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Psychological Models of Buying Behavior
There are many explanations for buying behaviour, among them, four are the psychological explanations of buying behavior. According to the learning model, human behavior is founded on many core ideas, including drives, stimuli, cues, reactions, and reinforcements, which define human needs and behavior to meet those needs. The psychoanalytic model attempts to address a significant weakness of the preceding stimulus-response model by including intervening factors such as family and social environment.
The Gestalt model, which provided important insights and a fresh perspective on human vision, and the Cognitive theory, which was able to give legitimate explanations for many previously unexplained elements of purchasing behavior, are two noteworthy contributions from the area of psychology.
People and their Psychological Models of Buying Behaviors
Following are the major psychological models of buying behaviors −
The Pavlovian Learning Model
A group of classical psychologists, including Pavlov, initially proposed the learning model. A drive is a solid internal sensation that urges activity in an individual. Stimuli are inputs that have the potential to arouse impulses or motivations. The way a person reacts to particular stimuli is determined by Cue configuration. Cues are signs or signals that operate as a stimulation to a particular drive. The way an individual reacts to stimuli is referred to as his reaction.
If a specific stimulus's reaction is "rewarding," it encourages the potential of a similar response when presented with the same stimulus or clues. In marketing, if a consumer purchases a product (response) in response to an informational cue such as advertising, the buyer's positive experience with the product enhances the likelihood that the reaction will be repeated the next time a need stimulus arises (reinforcement).
Because the arrangement of stimuli facing the organism is constantly changing, learned responses are generalized. This generalization may inspire the customer to take similar action, such as switching brands if his favorite brand is out of stock or he is introduced to a new brand or acquiring the idea that all whiteners are harsh on the cloth based on his experience with two brands of chemical whiteners.
Discrimination, on the other hand, narrows the gap between the cue and the resulting reaction. Frequent purchases of alternative brands and more good post-purchase thoughts about one of them allow the customer to discriminate more clearly between these alternatives. When presented with an identical cue configuration, he will be more particular about his response. The model gives essential insights into consumer behavior by demonstrating that human needs are the product of the interaction of drives, stimuli, reactions, and so on.
The marketer uses this understanding to increase the demand for a product by linking it with powerful motivations and delivering positive reinforcement. They could use generalization concepts to create a market for a new product by associating it with similar cues as the competitor and hoping to shift buyer loyalties. Alternatively, they could use generalization concepts to create a differentiated image for their product by associating it with dissimilar, strong drives.
The Psychoanalytic Model
According to the paradigm, human needs work at multiple levels of consciousness. His motivational wellsprings, embedded in these several layers, are not visible to the casual observer, nor does the individual completely comprehend them. They can only be analyzed by intense, specialized inquiry. Sigmund Freud, the founder of the Psychoanalytic school of thought, pioneered the method of rigorous observation and analysis to comprehend the complexity of personality and gave some insight into the primary cause for individual personality variations and resulting behavior.
Freud began with the premise that the kid enters the world with instinctive demands that others must satisfy. He attempts to satisfy his desires using primary and apparent tactics such as yelling, sobbing, grasping, etc. The agonizing realization that fast fulfilment of his desires is not attainable and the resulting frustration causes him to seek more nuanced methods of satisfying his needs. These natural urges are only partially defeated. His mentality becomes more sophisticated as he ages.
The id serves as a reservoir for innate needs and desires. The ego, the intellectual planning center that mediates unfettered desires and societal limitations, determines the manifestation of these needs and drives. The superego, a third portion of the brain that contains ideals, channels the gratifying of innate desires into socially acceptable outlets, avoiding the guilt associated with some of these wants.
Man is prone to feeling guilty about specific innate desires, particularly sexual desire. This causes him to repress them from his consciousness, either denying them or unconsciously channelling them in socially acceptable ways. While deflected by accepted rules of behavior, these cravings are never completely vanquished or extinguished. They occasionally emerge, depending on the delicate balance that the ego maintains between the impulsive d's overpowering desires and the super ego's intuiting, repressive might. According to Freud, libido, or sex, is one of the vital impulses.
The motivations for many behaviors may be ascribed to the sexual need presenting itself in obvious ways unintentionally. Other scholars, like Adler, hypothesized that other imprinted drives, such as the need for power, operate as potent motivators of behavior; however, like the impulses outlined by Freud, they present themselves in various behavioral patterns.
As a result, according to psychoanalytic thought, individual behavior is always complex. The intentions behind it are not apparent to a casual observer of overt behavior or the individual. For example, a sports automobile buyer may state that he purchased it because of its beauty and agility. Nonetheless, he may have subconsciously wanted to 'feel youthful or impress others with this more expensive trendy model. At a deeper level, the sports automobile may have been acquired to obtain the surrogate pleasure of unmet sexual strivings.
The Gestalt Model
This paradigm focuses on man and his needs. Based on controlled experiments, environment and on were able to provide compelling proof that individuals perceive and interpret the stimuli presented to them according to the organization of their own particular experiences. Gestalt theory is concerned primarily with the physical perception of stimuli since the term gestalt implies the form of a configuration. Expanding on and adapting the gestalt approach, Lewing proposed that man lives in a complex psychological field influenced by several factors. He stated that to develop a genuine theory of motivation, all of these variables must be recognized and appreciated.
According to him, human activity is fundamentally goal-directed. All individual behavior aims to achieve a stable organization of his psychic field through attempts to relieve stress, reconcile conflicts, and make sense of the environment in which he lives. As previously said, this model represented a step in advance in the study of perception and interpretation of individual stimuli, and it may have ramifications for the marketer in developing his marketing strategy, particularly his brand strategy.
The Cognitive Dissonance Explanation
The cognitive theory, precisely the notion of cognitive dissonance, has supplied a beneficial and sensible explanation for consumer behavior. The hypothesis has also been considered in our theoretical explanation of brand loyalty since it explains the trend toward consistent brand patronage to some extent.
The proponent of the Cognitive Dissonance Theory, Leon Festinger, hypothesized that −
The presence of dissonance (a condition of imbalance in the cognitive structure) is psychologically uncomfortable, leading the individual to minimize dissonance and establish consonance (i.e., balance)
When dissonance arises, the individual will actively strive to avoid events and information that contribute to it and attempt to lessen it.
An individual tries for equilibrium in his cognitive structure (his collection of ideas and dispositions regarding people, goods, events, and so on) and will work to alleviate stress to preserve this balance and make life more pleasurable. Discord (dissonance) can occur after acquiring a product, utilizing it, or hearing negative comments about it, especially if it is pricey. "The magnitude of the post-purchase decision is an increasing' function of the overall significance of the decision and the relative attractiveness of the unchosen alternatives."
When applied to everyday marketing scenarios, the theory interprets buying behavior as follows: when numerous choices present the buyer in his decision-making process, he is likely to suffer some anxiety, which gets more persistent after a commitment to purchase one of them is established. As commercials and word-of-mouth information emphasizing the characteristics of the rejected alternatives are viewed and received, he may have some reservations about the logic of his selection. The goods themselves may not live up to his expectations, adding to his already existing worry and causing what is known as postpurchase dissonance.
A group of classical psychologists, including Pavlov, initially proposed the learning model. Cues are signs or signals that operate as a stimulation to a particular drive. If a specific stimulus's reaction is "rewarding," it encourages the potential of a similar response when presented with the same stimulus or clues. These natural urges are only partially defeated. According to him, human activity is fundamentally goal-directed.
All individual behavior aims to achieve a stable organization of his psychic field through attempts to relieve stress, reconcile conflicts, and make sense of the environment in which he lives. As previously said, this model represented a step in advance in the study of perception and interpretation of individual stimuli, and it may have ramifications for the marketer in developing his marketing strategy, particularly his brand strategy.
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