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Critically consider the ways in which economists have recognised the psychological, social and corporate influences on consumer choice - Essay Example

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The concept of consumer choice in a free market economy is defined as the greatest degree of freedom available to a consumer to buy whatever he/she wants subject to the purchasing power and the laws of the country. Economists have identified three classes of influence on the…
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Critically consider the ways in which economists have recognised the psychological, social and corporate influences on consumer choice

the use of a popular person like an actor or talk-show host/hostess. Social influences are often attributed to class and culture such as those associated with the consumption of luxury goods. Corporate influences are said to be one of the most influential because they invariably come from the very manufacturers and sellers of those goods. For example businesses adopt a variety of strategies or/and sales tactics including those associated with benchmarking products and creating brand loyalties through value creation (Hallberg & Ogilvy, 1995).
Consumers have to make a choice between two or more goods before making an actual purchase. In a free market economy where price mechanism alone allocates scarce resources consumer choice is naturally assumed to be free from any influences because depending on the purchasing ability of the consumer he/she might decide to buy a good at its market price. However the contrary is much truer than this theoretical economic explanation to the consumer’s behavior. In the first instance in a free market economy the producer has an equal amount of freedom to use marketing tactics to attract the attention of the potential customer. Customers are influenced by a variety of sales tactics that producers use in order to increase sales volumes. Psychological, social and corporate influences are the most predominant among them.
Economists identify psychological influences such as those related to emotions, impulse or/and ostentation. According to economists emotional involvement in consumer choice though might not be measurable, cannot be ruled out altogether (Luce, Bettman and Payne, 2001). As a result every consumer is assumed to be influenced by positive and negative emotional factors like personal memories associated with a product. Michael Jackson related merchandise and memorabilia for instance have such an emotional impact on many potential buyers because he is associated with the firmament of pop music. When ... Read More
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