer must decide which is the most important benefit when they are purchasing a product
BENEFITS contd. • FUNCTIONAL- customer can use the product to do something that is perceived as necessary or desirable. • EXPERIENTIAL -involves physical sensation and emotional feelings that a customer feels when they use a product
FINANCIAL –when a customers spends money on a product, then they have less money to spend on other products. Some products reduce customer expenditure e.g. buying crest to prevent spending on dentist. • PSYCHOSOCIAL -this is how consuming a product makes the consumer feel about themselves. Consumption behavior can move consumer from their current self image closer to their ideal self image.
END STATES OF EXISTENCE (PERSONAL VALUES) • The customers decisions on the benefits depends on their personal values • These are defined as” the underlying beliefs that are shared by the members of a society and indicate how they should act, think and feel” • The consumer therefore believes that when they purchase products that comply with social norms then they will be accepted by people who share similar norms
Another factor is that when a consumer buys a product that conforms with social norms, then they feel that it makes them feel better about themselves (social acceptance and self esteem)
PERSONAL VALUES CONTINUED • BELONGING • SOCIAL RECOGNITION • LOVE • ACHIEVEMENT • FUN ENJOYMENT- EXCITEMENT • SECURITY • THE WELFARE OF FUTURE GENERATIONS • HAPPINESS
TERMINAL AND INSTRUMENTAL VALUES • Terminal values are key to the means end theory, whose aim is to understand the motivation that drive the consumers behavior • According to Milton Rokeach, a terminal value is “ an enduring belief that a specific mode of conduct or end state is personally or socially preferable to an opposite or converse mode of conduct or end state of existence” • The term instrumental value is used to designate a belief about a preferred mode of existence
TERMINAL VALUES(Rokeach’s Value Survey-18) • Comfortable life • Exciting life • Sense of accomplishment • Pleasure • Self respect • Social recognition • A world of peace • Equality • Freedom • True friendship • wisdom
INSTRUMENTAL VALUES • Ambitious • Broadminded • Cheerful • Courageous • Forgiving • Helpful • Independent • Obedient • Polite • Self-controlled
IMPORTANCE OF THE MEANS END THEORY TO CONSUMER DECISION MAKING • To the customer, the value comes first • E.g. a mother who value being a good mother, will want a healthy child, and to get a healthy child it is important that that child has no cavities and so to prevent cavities, then it is important to get a toothpaste with fluoride. • Fluoride itself has no meaning in and of itself • Fluoride assumes meaning for individual customers when the personal values of those customers invest fluoride with meaning.
This set of associations is a called a means-end chain because consumers see the product and its attributes as a means to an end • Desired ends involves satisfying the self relevant consequences and values • Means end approach implies that product attribute, per se, have little or no importance or relevance to the consumer
Attributes have meaning and value for consumers largely in terms of consequences they are perceived to bring about • The end consequences in a means end chain is often a personal goal or a life value the consumer is striving to achieve • Thus the means end chains of linked consequences are the basis for the evaluation of the attributes. (Is this attribute a good thing or a bad thing for me? How good or how bad?
Related to the focus consequences and outcomes is the accompanying focus on behavior • Most consequences associated with the attributes of a product occur either directly or indirectly as a function of behaviors performed by consumers • By themselves attributes cannot have consequences
Consumers must perform a behavior, particularly product usage behaviors, that then generate consequences • Attributes taken alone have no consequences and thus have no relevance • Consequences occur when consumer buys and consumes (or uses) the product and thereby experiences the consequences of use e.g. to experience the consequence of pleasurable taste and hunger one must first buy a candy bar, open the wrapper and eat the bar
If these behaviors are not performed the consequences will not occur • NOTE: consequences consumers experience are partly due to the consumption behavior of the consumer • Marketers will be interested in other types of consequences associated with candy consumption e.g. littering so they will be interested in other behaviors e.g. discarding the wrappers
The essence of the means end view of consumer decision making is that consumers make decision to solve problems (obtain desired consequences) and those consequences are relevant considerations in decision making because of their perceived relations with the goals or values that are salient in that decision context.
Thus in making decisions about which product or brand to buy, the consumer necessarily focus on consequences ( outcomes or experiences), rather than attributes • Products or product attributes, per se, are not inherently important to consumers • Consumers think about likely solutions to their problems when making purchase decisions
IMPORTANCE OF THE MEANS END THEORY TO THE MARKETER1. CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR The means-end approach can help marketing managers understand how and why consumers make purchase decisions and then use this understanding of customer motivation to guide their thinking about marketing strategy (FOCUS ON CUSTOMER)
Using the means-ends approach to develop marketing strategy begins by understanding how current customers see the personal relevance of a product category • This entails conducting a laddering interview that would produce a set of means-end chains obtained from various groups of customer
What is obtained is then used to form a map called a hierarchical value map (HVM) or consumer decision map. • The means end theory enables the marketer create a satisfied customer (Ted Levitt)
2.MARKET SEGMENTATION Means-end approach can be used to segment a market. Customers who possess various Means-Ends orientations would respond differently to market offerings. So they can be treated as different market segments
3. FOCUS ON BENEFITS • the means-end theory reflects the sequence in which important information is typically collected from customers in their personal interviews • Customers have to identify the product attribute that make that product unique • The customers is then asked to identify the benefit of that attribute
They are then made to identify the personal value they get from the product attribute • The marketer is therefore able to focus on what benefits the customers and this will be to his advantage. • Marketers must see themselves not as producing products but as providing customer creating value satisfactions.
4. ASSESSING MARKET TRENDS • Means and end theory asserts that product attributes are the anchors for the meanings that consumers find in products. • Product attributes yield benefits which move the consumers closer to their vision of the good life described by their personal values. • Through studying the customer decision maps, the marketer is able to establish the desires of the consumers and also establish market trends • This will then make it possible for the marketer to produce products which will be in line with the trends and the desires of the consumers.
5. CREATING SUSTAINED COMPETIVE SUPERIORITY • Positioning begins with the customers. • According to Peter Drucker the aim of the marketer is to satisfy the customer. • In doing so, the marketer should know what the consumer wants and the words that they use to express what they want • Focus should be on the consumer not on the competitor • Once this is done, then the marketer can use this to gain a competitive advantage /superiority over their competitors.
CONCLUSION • This theory therefore emphasizes on the behavior of the consumer and emphasizes on the attributes, consequences and personal values which are the end and are considered to be very important in the consumers decision making when purchasing a product or a service.
REFERENCES 1. Finley P. An application of Means End Theory to analyse the college selection of female athletes at an NCCA division 11 university Olson J, Reynold T, The means-end approach to Understanding consumer decision making. (2001) 2. Parry Mark, Strategic marketing management-Means-End approach. McGraw-Hill, New York, Chicago, 2001. 3. Percy L, A Woodside ed. Understanding consumer cognitive structure: Implication for advanced strategy and advanced consumer psychology. Volume 1 pp 77-90.Lexington, 1983. 4. Peter F.Drucker, The practice of management ( New York: Harper and Row, 1954). Websites: • www.wildernessinquiry.org-understanding means end theory for wilderness inquiry trips.