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Glossary of

Consumer Behavior Terms

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Abstract information: Pallid information, lacking concreteness and communication effectiveness.

Absolute threshold: The lowest level at which a stimulus can be detected 50% of the time.

Acceptable risk: The level of risk that a consumer will tolerate when purchasing a product or service.

Acculturation: The difficult task of learning a new culture.

Achievement motivation: The motivation identified by David McClelland to strive for success and to perform
up to one's capabilities.

Acquisition phase: The first of three phases of consumer buying-acquisition, consumption, and disposition. It is
associated with search and selection of goods and services.

Actual product performance: A consumer's perception of the level of performance displayed by a product.
Actual performance is compared to expected performance to determine product satisfaction.

Actual state: The state of being experienced by a consumer at any particular point in time. When the actual
diverges sufficiently from the desired state, need recognition is said to occur.

Adaptation: A process in which an organism has repeated experience with a stimulus and habituates to it.

Adaptation level: The level of intensity of a stimulus to which a consumer has become accustomed or adapted

Advertising clutter: Too many ads on TV or radio impeding the ability of consumers to remember the ads.

Advertising substantiation: The concept, developed by the Federal Trade Commission, that companies must
provide evidence for the truth of their advertising claims.

Advertising wear-out: Occurs when consumers are overexposed to an advertisement, resulting in decreased

Affect: A class of mental phenomena uniquely characterized by a consciously experienced, subjective feeling
state, commonly accompanying emotions and moods.

Affect and CS/D: The concept that the level of consumer satisfaction is influenced by the positive and negative
affective responses elicited by a product after its purchase and during use.

Affect intensity: The stable tendency of some people to react more strongly than others to an emotion-producing

Affect-referral heuristic: A rule of thumb in which a consumer chooses a product based upon an overall
recollection of his or her emotional response of an alternative.

African- American subculture: The subculture in the United States composed of dark-skinned people whose
ancestry can be traced to Africa.
Asian-American subculture: The fastest-growing ethnic subculture in the United States.

AIO statements: Used in psychographic inventories to obtain information on consumers' activities, interests,
and opinions.

Altruistic Marketing: A field of study that (1) researches the causes of negligent consumer behavior and (2)
applies the findings to develop treatment and/or preventive methods to reduce the maladaptive actions of

Alternative evaluation: The formation of benefits and attitudes regarding choice alternatives.

Anchoring and adjustment: A judgmental heuristic that is used to make an estimate of the level of a stimulus
on a scale. The level is estimated by starting at some reference point and then adjusting away from it.

Antecedent states: The temporary physiological and mood states that a consumer brings to a consumption

Applied behavior analysis: A process in which environmental variables are manipulated to alter behavior.

Articulation: A component of consumer knowledge that describes how finely a person can discriminate
differences along a dimension.

Aspiration group: A group to which an individual would like to belong. If it is impossible for the individual to
belong to the group, it becomes a symbolic group for the person.

Assimilation effect: The idea that a communication may be viewed as more congruent with the position of the
receiver than it really is because it falls within the latitude of acceptance.

Associationist school: Eighteenth-century learning theorists who investigated such phenomena as the serial-
position effect and paired-associate learning.

Atmospherics: The process through which consumer reactions may be influenced by the design of buildings
anti spaces, including the interior space; the layout of the aisles; the texture of the carpets and walls; the scents,
colors, shapes, and sounds experienced by customers.

ATSCI: (attention to social comparison information) a scale that measures the disposition to conform.

Attention: The allocation of cognitive capacity to an object or task, so that information is consciously processed.

Attention stage: The stage of information processing in which a person allocates cognitive capacity to a

Attitude: The amount of affect or feeling for or against a stimulus.

Attitude toward the ad: A consumer's positive and negative feelings held toward a particular advertisement.

Attitude toward the behavior: A consumer's positive and negative feelings held toward engaging in a
particular behavior.

Attitude-toward-the-object model: A model of consumer choice based upon how consumers combine their
beliefs about product attributes to form attitudes about various brand alternatives.

Attribute-benefit belief: A belief about the extent to which an attribute provides a specific benefit.

Attribute importance: A person’s general assessment of the significance of an attribute for products and
services of a certain type.
Attribute-object belief: The belief that an object possesses a particular attribute.

Attributes: The characteristics or features that an object may or may not have.

Attribution theory: Identifies the various means through which people determine the causes of action of
themselves, others, and objects.

Augmenting principle: A principle from one of the attribution theory models stating that the role of a given
cause in producing a given effect is discounted if other plausible causes are also present.

Autonomic decisions: Decisions of lesser importance that either the husband or wife may make independently

Availability heuristic: The concept that people may assess the probability of an event based on the ease with
which the event can be brought to mind.

Availability-valence hypothesis:. The hypothesis that judgments depend on the favorableness of information
available in memory.

Awareness set: A subset of the total universe of potential brands and products available of which a consumer is

Baby-boom generation: The large post-World War 11 group of people born between 1946 and 1964

Baby bust: A period after 1964 when fertility rates plunged far below the replacement level, resulting in fewer
children being born in the United States.

Back translation: A process involving successive translations of a message back- and forth between languages
by different translators. In this way, subtle and not-so-subtle differences in meaning can be located.

Balance theory: A type of cognitive consistency approach in which people are viewed as maintaining a logical
and consistent set of interconnected beliefs.

Basic exchange equation: Profit = Rewards - Costs.

Behavioral economics: An approach to economics based upon the investigation of the behavior of individual
consumers. An example is the use of survey research methods to assess the economic confidence of consumers.

Behavioral influence hierarchy: The proposal that, in some instances, the hierarchy of effects begins with a
behavior, followed by the formation of beliefs and attitudes.

Behavioral influence perspective: The view that strong situational or environmental mental forces may propel
a consumer to engage in buying behavior without having formed either feelings or affect about the object of the

Behavioral Influence Techniques: Techniques that cause people to comply to requests by making use of strong
norms of behavior.

Behavioral intentions: The intentions of consumers to behave in a particular way with regard to the acquisition,
disposition and use of products and services.

Behavioral intentions model: A consumer choice model that states that behavior results from the formation of
specific intentions to behave.

Behavioral learning: A process in which experience with the environment leads to a relatively permanent
change in behavior or the potential for a change in behavior.
Behavioral segmentation: A complementary approach to using demographic variables to segment the market
by dividing consumers into homogeneous groups based on various aspects of their buying behavior.

Beliefs: The cognitive knowledge people have of the relations among attributes, benefits, and objects.

Bem sex-role inventory: An inventory for exploring gender roles. It identifies three possible roles- masculine,
feminine, and psychologically androgynous.

Benefit segmentation: The division of the market into relatively homogeneous groups of consumers based upon
similarities of needs.

Benefits: The outcomes that product or service attributes may provide.

Binationals: A situation in which product components are made in one country but the product is assembled in
another, or in which a product is designed in one country but made in another.

Binational products: Products that are mad in one country and assembles in another country, or designed in one
country and manufactured in another.

Bogies: Fear rumors that may spook the marketplace.

Bookend ads: Advertisements placed in the first and last position of a series of commercials.

Boomerang effect: Occurs when a message results in a change of attitude opposite in direction to that intended.

Brand commitment: The emotional-psychological attachment to a brand within a product class.

Brand expectations: The expectations that a consumer forms regarding the performance of a brand.

Brand knowledge: The amount of experience with and information that a person has about particular products
or services. Consumers possessing greater amounts of knowledge can think about a product across a number of
dimensions and make finer distinctions among brands.

Brand loyalty: The biased behavioral response, expressed to a degree to which a customer holds a positive
attitude toward a brand, has a commitment to it and intends to continue purchasing it in the future.

Butterfly curve: The curve showing that the preference for a stimulus is at its greatest level at points just higher
or lower than the adaptation level.

Buyer's regret: A postacquisition phenomenon in which the preference for a chosen alternative actually falls
below that of a rejected alternative.

Buying unit: The individual, family, or group that makes a purchase decision.

CAD model: A personality scale developed to measure the interpersonal orientation of consumers. CAD stands
for compliance, aggression, and detachment.

Central cues: Those ideas and supporting data that bear directly on the quality of the arguments developed in
the message.

Central route to persuasion: In high-involvement information processing, a path to persuasion in which a

person diligently processes the arguments of the source of information.

Channels: The media through which information flows.

Childhood consumer socialization: Processes by which young people acquire skills, knowledge, and attitudes
relevant to their functioning as consumers in the marketplace.

Choice: The process in which consumers make a choice between two or more alternative courses of action.

Choice uncertainty: The degree of uncertainty about which of several brands to select.

Classic fashion trend: A fashion trend in which particular looks become a classic, such as the blue pin-striped

Classical conditioning: A type of learning in which a conditioned stimulus is paired with an unconditioned
stimulus through repetition, the conditioned stimulus will eventually elicit a conditioned response.

Closure: A principle of perceptual organization that describes the tendency of people to fill in missing
information to create a holistic

Cluster analysis: The use of demographic variables to identify where groups of neighborhoods with households
of similar consumers arc located geographically.

Clutter: An overabundance of advertisements that decreases communications effectiveness.

Cognitive complexity: A personality characteristic that describes the degree of structural intricacy of the
organizing schemas used by different groups of consumers to code and store information in memory.

Cognitive consistency: The tendency of people to maintain a logical and consistent set of interconnected

Cognitive dissonance: An unpleasant emotional state that is felt when there is a logical inconsistency among
cognitive elements.

Cognitive learning: The process through which people form associations among concepts, learn sequences of
concepts, solve problems and gain insights.

Cognitive responses: The thoughts that consumers may develop in response to messages.

Cognitive personality theories: Personality theories positing that individual differences result from variations
in how people process information, think, and learn.

Commitment: The degree to which an attitude position can be changed. As the level of commitment to an
attitude position increases, it becomes more difficult to change the attitude.

Communication: The use of a sign to convey meaning. A sign may be a verbalization, an utterance, a body
movement, a written word, a picture, an odor, a touch, or even stones on the ground to denote a property

Communications model: A model stating that sources encode messages that travel through a channel and are
processed by receivers, who then provide feedback to the source.

Comparative appraisal: The consumer's evaluation of his or her own relative standing with respect to an
attitude, belief, ability, or emotion through observation of the behavior of appropriate reference others.

Comparative messages: Messages in which the communicator compares the positive and negative aspects of
his or her position to the positive and negative aspects of a competitor's position.

Comparison level: The minimum level of positive outcome (profit) that an individual feels he or she deserves
from an exchange.
Comparison level for alternatives: The lowest level of outcomes a person will accept in light of available
alternative opportunities.

Comparison level for outcomes: The minimum level of positive outcomes a person believes he or she deserves
from in exchange.

Compensatory models of choice: A class of choice models in which consumers are viewed as analyzing each
alternative in a broad evaluative fashion. A choice is said to be compensatory when high ratings on some
attributes may compensate for low ratings on other attributes.

Competitive positioning: The positioning of a product relative to key competitors on important attributes.

Complaint behavior: The overt actions taken by consumers to bring their product or service dissatisfaction to
the attention of others.

Complementary activities: Activities that naturally take place together.

Complex exchange: An exchange that involves a set of three or more actors enmeshed in a set of mutual

Compliance: The act of conforming to the wishes of another person or group without necessarily accepting the
group's dictates.

Comprehension: The process of making sense of stimuli so that the message may be understood.

Comprehension stage: The stage of information processing in which the person organizes and interprets
information in order to obtain meaning from it.

Compulsive consumption: Consumption marked by an impulse or urge to engage in behavior that may be
harmful to the consumer while simultaneously denying its possible negative effects.

Compulsive purchases: Purchases marked by an impulse or urge to engage in behavior that may be harmful to
the consumer while simultaneously denying its possible negative effects.

Compound traits: Predispositions that result from the effects of multiple elemental traits, a person’s learning
history and the cultural environment.

Concept testing: The pre-testing of the product idea.

Conditioned response: The response elicited by the conditioned stimulus when classical conditioning occurs.

Conditioned stimulus: A previously neutral stimulus that, when paired with an unconditioned stimulus, may
elicit a conditioned response.

Conformity: A change in behavior or belief as a result of real or imagined group or individual pressure.

Conjunctive rule: A type of choice heuristic in which the consumer sets minimum cutoffs on each product
attribute. If the product rating falls below the minimum cutoff level oil any attribute, the product is rejected from
further consideration.

Conservation behavior: Action Consumers take to conserve resources, including curtailment behaviors,
maintenance behaviors, and efficiency behaviors.

Consideration set: The set of alternative brands that the consumer regards as acceptable for further
Consumer actions: Those behaviors in which consumers engage in the acquisition, consumption, and
disposition of goods, services, and ideas.

Consumer acquisitions: The goods, services, and ideas that consumers obtain in the marketplace.

Consumer behavior: The study of the decision-making units and the processes involved in acquiring,
consuming, and disposing of goods, services, experiences, and ideas.

Consumer behaviors: consist of all the actions taken by consumers related to acquiring, disposing, and using
products and services.

Consumer beliefs: The cognitive knowledge people have of the relations among attributes, benefits, and objects.

Consumer complaint behavior: A multiple set of actions triggered by perceived dissatisfaction with a purchase

Consumer decision making: The analysis made in choosing between two or more alternative acquisitions and
the processes that take place before and after the choice.

Consumer environment: It is composed of factors existing independently of individual consumers and firms
that influence the exchange process.

Consumer ethnocentrism: A scale measuring the tendency of consumers to prefer to purchase U.S.-made

Consumer expectations: A person's prior beliefs about what should happen in a given situation.

Consumer incentives: The products, services, information, and even other people that are perceived to satisfy a

Consumer information processing: The process in which consumers are exposed to information, attend to it,
comprehend it, place it in memory, and retrieve it for later use.

Consumer involvement: The perceived personal importance and/or interest consumers attach to the acquisition,
consumption and disposition of a good, a service or an idea.

Consumer knowledge: The amount of experience and information that a person has about particular products or

Consumer marketing: The marketing of a good or service by one consumer to another.

Consumer performance: An event in which a consumer and a marketer act as performers and/or as audience in
a situation in which obligations and standards exist.

Consumer primacy: The concept that the consumer should be at the center of the marketing effort.

Consumer rights: The rights, identified by John F. Kennedy, of safety, information, redress, and choice. More
recently some have suggested that the right to health care and the right to a home should be added to the list.

Consumer ritual: Standardized sequences of actions that are periodically repeated.

Consumer satisfaction/ dissatisfaction: The general feelings that a consumer develops about a product or
service after its purchase and use.

Consumer search behavior: All actions consumers take to identify and obtain information on the means of
solving a problem.
Consumer self-control: The ability of people to avoid making purchases that involve pleasure in the present,
but pain in the future.

Consumer situations: The temporary environmental and personal factors that form the context within which a
consumer activity occurs at a particular place and time.

Consumer well-being: The extent to which an individual's needs and wants are satisfied.

Consumerism: The movement made up of activities of government, business, independent organizations, and
concerned consumers that are designed to protect the rights of consumers.

Consumption amount. The amount of a good that is consumed. For example, how many ounces of a soft drink
is consumed.

Consumption experience: The cognitions and feelings the consumer experiences during the use of a product or

Consumption frequency: The frequency with which a product or service is consumed or used.

Consumption purpose: The reason for using a product. That is, some products can be used for multiple
purposes. Thus, baking soda can be used as an antacid, to make bread rise, and to reduce odors.

Consumption phase: A researcher's analysis of how consumers actually use a product or service and the
experiences that the consumer obtains from such use.

Context: The background factors within which consumer behavior occurs.

Context effects: The concept that the background or context in which stimuli are embedded will influence the
perception of the stimuli. Thus the background programming in which an advertisement is placed may influence
the interpretation of the advertisement.

Contingencies of reinforcement: The temporal relationship between a behavior and its reinforcers or punishers
that acts to shape consumer behavior.

Continuous innovations: A modification of an existing product to improve performance, taste, reliability, and
so forth. Continuous innovations result in few, if any, consumer life-style changes.

Contracted performance: Both the consumer and marketer have minimal interactions. It occurs with low-
involvement goods.

Country of origin: The country from which a good or service originates.

Contrast effects: Occur when the attitude statement falls into the latitude of rejection, so that it is perceived as
more opposed to the receiver's position than perhaps it really is.

Conventions: Norms that describe how to act in everyday life.

Corporate social responsibility: The idea that business has an obligation to help society with its problems by
offering resources.

Corrective advertising: Advertising that is mandated by a federal agency to correct consumer impressions that
were formed by previously misleading advertising.

Cresive norms: Norms embedded in the culture that include three types: conventions, mores, and customs.

Cross-cultural analysis: The study of foreign cultures and their values, attitudes, languages, and customs.
Crowding: Unpleasant feelings that people experience when they perceive that densities are too high and that
their control of the situation has been reduced acceptable levels.

Cultural ethnocentricity: The feeling among some consumers that the values, beliefs, and ways of doing things
as specified by one's own culture are "right," "correct," and generally better than those of other cultures.

Cultural identification: A feeling of attachment to the society in which a person prefers to live.

Cultural meanings: Cultural ideas transferred to consumers through material goods and rituals.

Cultural rituals: Standardized sequences of actions that are periodically repeated. They have some purpose and
generally have a beginning, middle, and end. They provide meaning and involve the use of cultural symbols.

Cultural symbols: Entities that represent the shared ideas and concepts of a culture.

Cultural values: They represent the shared meanings ideal end-states.

Culture: A set of socially acquired behavior patterns transmitted symbolically through language and other
means to the members of a particular society. It is a way of life.

Culture versus nation: A nation is a state that may contain a culture. A culture is a way of life that may extend
far beyond national borders.

Customs: Handed down from generation to generation, customs refers to basic actions such as the ceremonies
held and the roles played by the sexes.

Cyclical fashion trend: The adoption of styles that are progressively more extreme in one direction or another.
Examples include skirt lengths and tie widths.

Deceptive advertising: An advertisement may be deemed deceptive if it has the "capacity to deceive a
measurable segment of the public."

Decision context: Situational or extrinsic factors that dictate the options available to the decision maker.

Decision-making perspective: Occurs when consumers move through a series of rational steps when making a
purchase. These steps include problem recognition, search, alternative evaluation, choice, and postacquisition

Decision process: The steps through which consumers move when purchasing a product or service, including
problem recognition, search, alternative evaluation, choice, and postacquisition evaluation.

Decreasing marginal utility: The concept that, as a consumer obtains more of something, each additional unit
brings less utility or satisfaction.

Defense mechanisms: Psychological logical adjustments made by people to keep themselves from recognizing
personality qualities or motives that might lower self-esteem or heighten anxiety.

Delay-payment effect: This effect occurs when customers are encouraged to buy a good or service in the
present and are allowed to pay for it at a later date.

Demand curve shift: The shift of the demand curve to the right or left.

Demand elasticity: The variation in quantity demanded of a good that is caused by changes in the price of that
good. For example, an elastic demand curve results in small changes in price, causing large changes in quantity
Demarketing: Attempts by regulatory agencies and non-profit organizations to reduce the frequency of
consumer behaviors that have a negative impact on the consumer or society.

Demographic characteristics: Age, sex, income, religion, marital status, education, etc.

Demographic variables: Characteristics of various groups of people as assessed by such factors as age, sex,
income, religion, marital status, nationality, education, family size, occupation, and ethnicity.

Density: How closely packed consumers are in a particular situational context.

Depth interviews: Long, probing, one-on-one interviews to identify hidden reasons for purchasing products and

Desired state: The preferred state that a consumer would like to achieve. When differences between the desired
state and the actual state are sufficiently large, a need state is said to exist.

Detached nuclear family: Pattern in which children from middle-class families tend to strike out on their own
to form families away from their parents.

Difference threshold: The minimum amount of difference in the intensity of a stimulation that can be detected
50% of the time.

Diffusion: The process by which innovative ideas, products and services spread through the consumer

Dimensionality: A type of consumer knowledge referring to the number of different ways that a person can
think about something.

Direct comparative advertisements: Advertisements in which one brand is specifically compared to another.

Direct influence of attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors: The concept that attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors may be
formed directly.

Discontinuous innovations: Innovations that produce major changes in the life-styles of consumers.

Discounting principle: The idea from attribution theory that people will examine the environmental pressures
that impede or propel a particular action. When a person moves with the environmental pressures, little
understanding of the person's true motivations can be gained; therefore, the information is discounted.

Discrete exchange: A one-time interaction in which money is paid for a commodity. Discrete exchanges are
short, one-time purchases that do not involve the creation of a relationship.

Discretionary expenditures: Expenditures that can be postponed or eliminated.

Discriminative stimuli: Stimuli that only occur in the presence of a reinforcer.

Disjunctive rule: A choice heuristic in which an option is judged acceptable if any of its attributes surpass a
cutoff level.

Disposition phase: The phase of postacquisition. in which the consumer determines what to do with an
acquisition after it has been used.

Dissociative group: A reference group with whom the person does not wish to be associated.

Dissonance: An imbalanced state that results when a logical inconsistency exists among cognitive elements.
Divestment rituals: Rituals performed to erase the meaning associated with the previous owner of a good (e.g.,
thoroughly cleaning a new home prior to moving in).

Dogmatism: A personality characteristic marked by closed-mindedness and rigidity in the, approach to the
social environment.

Domain-specific values: Beliefs pertaining to more concrete consumption activities- for example that
manufacturers should give prompt service, guarantee their products, help eliminate environmental pollution and
be truthful.

Door-in-the-face technique: A compliance technique that involves the requester first making a very large
request, which is usually refused by the target. This request is then followed by a moderate request, which is
more often complied with than if no large request were made.

Double jeopardy: Occurs when a less popular brand, as defined by market share, also has less brand loyalty
among its customers.

Drama: An advertising technique of indirect address in which the characters speak to each other rather than to
the audience.

Dramatistic performance: Both the consumer and the marketer know that a show is occurring, and each is alert
to the other’s role.

Drawing conclusions: A message strategy in which the presenter draws the conclusions of the message for the

Drive: An affective state in which a person experiences emotions and physiological arousal.

Dyadic exchange: An exchange that takes place between two parties.

Dynamic continuous innovations: Innovations that involve some major change in an existing product and
minor changes in the behavior of consumers.

East Asia: Composed of Japan, Korea, China, and Southeast Asia, the region has over 26% of the world's
population and is the dominant exporter of automobiles, electronics, and computer chips.

Eastern Europe: The landmass stretching from the eastern border of Germany to the shores of the Pacific
Ocean, composed of people as diverse as the European Czechs and the Mongoloid people of far eastern Siberia.

Economic cycle: The cycle that traces the flow of an economy. It has four phases–peak, recession, trough, and

Economic environment: The set of factors involving monetary, natural, and human resources that influence the
behavior of individuals and groups.

Economic optimism-pessimism: The reactions of consumers to various economic and personal events that
result in the presence or absence of feelings of economic confidence.

Ego: The component of the personality defined in psychoanalytic theory as standing for reason and good sense
and as following the reality principle.

Elaboration likelihood model (ELM): A model proposing that the route to persuasion depends on the
involvement of the consumer. The highly involved consumer engages in greater amounts of information
processing than the less involved consumer.
Elemental Traits: The most basis underlying predispositions of individuals that arise from genetics and early
learning history.

Elimination-by-aspects heuristic: A choice heuristic in which consumers rank attributes in order. Alternatives
are eliminated if they do not possess the first attribute. Those alternatives left are then evaluated on the next
attribute, and so forth, until only one alternative remains.

Emotional dissatisfaction: A postacquisition state that occurs when the actual performance is perceived to be
lower than the expected performance.

Emotional satisfaction: A postacquisition state that occurs when the actual performance exceeds the expected

Enacted norms: Norms that are explicitly expressed, sometimes in the form of laws. An example would be on
which side of the road you drive a car.

Enacted Performance: Both the consumer and the marketer have significant latitude to place blame for the
outcome of the transaction.

Encoding: The process of transferring information from short-term to long-term memory for permanent storage.

Enculturation: The process of learning one's own culture.

Enduring involvement: Occurs when consumers show a consistent high level of interest in a product and
frequently spend time thinking about the product.

Environmental analysis: The assessment of the forces and institutions external to the firm and of how these
may influence the marketing effort.

Environmental influence factors: Those factors outside the individual that affect individual consumers,
decision making units and marketers.

Environmental level of analysis: Analysis of those factors outside of the person that influence consumer
behavior, such as the effects of situations, groups, culture, subcultures, and the regulatory environment.

Equity: Occurs when the ratio of the outcomes and inputs is perceived by one party to an exchange to equal the
ratio of the outcomes and inputs of the other party to the exchange.

Equity theory: Holds that people will analyze the ratio of their outcomes and inputs to the ratio of the outcomes
and inputs of the partner in an exchange.

Ethical dilemma: A decision that involves the trade-off of lowering one's personal values in exchange for
increased organizational and personal profits.

Ethical exchange: Occurs when both parties know the full nature of the agreement, neither party intentionally
misrepresents or omits relevant information, and neither party unduly influences the other through the use of

Ethical exchange characteristics: The things that must occur for an ethical exchange to take place, such as both
parties knowing the full nature of an agreement before entering into it.

Ethics: The study of normative judgments concerned with what is morally right and wrong, good and bad.

Ethics matrix: A matrix that identifies when ethical problems may occur. Such a matrix is based upon
exchanges of information between consumers and businesses.
Ethnicity: A group bound together by tie so of cultural homogeneity.

Ethnocentrism: The universal tendency for people to view their own group as the center of the universe, to
interpret other social units from the perspective of their own group, and to reject persons who are culturally
dissimilar similar.

Euroconsumers: Consumers in Western Europe who supposedly share common desires for a broad range of
goods and services. This assumption is incorrect.

Even-a-penny-will-help technique: A compliance technique in which a person makes a request and then states
that any contribution, no matter how paltry, would. help.

Evoked set: Consists of those brands and products recalled from long-term memory that are acceptable for
further consideration.

Exchange: The transfer of something tangible or intangible, actual or symbolic, between two or more social

Exchange process: A process in which resources are transferred between two parties.

Exchange rituals: Rituals in which products or services are exchanged among consumers.

Exit behavior: Refers to the consumer choice to either leave a relationship or to lower consumption levels of the
good or service.

Expectancy confirmation: Results when the performance of a product is perceived to meet a consumer's

Expectancy disconfirmation: Results when the performance of a product fails to meet a consumer's

Expectancy disconfirmation model: A model of consumer satisfaction/dissatisfaction based upon whether a

brand meets or exceeds consumer expectations.

Expectations: A person's prior beliefs about what should happen in a given situation.

Expected product performance: The level of performance anticipated of a product or service by a consumer.

Experiential hierarchy: The hierarchy of effects in which affect occurs first, followed by behavior and then
belief formation.

Experiential perspective: In some instances consumers do not make purchases according to a strictly rational
decision-making process. They buy certain products and cervices in order to have fun, create fantasies or feel
desired emotions.

Exposure: The initial information-processing stage, in which consumers receive information through their

Exposure stage: A stage in information processing in which consumers receive information through their

Expressive needs: Desires by consumers to fulfill social and/or aesthetic requirements.

Expressive role: A role found in many groups, in which a person helps maintain the group and provides
emotional support for its members.
Extended family: Consists of the nuclear family plus other relatives, such as parents of the husband and wife.

Extended self: The concept that possessions may become 1 part of the self-concept and, therefore, extend the
self to include impersonal entities.

External attribution: An attribution of the cause of action to some factor outside of an individual, such as
attributing the reason for an endorsement to the money paid to the endorser.

External exchange: An exchange between parties that are in separate groups, such as between two families or
two firms.

External roles: Involves communications and involvement with people outside of the family.

External search: The consumer's soliciting information from outside sources rather than from his or her

Extinction: A gradual reduction in the frequency of occurrence of an operant behavior that results from a lack of
reinforcement of the response.

Fads: Temporary fashion or other trends followed by a group.

Family decision stages: The steps in the decision process used by a family to purchase products or services.

Family life cycle: The idea that families may move through a series of stages in a developmental fashion.

Fashion: A set of behaviors temporarily adopted by a people because they are perceived to be socially
appropriate for the time and situation.

Fear appeals: A type of message in which the communication is designed to create some level of fear in the
target audience.

Feelings: The affective responses and emotions that consumers have.

Fertility rate: The number of children born to the average woman during her lifetime.

Figure-ground: A principle of perception whereby the figure is the object observed moving against the ground.
The ground is the context or background within which the figure is observed.

Focus groups: Small number of consumers (usually 6 to 10), interacting in an open ended fashion with the
assistance of a moderator to provide information on their beliefs and attitudes about specific topics.

Foot-in-the-door technique: A compliance technique that operates through the influencer making two request;
the first, a small request, is followed by a moderately sized second request.

Forgetting: The inability to recall from memory some desired piece of information. Forgetting occurs when
either the retrieval or the response generation process breaks down.

Formal exchange: an explicit written, or verbal contract. This will frequently occur in external exchanges.

Formal group: A group whose organization and structure are defined in writing.

Framing: A process in which a person evaluates a stimulus change as occurring from either a loss or a gain
position. Framing has been found to influence risk-taking behavior.

Fraudulent symbol: A material good that is stripped of class symbolism when its ownership is diffused across
levels of the class hierarchy.
Free riding: An act whereby a consumer obtains product information from sales personnel and then uses the
information to make a purchase from a low-cost discount store that does not offer personal service.

Frequency heuristic: The rule of thumb used by consumers in some low-involvement settings, in which the
liking for a brand is based merely on the number of positive and negative attributes associated with it.

Functions of attitudes: The concept that attitudes exist for a reason, that is, to help people interact more
effectively with the environment.

Fundamental attribution error: The tendency of people to attribute the cause of a person's actions to that
person's disposition and personality.

Gatekeeper: An individual who has the ability to control information to a decision maker.

Generation X: The post babyboom group born between 1965 and 1980.

Generation Y: The 72 million children of the baby boomers, the first of whom will reach adulthood in the year
2000. They represent 28 % of the current population.

Generic decision-making model: It identifies the stages though which consumers move when making

Geodemographics: The use of demographic variables to identify where consumers with similar buying patterns
are geographically concentrated.

Geographic segmentation: The segmentation of a market into homogeneous groups of consumers with similar
needs and wants based on Geography.

Gestalt psychologists: An influential group of psychologists prominent during the early twentieth century who
believed that biological and psychological events do not influence behavior in isolation from each other.

Global attitude measures: A direct measurement of the overall affect and feelings held by a consumer
regarding an object.

Global marketer: A marketer who attempts to develop "one sight, one sound, and one sell" for its products.

Global values: Enduring beliefs about desired states of existence or modes of behavior.

Goal-directed action: Behavior directed toward obtaining an incentive object, such as a product or service.

Goal-directed behavior: Actions directed toward obtaining goods, services, or ideas that will decrease the gap
between a desired and an actual state.

Goods: Tangible products.

Gravitational model: The concept that trading areas act like planets, attracting outside shoppers in proportion to
the relative populations of the towns in question and to the square of the inverse of the distance between the

Grooming rituals: An individual's acts to ensure that special, perishable properties resident in clothing,
hairstyles, and looks are maintained.

Group: A set of individuals who interact with one another over some period of time and who share some
common need or goal.
Group polarization phenomenon: The tendency of groups to be either more risky or more cautious than
individuals when making decisions.

Group shift: The tendency of group decisions to show either more or less risk-taking propensities than the
average of the decisions of the individuals in the group.

Habitual purchases: Purchases that occur as a result of a habit.

Halo effect: The concept that positive or negative feelings about one characteristic will generalize to influence
feelings about other, possibly unrelated, characteristics.

Hedonic consumption: The consumption of products and services based primarily on the desire to experience
pleasure and happiness.

Hedonism: The desire to gain pleasure through the senses.

Heuristic models of choice: Models of choice in which consumers take shortcuts in information processing to
make decision making less complex.

Heuristics: Simple rules of thumb people use to make estimates of probabilities and values.

Hierarchical models of choice: Models of choice in which the consumer is viewed as comparing alternatives on
attributes one at a time.

Hierarchies of effects: Various models that explain the order in which beliefs, feelings, and behavior occur.

High culture: Culture that is exclusive in style, content, and appeal. It frequently harks back to the "old masters"
of art, theater, music, and literature.

High-involvement decision making: The decision process that occurs when consumers perceive high personal
importance in a decision. It is marked by extended decision making and high levels of information processing.

High-involvement hierarchy: The hierarchy of effects in which, belief formation occurs first, followed by the
creation of affect, followed by a behavior.

Higher-order conditioning: Occurs when a conditioned stimulus acts to classically condition another,
previously neutral stimulus.

Hindsight bias: The tendency of people to consistently exaggerate what could have been anticipated through

Hispanic subculture: The subculture of the Hispanic population in the United States, in which four groups have
been identified--Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, and other Hispanics.

Hostselling: The use of a program character to promote a product.

Household: A group of people living under one roof.

Humor in messages: A type of message based upon using humor.

Hypothetical value function: The relationship between the psychological valuation of gains and losses that may
result from a course of action and the actual valuation of those losses and gains.

Id: One of the three elements of the personality identified by Freud. The id is based upon the pleasure principle,
immediate gratification, and moves a person to obtain positive feelings and emotions.
Idea generation: The first stage of product development.

Ideal self: How a person would ideally like to perceive himself or herself.

Identification: The normal process through which children acquire appropriate social roles by consciously and
unconsciously copying the behavior of significant others.

Image congruence hypothesis: The hypothesis that a consumer selects products and stores that correspond to
his or her self-concept.

Immigration: To come into a country of which one is not a native for permanent residence.

Impersonal threats: Threats to behavioral freedom that come from impersonal sources.

Impulse purchase: Buying action undertaken without a problem previously having been consciously recognized
or without a buying intention formed prior to entering the store.

Incentives: The products, services, and people that are perceived as satisfying needs.

Income effect: An economic principle stating that, when prices are lowered, consumers can afford more of a
product without giving up other alternatives.

Incremental Effects Theory: Over many presentations of a stimulus, a stimulus representation is gradually into
the consumer’s nervous system.

Index of Consumer Sentiment: An index of consumer economic confidence developed at the University of
Michigan Center for Survey Research.

Indirect comparative advertisement: A comparative ad in which the competing brand's name is never
specifically mentioned

Individual difference variables: They describe how one individual differs from another in distinctive patterns
of behavior.

Individual influence factors: Those psychological processes that affect individuals engaged in acquiring,
consuming, and disposing of goods, services and experiences.

Individual level of analysis: An analysis that focuses on identifying the processes that influence a person in the
acquisition, consumption, and disposition phases.

Industrial marketing: The marketing of a product by one firm to another firm.

Industrial purchase behavior: The process corporations use to purchase goods, services, and ideas.

Inept set: Consists of the brands and products that are considered unacceptable.

Inert set: Consists of the brands and products to which consumers are essentially indifferent.

Influence: The attempt of one person to impact the behaviors, attitudes, or beliefs of another person.

Informal exchange: Unwritten social contracts are created between parties. Occurring more frequently

in internal exchanges, social norms and peer pressure replace formal contracts.

Informal group: A group that has no written organizational structure and is often socially based.
Information: The content of what is exchanged with the outer world as we adjust to it and make our adjustment
felt upon it.

Information overload: A situation experienced by a consumer, in which more information is received than can
be processed in short-term memory.

Information processing: The process through which consumers are exposed to information, attend to it,
comprehend it, place it in memory, and retrieve it for later use.

Information salience: The level of activation of a stimulus in memory.

Informational influence: One method through which a group may influence an individual, in which the group
provides highly credible information that influences the consumer’s purchase decision.

Ingratiation: Self-serving tactics engaged in by one person to make himself or herself more attractive to

Ingratiator's dilemma: The problem that occurs when the ingratiator is caught manipulating the target person,
the result being a loss rather than a gain of power.

Inner-directed persons: Within the VALS psychographic inventory, persons who seek intense involvement in
whatever they do.

Innovativeness: The degree to which a consumer adopts new products, services, and ideas prior to others.

Inputs: In balance theory, the contributions to an exchange made by each of the parties to the exchange.

Instrumental materialism: Obtaining material goods to perform some activity or achieve some goal.

Instrumental response: The behaviors (operants) of an organism that have been operantly conditioned.

Instrumental role: Within a group, the role filled by the person who deals with the problem of getting the group
to achieve certain goals and complete certain tasks.

Instrumental values: Behaviors and actions required to achieve various terminal states.

Instrumentality of search: An approach for measuring external search by assessing the extent to which a
person relies on various types of outside information, such as the number of friends with whom a purchase is

Integrated group: A category within the VALS psychographic inventory that describes consumers who are
mature and balanced and who have managed to "put together" the best characteristics of the inner and outer

Interaction: Occurs when two or more factors combine to cause a consumer to behave in a different manner
than if the two factors were not combined.

Interaction set: Those stores where a consumers allows himself or herself to be exposed to personal selling.

Internal attribution: An attribution that the cause for an action was internal to the person or thing in question,
rather than to some external factor.

Internal exchange: Exchanges that occur between parties within a group.

Internal roles: Duties inside the family.

Internal search: The first phase of the search process, in which the consumer attempts to retrieve from long-
term memory information on products or services that will help to solve a problem.

Internalization: Occurs when an individual accepts influence because it is intrinsically rewarding.

Interpersonal processes: The communications that occur between two people at any particular point in time.

Interpretant: A person's reaction to and meaning derived from a sign.

Interpretation: A process whereby people draw upon their experience, memory, and expectations to interpret
and attach meaning to a stimulus.

Interpretation process: The process in which people draw upon their experience, memory and expectations to
attach meaning to a stimulus.

Interpretive research methods: Qualitative methods in which the researcher attempts to identify the meanings
of the symbols and rituals employed by consumers.

Intrinsic satisfaction: Satisfaction that results from an internal interest in doing something, rather than from the
external benefits of doing it.

Involuntary attention: An innate response that occurs when a consumer is exposed to something surprising,
novel, threatening, or unexpected.

Involvement: The level of perceived personal importance or interest evoked by a stimulus (or stimuli) within a
specific situation.

Involvement responses: The level of complexity of information processing and the extent of decision making
by a consumer.

Judgment: Assessments of (1) the likelihood that something will occur or (2) the goodness or badness of

Judgmental heuristics: The simple rules of thumb used by people to make estimates of probabilities and values.

Just-in-time (JIT) purchasing: A corporate philosophy associated with total quality management in which a
company seeks to purchase goods and services at the last possible minute prior to when they are required for the
production process.

Just noticeable difference (JND): The minimum amount of difference in the intensity of a stimulus that can be
detected 50% of the time.

Knowledge uncertainty: Consumers' uncertainty about the available features, their importance, and their
performance for alternative brands.

Laddering: The process of probing to identify the linkages between means (i.e., attributes) and terminal values
(i.e., end states).

Latitudes of acceptance and rejection: The areas surrounding a person's attitude about an issue. When
messages fall within these areas, they are assimilated and, in turn, viewed as consistent with the attitude of the

Law of contiguity: States that things that are experienced together become associated.

Law of demand: States that there is an inverse relationship between the price of the product and the quantity
demanded of the product.
Law of small numbers: People have a strong tendency to believe that a sample is a true representation of a
population even when the sample is extremely small.

Learning mechanisms: Processes through which a person retains information from the environment.

Learning through education: Obtaining information from companies in the form of advertising, sales
personnel, and the consumer's own directed efforts to seek data.

Learning through experience: The process of gaining knowledge through actual contact with products.
Overall, learning through experience is a more effective means to gain consumer knowledge.

Lecture: An advertising technique that occurs when a source speaks to the audience in an attempt to inform and

Lexicographic heuristic: A noncompensatory choice model in which the consumer first ranks the attributes and
then selects the brand rated highest on the highest-ranked attribute. If a tie occurs, the next most important
attribute is used.

Libido: A term in psychoanalytic theory that refers to sexual energy.

Lifestyle: How people live, how they spend their money, and how they allocate their time. It is concerned with
consumers’ overt actions and behavior. (p. 220)

Life themes: They represent critical values and goals that influence consumers at different stages of their lives.

Likert scale: An attitude scale that involves asking a consumer to indicate the amount of his or her agreement or
disagreement with a statement.

Limited capacity: A characteristic of short-term memory.

List of Values (LOV) Scale: Assesses the dominant values of a person. Although not strictly a psychographic
inventory, it has been applied to the same types of problems as VALS.

Logical empiricist research methods: Research methods that involve collecting and analyzing quantitative

Long-term memory: The type of memory that has unlimited capacity and that permanently stores information.

Low-involvement hierarchy: The hierarchy of effects that occurs in low-involvement decision making, in
which beliefs are formed first, followed by behavior, and finally by attitude formation.

Lower Americans: A description of social class that refers to the combination of the upper-lower and lower-
lower social classes.

Lower-lower class: The lowest of the social classes. Members are typically out of work (or have the dirtiest
jobs) and include bums and common criminals.

Lower-upper class: The next to highest social class, composed of the newer social elite drawn from current
professional and corporate leadership.

Macrosegmentation: Identifying groups of companies having similar buying organizations and facing similar
buying situations.

Managerial applications analysis: An analysis in which the consumer behavior concepts are identified that are
pertinent to a problem and their managerial implications noted.
Market embeddedness: The term used to describe situations in which the social ties between buyer and seller
supplement product value to enhance overall exchange utility.

Market mavens: Individuals who have information about many kinds of products, places to shop, and other
facets of markets. They initiate discussion with consumers and respond to requests from consumers for market

Market research: Applied consumer research designed to provide management with information on factors that
affect consumers’ acquisition, consumption and disposition of goods, services and ideas.

Market segmentation: The subdivision of a market into distinct subsets of customers, where any subset may
conceivably be selected as a target market to be reached with a distinct marketing mix.

Market testing: placing a product into limited distribution to consumers in order to identify potential problems
and test the entire marketing mix.

Marketer: The firm, nonprofit organization, government agency, political candidate, or other consumer who
wishes to cause an exchange to occur.

Marketing: The human activity directed at satisfying needs and wants through human exchange processes.

Marketing concept: The view that an industry is a customer-satisfying process, not a goods-purchasing process.

Marketing environment: The totality of the forces and institutions that are external and potentially relevant to a

Marketing mix: The elements of product, promotion, distribution and pricing over which marketing managers
can implement analysis, planning, and control.

Marketing strategy: A strategy implemented by creating segmentation and positioning objectives for a product
that an organization or individual wishes to exchange with a consumer.

Marketing triad: The interaction of a buying unit, the marketer, and the consumer situation at a particular time
and place to influence an exchange process.

Match up effect: It states that endorsers are more effective in changing attitudes, beliefs and intentions when the
dominant characteristics of the product match the dominant features of a source.

Match-up hypothesis: A hypothesis stating that the dominant characteristics of the product should match the
dominant features of a source.

Materialism: The importance a consumer attaches to worldly possessions, where at the highest levels
possessions assume a central place in life and provide the greatest sources of satisfaction and dissatisfaction.

Mature consumer: A person 65 years old or older. Mature consumers differ from younger people in
information- processing and consumption patterns.

Means-end chain: A model that identifies the linkages between consumer desires for specific product features
with increasingly abstract concepts, such as benefits desired and values that are important to an individual.

Medium: The channel through which a message is passed.

Memory-control processes: Methods of handling information that people use to get information into and out of
Mere exposure phenomenon: A psychological process in which positive feelings toward and evaluations of a
stimulus may be formed simply through repeated exposures to the stimulus.

Mere measurement effect: The finding that merely asking consumers about their purchasing plans in a market
research study actually influences their purcahse plans.

Message characteristics: Those aspects of a message that influence consumer reactions, such as the use of
humor or fear appeals.

Message complexity: The complexity of information that a message contains.

Message construction: The problem of how to physically construct a message. Factors to be considered in
message construction are message content and message structure.

Message content: The strategies that may be used to communicate an idea to an audience. An example of such
strategies is a decision to develop complex rather than simple messages.

Message structure: How the source organizes the content of the message, such as where in the message to place
the most important information.

Method of loci: A technique to aid the memorization of lists by creating a mental image of a house that has
locations in which the items of the list may be placed. To recall the list, the person takes a "mental" stroll back
through the house picking up the items.

Microsegmentation: Identifying the characteristics of the decision-making units within each of the various

Middle Americans: The name given to a combination of the social classes including the middle class, lower-
middle class, and working class.

Middle class: Average-income white-collar workers and their blue-collar friends who live on "the better side of
town" and try to "do the proper things."

Miller's law: The concept that people can process in short-term memory only seven, plus or minus two, chunks
of information at a time.

Model: Someone whose behavior others observe and attempt to emulate.

Modeling: The process through which someone attempts to emulate the behavior of another.

Moderating variable: An individual-difference variable that interacts with the consumer situation and/or the
type of message being communicated.

Monetary acquisitions: Acquisitions made with currency, personal checks, or credit.

Money: Currency accepted for use as a medium of exchange.

Mood states: Temporary variations on how people feel, which can range from happiness to extremely negative

Mores: Customs that emphasize the moral aspects of behavior. Frequently, mores apply to forbidden behaviors,
such as the showing of skin by women in fundamentalist Moslem countries.

Mortality rate: The number of people per 1,000 who die per year.

Motivation: An activated state within a person that leads to goal-directed behavior.

Motivation researcher: Researchers in the 1950s who employed a psychoanalytic approach to understanding
consumers by investigating fantasies, dreams, and symbols.

Multiattribute models: Models that identify how consumers combine their beliefs about product attributes to
form attitudes about various brand alternatives, corporations or other objects.

Multiple-store model: A model in which three different types of memory storage systems are identified-sensory
memory, short-term memory, and long-term memory.

Multistep flow model: A model of personal influence that states that information is transmitted from the mass
media to three distinct sets of people--gatekeepers, opinion leaders, and followers.

Myths: Stories that express key values and ideals of a society.

NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) A database that classifies groups of business firms
that produce the same type of product.

Need-driven person: A psychographic person identified in the VALS inventory who is characterized as striving
simply to meet basic food and housing needs.

Need for affiliation: A basic social need identified by McClelland that is similar in nature to Maslow's
belongingness need.

Need for cognition: A scale that measures the extent to which consumers have an intrinsic motivation to engage
in problem-solving activities.

Need for power: A basic social need, identified by McClelland. It refers to the desire to obtain and exercise
control over others.

Need for uniqueness: The desires to perceive ourselves as different and original.

Needs: Result from a discrepancy between an actual and a desired state of being.

Need recognition: It occurs when a person perceives that there is a discrepancy between an actual and a desired
state of being.

Negative reinforcer: Reinforcers that increase the likelihood of a behavior occurring by removing an aversive

Negativity bias: The finding that negative information is given more weight than positive information by
consumers when they make decisions to buy a product or service.

Negligent behavior. The actions and inactions of consumers that may negatively affect the long-term quality of
life of individuals and society. Examples include drunk driving, product misuse, and failing to use seatbelts.

Noncomparable alternatives: Two or more choice options in different product categories, such as deciding
whether to purchase a new car or build a new addition to a house.

Noncompensatory models of choice: Models of choice that emphasize that high ratings on some attributes do
not necessarily compensate for low ratings on other attributes.

Nonmonetary acquisitions: Acquisitions made when goods or services are traded, borrowed, made, inherited,
found, or stolen.
Nonverbal behaviors: Actions, movements, and utterances that people use to communicate in addition to
language. These include movements of the hands, arms, head, and legs, as well as body orientation and the space
maintained between people.

Normative influence: Occurs when norms act to influence individuals’ behavior.

Norm of reciprocity: A societal norm that states that, if a person does something for another, the second person
should respond with appropriate reciprocal action.

Norms: A behavioral rule of conduct agreed upon by over half of the group in order to establish behavioral
consistency within the group.

Nostalgia: "A longing for the past, a yearning for yesterday, or a fondness for possessions and activities
associated with days of yore."

Nuclear family: Consists of a husband, wife, and their offspring.

Object-attribute belief: The belief that an object possesses a specific attribute.

Object-benefit belief: The belief that an object will provide a specific benefit.

Objects: The products, people, companies, and things about which people hold beliefs and attitudes.

Observational learning: A process in which people develop "patterns of behavior" by observing the actions of
others. (Also called vicarious or social learning

Occupational demographics: The area that focuses on the jobs Americans hold and on the past and future
changes in these jobs.

One- versus two-sided messages: The issue of whether persuasive messages should present only one side or
both sides of an issue.

Ongoing search: Involves the search activities that are independent of specific purchase needs or decisions.

Operant conditioning: A process in which the frequency of occurrence of a behavior is modified by the
consequences of the behavior.

Operants: The naturally occurring actions of an organism in the environment.

Opinion leader: Consumers who influence the purchase decisions of others.

Opponent-process theory: The psychological process in which a person receives a stimulus that elicits an
immediate positive or negative reaction. This reaction is followed by a second emotional reaction that is opposite
in valence to the feeling initially experienced.

Opportunity cost: The concept that, when a person buys a product or engages in one task, he or she
simultaneously forgoes buying another product or engaging in another task.

Optimum stimulation level: A person's preferred amount of physiological activation or arousal, which may
vary from very low (e.g. sleep) to very high (e.g. severe panic)

Organization: Deals with how people perceive the shapes, forms, figures, and lines in their visual world.

Organizational buying center: The people in an organization who participate in a buying decision and who
share the risks and goals of that decision.
Organizational buying situations: Researchers have identified three fundamental task definitions for
organizational buying situations-new task, modified rebuy, and straight rebuy.

Organizational culture: The shared values and beliefs that enable members to understand their roles and the
norms of the organization.

Orientation reflex: The physiological response of a person to a novel or unexpected stimulus that involves an
increase in arousal and the orientation of the person to the stimulus.

Outcomes: The results of an exchange that a person assesses in relation to the inputs to determine if the
exchange was equitable.

Outer-directed persons: Psychographic persons identified by the VALS inventory who tend to focus on what
people think of them and gears their lives to the "visible, tangible, and materialistic."

Overprivileged: Individuals with high incomes within a particular social class, in contrast to the
underprivileged, who have lower incomes.

Pacific Rim: The countries that are situated on the Pacific Ocean.

Paired-associate learning: The learning of pairs of words or concepts by attempting to associate them with each

Pattern advertising: While an overall promotional theme may be employed worldwide, the implementation of
this theme (e.g., deciding whether to translate a slogan directly or to paraphrase it) is done locally. This approach
is in example of what the Japanese call dochakuka: "think globally, act locally."

Perceived freedom: A motivational need experienced by people to maintain their behavioral freedom.

Perceived risk: A consumer's perception of the overall negativity of a course of action based upon an
assessment of the possible negative outcomes and on the likelihood that those outcomes will occur.

Perceived Value: The trade-off consumers make between perceived quality and perceived price when
evaluating a brand.

Perception: The process through which individuals are exposed to information, attend to that information and
comprehend it.

Perceptual maps: A map that shows how consumer position various brands relative to each other on a graph
whose axes are formed by product attributes.

Perceptual organization: How people perceive the shapes, forms, figures, and lines in their visual world.

Peripheral persuasion cues: Include such factors as the attractiveness and expertise of the source, the mere
number of arguments presented and the positive or negative stimuli that form the context within which the
message was presented.

Peripheral route to persuasion: Persuasion that occurs in low involvement circumstances when little
information elaboration is provided.

Personal influence: Refers to the idea that one individual may intentionally or unintentionally influence another
in his or her beliefs, attitudes, or intentions about something.

Personal marketing: The marketing of one's own self to others.

Personal value: The meanings of ideal end states and modes of conduct possessed by an individual.
Personality: The distinctive patterns of behavior, including thoughts and emotions, that characterize each
individual's adaptation to the situations of his or her life.

Persuasion: An explicit attempt to influence beliefs, attitudes and/or behaviors.

Physical Attractiveness: One of the key source characteristics that influence consumer reactions to

Physical Surroundings: The concrete physical and spatial aspects of the environment encompassing a
consumer activity.

Phased Strategy: Consumers sequentially use two noncompensatory models, or first use a noncompensatory
model and then a compensatory approach.

Piecemeal Report Strategy: The use of the frequency heuristic to influence choice by comparing a brand’s
attributes one at a time to different attributes from different brands in order to make the marketer’s brand seem to
be more appealing.

Pioneering Advantage: It occurs when the first brand to enter a product category achieves a long-term edge
over competitors.

Pipe dream rumors: Represent wishful thinking on the part circulators of rumors.

Pleasure Principle: a principle that leads to seeking instant gratification of instincts.

Popular culture: The culture of mass appeal.

Possession ritual: Involves acts in which a person lays claim to, displays or protects possessions.

Positioning: Influencing how consumers perceive a brand’s characteristics relative to those of competitive

Positive Reinforecer: An appropriate reward that is given immediately after a behavior occurs to increase the
likelihood that the behavior will be repeated.

Postacquisition process: Refers to the consumption, postchoice evaluation, and disposition of goods, services,
experiences and ideas.

Preattention: The unconscious process in which consumers automatically scan the features of the environment.

Premeditated rumors: Individuals with something to gain set out to spread rumors that may help them
financially or otherwise.

Preneed goods: A good or service that is purchase prior to when it is needed, such as insurance.

Prepurchase search: Involves those information-seeking activities that consumers engage in to facilitate
decision making about a specific purchase after they have gone through the problem recognition stage.

Price elasticity: An economic concept that different groups of consumers react divergently to changes in the
price of a product or service.

Price-quality relationship: The greater the price, the less likely a consumer is to buy a particular product.

Primacy effect: It occurs when material early in the message has the most influence. (versus material at the end
of he message).
Private acceptance: A situation in which a person actually changes his or her beliefs in the direction of the

Priming: A phenomenon in which a small amount of exposure to a stimulus leads to an increased drive to be in
the presence of that stimulus.

Proactive Interference: Material learned prior to the new material interferes with the learning of the new

Problem recognition: The discovery of discrepancy between an actual and a desired state of being.

Product development: The process which consists of developing, testing, naming, and packaging prototypes.

Product differentiation: The process of manipulating the marketing mix to position a brand so that consumers
perceive meaningful differences between it and its competitors.

Product disposition: What consumers do with a product once they have completed their use of it.

Product expectations: The standard against which the actual performance of the product is assessed.

Product innovation: A product that has been recently introduced and is perceived by consumers to be new in
relation to existing products and services.

Product quality: The customers’ overall evaluation of the excellence of the performance of a good or service.

Product use: It involves the actions and experiences that take place in the time period in which a consumer is
directly a good or service.

Prospect theory: According to this theory, how people psychologically interpret the goodness or badness of an
option does not necessarily match "objective" or "actual" measure of its value.

Proportion-of-purchase method: The most frequently used measure of brand loyalty in empirical research.

Psychodynamic theory of personality: A theory of Freud that human personality results from a dynamic
struggle between inner psychological drives and social pressures to follow laws, rules and moral codes.

Psychodynamic theory of arousal: A theory that assumes that unconscious wishes to engage in some behavior
can be activated by unconsciously presented stimuli.

Psychological reactance: The negative motivational state that results when a person’s behavioral freedom has
been threatened.

Psychographic Analysis: A type of consumer research that describes segments of consumers in terms of how
they live, work, and play.

Psychographics: The quantitative investigation of consumers’ lifestyles, personalities and demographic


Public policy: The development of laws and regulations that impact consumers in the marketplace.

Punisher: Any stimulus whose presence after a behavior decreases the likelihood that that behavior will occur.

Quiet Set: Retail stores that consumers enter, but have no intention of purchasing a product from.

Reactance: The motivational state of someone whose behavioral freedom has been threatened.
Reality principle: A principle that moves a person to be practical, and to function efficiently in the world.

Recall task: Information is retrieved by the consumer from long-term memory (unaided recall).

Recency effect: It occurs when material at the end of a message has the most influence (versus material at the
beginning of the message).

Recognition task: Information is put in front of a consumer, who simply judges whether the information has
been previously seen.

Reference group: A group whose value, norms, attitudes or beliefs are used as a guide for behavior by an

Reflected Appraisal: A process in which a consumer examines the manner in which others in a reference group
interact with him or her.

Regional subcultures: Subcultures based upon a geographical sub-area of a larger culture.

Regulatory environment: It consists of al the laws and regulations established by federal, state, and local
governments to exert control over business practices.

Rehearsal: The silent repetition of information to encode into long-term memory.

Reinforcer: Anything that occurs after a behavior and changes the likelihood that the behavior will be repeated.

Relational exchange: A transaction that involves a long-term commitment in which trust and social relations
play an important role.

Relationship marketing: The overt attempt of exchange partners to build a long-term association characterized
by purposeful cooperation and mutual dependence and the development of social, as well as structural bonds.

Relationship trust: A willingness to rely on an exchange partner in whom one has confidence.

Relative income hypothesis: People within the same social class often have different consumption patterns
based on their relative incomes.

Reliability: It is evidenced when a scale is internally consistent, and gives similar results when an individual is
retested after a period of time.

Repeat purchase behavior: The consumer is merely buying a product repeatedly, without any particular
product for it.

Repetition effects: The impact on consumers of repeating an advertising message a number of times.

Repositioning: Changing how consumer perceive a brand’s characteristics relative of those of competitive

Representativeness heuristic: A rule of thumb by which people determine the probability that "object A"
belongs to "class B" by assessing the degree that object A is similar to or stereotypical of class B.

Response generation: The concept that the recall of a memory results from the person actively constructing a
response, rather than simply pulling from memory, an accurate representation of the stored information.

Restricted exchange: The simplest type of exchange, involves two parties interacting in a reciprocal
Retrieval: The process in which an individual searches through long-term memory to identify within it the
information to be recalled.

Retrieval cues: Verbal or visual information, originally contained in an advertisement, that is placed on the
product or packaging to assist consumers' memories during decision making.

Retroactive interference: The concept that new material presented after old material has been learned interferes
with the recall of the old material.

Risk perception: The likelihood and degree of negativity which consumers perceive that outcomes may possess.

Rokeach value scale: A scale developed to assess the predominant values of people. It appears to capture values
held cross-culturally.

Role: The specific behaviors expected of a person in a position. Thus, when a person takes on a role, normative
pressures exert influence on the person to act in a particular way.

Role conflict: A case in which individuals simultaneously occupy two roles that may entail conflicting demands,
such as being both a mother and an executive.

Role overload: A state of conflict that occurs when the sheer volume of behavior demanded by the positions in a
person's position set exceeds available time and energy.

Role-related product cluster: The set of products necessary for the playing of a particular role.

Roles: The specific behaviors expected of a person in a certain position.

Rumors: Information or stories in general circulation that lack factual certainty.

Salience effects: Occur when stimuli stand out from background information, so that attention is directed toward
those stimuli.

Salient beliefs: Important attribute-object beliefs activated when a person evaluates an attitudinal object.

Satisficing: The concept that consumers will frequently attempt to make only satisfactory decisions rather than
perfect decisions because of limitations in time, information-processing ability, or appropriate facts.

Schedule of reinforcement: A schedule, formed by the frequency and timing of reinforcers, that can
dramatically influence the pattern of operant responses.

Schema: An organized set of expectations a person holds about an object.

Search process: A search for information that may be either extensive or limited, depending upon the
involvement level of the consumer.

Secondary reinforcer: A previously neutral stimulus that acquires reinforcing properties through its association
with a primary reinforcer.

Segmentation: The division of a marketplace into distinct subsets of consumers having similar needs and wants,
each of which can be reached with a different marketing mix.

Segmenting by demand elasticity: The process of segmenting consumers based upon the differential slopes of
their demand curves (e.g., on airline flights, vacationers versus business travelers).

Selective attention: The concept that consumers selectively decide to which stimuli they should attend.
Selective exposure: The concept that consumers actively choose whether or not to expose themselves to

Self-concept: The totality of the individual's thoughts and feelings having reference to himself or herself as an

Self-fulfilling rumors: Rumors are based on a perception of what could happen in the future if something else
were to occur.

Self-gifts: Gifts that are given by a person to himself or herself.

Self-perception: The concept that an individual may observe his or her own actions to infer attitudes and beliefs.

Semantic concepts: The meanings attached to words, events, objects, and symbols.

Semantic memory: How people store the meanings of verbal material in long-term memory.

Semiosis analysis: The process of identifying an object, a sign, and an interpretant to analyze the meaning of a

Semiotics: The investigation of symbols and their meaning.

Sensation: The investigation of the ways in which people react to the raw sensory information they receive
through their sense organs.

Sensory memory: The extremely brief memories that result from the firing of nerve fibers in a person's brain.

Sentiment connections: A term from balance theory used to denote the observer’s evaluations of another person
and an attitudinal object.

Separatedness-connectedness: A variable that measures the extent to which people perceive their self-concept
as autonomous (separated from other people) versus interdependent (united with other people).

Serial learning: The process of how people place into memory and recall information received in a sequential

Serial-position effect: The finding that items at the beginning and end of a list are learned more rapidly than
items in the middle of a list.

Service encounter: A personal interaction that occurs between a consumer and a marketer.

Service quality: A customer's overall assessment of the excellence of a service.

Services: Products exchanged that are intangible and that someone does for someone else.

Shaping: A process through which a new operant behavior is created by reinforcing successive approximations
of the desired behavior.

Short-term memory: The site where information is temporarily stored while being processed. Short-term
memory is noted for its limited capacity.

Sign tracking: The concept that organisms have a tendency to orient themselves toward and attend to
unconditioned stimuli.

Signs: The words, gestures, pictures, products, and logos used to communicate information from one person to
Simple exchange: Characterized by two parties in a reciprocal relationship.

Situational involvement: Involvement that occurs over a short period of time and is associated with a specific
situation, such as a purchase.

Situational traits: Dispositions to act within general situational contexts.

Slippage: The marketing term for the percentage of customers who purchase a product but fail to redeem a
premium offer.

Social class: The relatively permanent and homogeneous strata in a society that tend to differ in their status,
status, occupations, education, possessions, and values.

Social class hierarchy: The ordering of the social classes from lower to higher.

Social comparison: The process through which people evaluate the correctness of their opinions, the extent of
their abilities, and the appropriateness of their possessions.

Social facilitation: The concept that a person become aroused when performing a task in front of other people.
The arousal tends to enhance performance on easy tasks and hinder performance on difficult tasks.

Social fences: Occur when a short-term punisher causes large numbers of people to avoid engaging in a behavior
that would have benefited the group of people.

Social judgment theory: A psychological theory that describes how an individual reacts to attitudinal
statements depending upon the relationship of the statement to the person's own attitude.

Social learning: The theory proposing that people will observe the actions of others to develop patterns of

Social-psychological personality theories: Personality theories that are based upon individual differences in
how people respond to social situations.

Social relations: The network of ties between individuals. Ties may be strong, weak, or nonexistent.

Social surroundings: The effects of other people on a consumer in a consumption situation.

Social threats: External pressure by other people to induce a consumer to do something.

Social traps: The psychological phenomenon related to the finding that individuals may respond to short-term
reinforcers, which can lead to long-term negative outcomes for a group.

Socialization agents: Individuals directly involved with a consumer who have influence because of their
frequency of contact with the consumer, who have importance to the consumer, or who have control over
rewards and punishments given to the consumer.

Socialization background factors: Factors that influence the socialization process, which include such
variables as the consumer's socioeconomic status, sex, age, social class, and religious background.

Source: An individual or character who is delivering a message.

Source characteristics: Features of the source, that impact the effectiveness of a message delivery, such as
credibility, physical attractiveness, likability and meaningfulness.

Source credibility: A construct used to describe sources of information. The extent that a source is perceived to
have expertise and trustworthiness.
Source expertise: The extent of knowledge the source is perceived to have about the subject on which he or she
is communicating

Source likability: The positive or negative feelings that consumers have toward a source of information.

Source physical attractiveness: The extent to which a source is perceived to have physical beauty.

Source trustworthiness: The extent that a source is perceived to provide information in an unbiased, honest

Specific positioning: The attempt to create strong connections between the product, certain key attributes, and
the product's benefits in consumers' minds.

Spontaneous brand switching: Consumers' tendency to periodically buy a new brand, even when nothing
indicates that they are unhappy with the brand previously used.

Standard rumors: When people seek explanations for unusual events.

Standard Industrial Classification system- A database that classifies and identifies groups of business firms
that product the same type of product.

Standard learning hierarchy: A high-involvement hierarchy of effects in which beliefs occur first, followed by
the development of feelings or affect, followed by the occurrence of a behavior.

Standardization of the marketing plan: The proposal that marketing plans can be standardized in international

Status: A person's social standing in the class hierarchy.

Status crystallization: The consistency with which an individual reveals a particular social status across a
number of dimensions.

Status groups: Groups based upon social distinctions and differences in social prestige and respect.

Stimulus discrimination: Occurs when an organism behaves differently toward two similar stimuli.

Stimulus generalization: Occurs, when an organism reacts similarly to two or more distinct stimuli.

Store layout: The physical organization of a store that creates specific traffic patterns, assists in the presentation
of merchandise, and helps to create a particular atmosphere.

Subculture: A subdivision of national culture based on unifying characteristics, such as social status or religion,
whose members share similar patterns of behavior distinct from that of the national culture.

Subjective norm: A major component of the behavioral intentions attitude model. The subjective norm
introduces into this model the powerful effects of reference groups on behavior. It assesses what consumers
believe other people think that they should do.

Subliminal perception: The concept that stimuli presented below the level of conscious awareness may
influence behavior and feelings.

Substitute activities: Activities that satisfy the same need for the consumer and are mutually exclusive (they
cannot take place together).

Substitution effect: The economic principle that, when the price of a product falls, it may be substituted for
similar goods that are now relatively more costly.
Superego: In psychoanalytic theory, the conscience or "voice within" a person that echoes the morals and values
of parents and society.

Surface traits: Enduring dispositions to act in context-specific domains.

Surrogate consumer: A person who acts like an agent retained by a consumer to guide, direct, and/or transact
marketplace activities.

Symbolic innovation: An innovation that, through the acquisition of new, intangible attributes, communicates a
different social meaning than it did previously.

Symbolic interactionism: A perspective that views consumers as living in a symbolic environment and
constantly interpreting the symbols around them.

Symbols: Things that stand for or express something else.

Syncratic decision: Important decisions in which the husband and wife participate jointly.

Task definition: The reason or occasion for engaging in a consumer action, such as a gift occasion, a party, or
even a type of meal.

Tastes and preferences: Subjective inclinations that may change and act to shift the demand curve.

Technological innovation: A change in the characteristics of a product or service that results through the
introduction of a technological change.

Terminal materialism: A type of materialism in which having possessions is seen as an end in itself.

Terminal materialism is viewed as potentially destructive because it leads to such unbecoming traits as envy,
possessiveness, nongenerosity, and greed.

Terminal values: Desired end states-how people would like to experience their lives.

Theory: A set of interrelated statements defining the causal relationships among a group of ideas.

Theory of reasoned action: A theory that describes the factors posited to influence the behavioral intentions of
an individual.

Time as a situational variable: The concept that the amount of time available to consumers forms a situational
context that acts to influence their acquisition, consumption, and disposition of products and services.

Time compression: The electronic process through which radio or television commercials may be compressed,
such that they last a shorter length of time.

Tolerance for ambiguity: A trait that assesses how a person will react to situations that have varying degrees of
ambiguity or inconsistency.

Total quality management (TQM): A management philosophy based on the idea that successful companies
should continuously improve the quality of their products and that quality is defined by the customer.

Trait: Any characteristic on which a person may differ from another in a relatively permanent and consistent

Transformational advertising: Advertising that causes a consumer to associate the experience of using a
product with a set of psychological characteristics not typically associated with its use. This acts to transform the
experience of purchasing and using the product.
Trickle-down theory: A model of mass communications that holds that information moves from the upper
classes to the lower classes. For example, fashion trends begin with the wealthy.

Truth effect: If something is repeated often enough, people who are in a low-involvement processing mode will
believe it.

Two-factor theory: An explanation of advertising wear-out. In one process, the repetition of a message causes a
reduction in uncertainty and increased learning about the stimulus, resulting in a positive response. In the other
process, tedium or boredom begins to occur with each repetition.

Two-sided message: A message that presents both sides of an argument as a tactic to be more persuasive.

Two-step flow model: A model of mass communications that holds that mass communications first influence
opinion leaders, who in turn influence followers.

Types of risk: Various risk factors that may influence consumers including financial risk, performance risk,
physical risk, psychological risk, social risk, time risk, and opportunity loss risk.

Unawareness set: Consists of the unknown brands and products.

Unconditioned response: The reflexive, involuntary response elicited by an unconditioned stimulus.

Unconditioned stimulus: Any stimulus capable of eliciting autonomically an unconditioned response.

Underprivileged: The people within a given social class who have low incomes relative to other members of
that social class.

Unique selling proposition: A quick, hard-hitting phrase that captures a major feature of a product or service.

Unit relation: As defined in balance theorv, a relationship that is attributed when an observer perceives that two
cognitive elements are somehow connected to each other.

Upper Americans: A description of a group of social classes including the upper-upper, lower-upper, and
upper-middle class.

Upper-lower class: A social class described as working, not on welfare, whose living standard is just above
poverty, whose behavior may be judged as crude and trashy, and that tends to consist of unskilled workers.

Upper-middle class: A social class composed of college graduates, managers, the intellectual elite, and

Upper-upper class: The highest status group, marked by its small size and "old" money.

Urban legends: A phenomenon related to rumors, are realistic stories about incidents that are reputed to have

Usage situation: A type of situation based upon the task definition. It forms the context in which a product or
service is used and influences the product characteristics sought by a consumer. (p. 463)

Utilitarian needs: Desires of consumers to correct basic instrumental problems, such as filling a car's gas tank
or removing a spot from a rug.

Validity: It is evidenced when a scale is shown to measure the trait that is designed to assess.

VALS life-style classification scheme: A psychographic approach in which consumers are divided into four
broad groups of individuals-the need-driven, the inner-directed, the outer-directed, and the integrated groups.
VALS 2: A new psychographic model developed by SRI International that identifies relationships between
consumer attitudes and purchase behavior based upon three categories of self-identity orientations.

Valuation of pins and losses: A process described in prospect theory in which a person values the level of
positive or negative outcomes.

Value-attitude system: The relation of global values to domain-specific values to evaluations of product
attributes within a consumer's belief system.

Value -expressive influence: The concept that the values and attitudes of a reference group will influence a
person who wishes to be part of and liked by that group.

Values: Enduring beliefs about ideal end states and modes of conduct. They dictate what is good, right and
appropriate in behavior.

Variety-seeking purchases: Buying a new brand spontaneously, even though no dissatisfaction is expressed
with the previously purchased brand.

Vehicles: The specific means within a channel by which a message is communicated, such as Vogue magazine
as a vehicle within the print medium.

Vicarious learning: A type of learning that occurs when a person observes the reinforcements received by
others contingent on their actions.

Vivid messages: Messages using vivid, concrete words, which to have a greater impact on receivers than
messages containing more abstract information.

Voluntary attention: A process in which the consumer actively searches out information to achieve some type
of goal.

von Restorff effect: The effect by which a unique item in a series of relatively homogeneous items is recalled
much more easily than those surrounding items, because the effects of proactive and retroactive interference are

Warner's index of social characteristics: Uses four variables as indicators of social class-occupation, source of
income, house type, and dwelling area.

Weber's law: The concept that as the intensity of a stimulus increases, the ability to detect a difference between
two levels of the stimulus decreases.

Word-of-mouth communications: Exchange of comments, thoughts or ideas between two or more consumers,
none of whom is a marketing source.

Word-of-mouth network: The relations between individuals through which personal influence may occur.

Working class: The social class composed of individuals who engage in blue-collar trades, such as carpentry,
plumbing, and assembly line work.

Working memory: (a common term for short-term memory) A hypothetical memory component in which
individuals actively process information.

Zapping: The process in which consumers avoid seeing commercials by switching channels on their television
with a remote control device.

Zeigarnik effect: An effect that occurs when an individual is involved in a task that is interrupted or not
completed. People continue to process information about the task until it is completed.