Consumer Behaviour dissonance

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Though humankind has undergone outstanding technological progress over the centuries, the progress in human social psychology remains barely perceptible. Empirical social principles and advice, as the quote from Epictetus considered here, seem to reflect current socio-psychological reality with the same credence that it enjoyed 2000 years ago…

Introduction


In modern theories of consumer behaviour, much stress is given on this particular sequence of events of first knowing one's self and then proceeding to make a purchase. Experts believe "that people purchase a product or brand only if these things are consistent with, enhance, or in some way fit well with the conception they have of themselves" (Ross, 1971, p. 38). Thus, self-image, or self-concept has found a central place in the works of many modern consumer behaviour theorists.
"Any bit of knowledge that a person has about himself or the environment is a "cognition," or "cognitive element."" (Wicklund, and Brehm 1976, 2). Self-cognition is not objective, but the sum total of subjective thoughts one has about one's self. It is taken as "the totality of the individual's thoughts and feelings having reference to him/her self as an object" (Rosenberg, 1979). Modern consumer behaviour theories postulate that a consumer who is not aware of his/her self, and fails to achieve "self-congruity" is bound to suffer in the act of purchasing a product from pre-choice anxiety, and/or post-choice regret arising from cognitive dissonance.
In theories that attribute a "brand" with personality (Sirgy, 1985), the same principles can well apply to the development of the brand image of a product, as they apply to the consumer's ...
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