Psychology of Marketing Essay

The world of marketing and advertising is a chain of different components which are connected. These components overlap and supplement each other. One of the main aspects is psychological aspect of advertising and marketing. Taking into account the consumer’s opinion and behavior it is possible to make goods more popular and so to sale more items of this or that good. It is obvious that the most effective goods are those that are advertised extensively. Another fact is that consumers can be persuaded by both logical and emotional arguments; it depends on the way these arguments are presented. Consumer’s behavior can be defined as “the study of individuals, groups, or organizations and the processes they use to select, secure, use, and dispose of products, services, experiences, or ideas to satisfy needs and the impacts that these processes have on the consumer and society” (Hawkins, 1998).

Consumer’s Behavior

We can speak about behavior of one individual, group of people and organization. In context of organization, for example, colleagues decide which products to use in their firm. The field of marketing interest is consumer’s disposal of this or that product because it can encourage new consumers. Product disposal is also usually relevant to the environmental problems, for example, motor oil, pesticides, different chemical products pollute the environment and their usage should be controlled. We also can not leave without attention the impact of consumer behavior on society because it can have serious consequences. Aggressive advertising of easy credits or fast food may have negative impact because these products can endanger economy and health of the nation.

There are three applications of consumer behavior: marketing strategy, public policy and social marketing. Consumer behavior causes the appearance of special marketing strategy as a result, which is aimed to make marketing campaigns better and to attract more consumers. Taking into account psychological aspect good sale managers know that the best time for food advertising is late afternoon because people are hungry during this time. New products at first are accepted only by few consumers and only later they become popular among other people and so “companies that introduce new products must be well financed so that they can stay afloat until their products become a commercial success and (2) it is important to please initial customers, since they will in turn influence many subsequent customers’ brand choices” (Hawkins, 1998). Social marketing aims not to sell the product. Its main aim is to penetrate into the society, to get acquainted with its peculiarities and then apply in industry product suitable for this society. At the end of the 20th century the appearance of drugs and the use of the same needles caused the appearance of numerous diseases. This problem required immediate solution. Of course, the best variant would be to get rid of drugs but it was impossible. It is still impossible nowadays. Marty Fishbein, a famous marketing professor, encouraged people to clean needles before using them and it reduced the number of illnesses. This approach did not solve the problem with the drug but it had some positive results and it is only the first step.

Motivation in Advertising

Human motivation becomes one of key concepts in advertising. It is necessary to know the mechanism of human motivations in order to create products, which would appeal to customers.

Motivation is usually defined as “internal state or condition that activates behavior and gives it direction; desire or want that energizes and directs goal-oriented behavior; influence of needs and desires on the intensity and direction of behavior.” (Kleinginna, 254) Intrinsic motivation is a kind of motivation, which goes from inside and is perceived as deep desire to perform certain actions. Newest research proves that motivation has crucial meaning and influences practically all human responses. There are several theories of motivation, which give their own perspectives of the factors, which influence the customer. Behavioral theories of motivation are based on the assumptions that all people prefer to learn from their own experiences. Only own mistakes or successful actions are taken into account. Using this theory for selling producers should reward good or right behavior (i.e. buying good from their company) as much as possible. Social Learning Prospective is based on the idea that people prefer to learn from observing others performing certain action. Potential customers get their knowledge about certain good from friends, family members, etc. In order to succeed, adherents of this theory try to use advertising models, which would appeal to as many people as possible. Cognitive approach put thinking process higher than any other ones. Thinking process is primary for decision making and consumers make their final decision only after careful consideration. In order to advertise any good successfully using this approach is not enough to study the behavior of the customers. It is necessary to penetrate into the thoughts of the customer and understand his way of thinking. Biological approach takes genetic information as the main source of behavioral patterns. Advertising can benefit from this approach if it refers to different products with biological needs of the customers. For example, food advertising is more successful during the time period, when people are hungry, i.e. lunch, dinner, etc. Rational expectations approach is based on the economic view on the environment. Economists believe that all people think rationally and count on possible profit while making decisions. They believe that people think rationally even in the cases when they know that their ideas are unrealistic. Psychoanalytic theory is based on the ideas of prominent psychoanalytic, such as Freud. They assume that human motivation is based on biological instincts, where sexual desires play very important role. They also underline an important role of childhood memories. Modern advertisers use mainly sexual appeal to attract their customers.

Motivation is closely connected with psychological appeal. Psychological appeal is an influence of oral or visionary receptors, mind and emotions. Psychological appeal implies that performing some actions the person will satisfy conscious or subconscious desires. So, the main aim of all people, who create products or sell them is to create a physiological appeal to their potential customers. This appeal does not affect intellect. It is usually directed on the subconsciousness. Richard Taflinger defines ten types of psychological appeals. They are: self-preservation, sex, acquisition of property, self-esteem, personal enjoyment, constructiveness, destructiveness, curiosity, imitation, altruism. All these appeals have different effects on human psychics. There is one certain thing about them – they do not leave people indifferent. Using one of several of these appeals managers or advertisers get better feedback from their customers.

Different stimuli influence not only consciousness of people but also their subconscious mind. It is necessary to remember that subconsciousness makes more than two-thirds of our mind and thus most our actions and reactions to certain stimuli are determined by subconscious. Subconscious mind consists of two major parts, which are instincts and learned responses. Instincts are responsible for automatic reactions to stimuli. The brain turns to instinctive reactions without the control of the consciousness. Instincts can physical reaction on certain stimuli and they are hard to control. Learned response, which makes the second part of subconscious mind, consists of emotions, belief, attitude, feelings, and behavior. Knowing types of human reactions to certain stimuli is crucial for understanding the needs of the target audience.

Motivation possesses different characteristics. It can be hidden, overt or multiple. Some motivations are officially expressed and they are overt, for example to buy a car, while others are hidden from other people, for example, a desire to make an impression of successful person by buying an expensive car. Motivations can have positive or negative direction depending on the goal they are aimed for. Knowing the way motivation influences human behavior advertisers can use it as a mean to achieve their goals. Marketing strategy should take into account that consumers try to find balance between variety and stability: they do not want to eat the same food every day, so require some variety but at the same time they are not ready to try new food every day, so stability is also important.


Marketing strategy must take into account psychological aspect of consumers’ behavior. Only in this case the production may be successful on the international market. Knowing consumers’ motivations it is possible to predict consumers’ requirements and so to produce goods according to these requirements. Knowledge about motivation is widely used in advertising. Latest researches show that motivation has significant impact on buying abilities of consumers. Taking into account psychological aspect professionals who work out marketing strategies make the main accent on the subconscious mind of people. Extensive advertising of one product all in all pushes the person to try it. Advertising is one the most important components of marketing but it is necessary to remember that advertising is not only a way to earn more money but it also determines tendencies and peculiarities of social development and so can have serious consequences. Knowing human behavior is crucial for good managers because psychology gives additional opportunities to increase sales and attract more consumers of their products.


1. McClelland, D. (1985). Human motivation. New York: Scott, Foresman.
2. Hawkins, Del I., Roger J. Best, and Kenneth A. Coney (1998), Consumer Behavior: Building Marketing Strategy, 7th ed., Boston: McGraw Hill.
3. Ryan, R., & Deci, E. (2000). Self-determination theory and the facilitation of intrinsic motivation, social development, and well-being. American Psychologist, 55(1), 68-78. Retrieved February 2004, from
4. Yerkes, R., & Dodson, J. (1908). The relation of strength of stimulus to rapidity of habit-formation. Journal of Comparative Neurology and Psychology, 18, 459-482. Retrieved December 1999, from
5. Taflinger, Richard, Taking Advantage, New York, 2006
6. Kleinginna, P., Jr., & Kleinginna A. (1981). Motivation and Emotion, New York: The Viking Press

All the examples of marketing essays are written from scratch by our professional writers. If you need original custom essay on Marketing – choose our writing service and get high-quality non-plagiarized papers, written by experienced writers.

Posted in Essay Examples Tags: