Consumer Behavior

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Course started: 2019-09-09 — 2020-01-06
选课时间: 2019-09-09 — 2020-01-06
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Course description

Consumers make up the market. To enter market smoothly, occupy the market successfully, or even survive and develop in the market with fierce competition, you must understand consumers. Understanding consumer behavior is the first step, but very critical step for marketing. Do learn this course Consumer Behavior and find the mysteries of consumer market!

Syllabus

Syllabus for Consumer Behavior

Course title: Consumer Behavior                Course code: 621510142
Class hours: 48                             Credit: 3
Semester: the 5th Semester
Applicable for majors: Marketing
Course type: compulsory course for major of Marketing
Prerequisite course: Marketing Management
Recommended textbook: Del I. Hawkins, David L. Mothersbaugh. Consumer Behavior[M]. China Machine Press. 2015

I. Purposes and tasks of the course
By learning this course, students shall systematically learn fundamental knowledge and tools with regard to consumer behavior, which will help them to discover, understand and analyze consumers and markets. On the basis of learning those important concepts and principles, students can observe and understand market from the viewpoint of consumer behavior, grasp laws of consumers’ demands, investigate consumer insight and combine theories with practice for building marketing strategy.

II. Basic requirements of teaching
1.    Teaching requirements
This course concerns analysis of all aspects of consumer behavior with a wide range of knowledge. There are differences and connections as well as relative independence among all the chapters. Therefore, based on a comprehensive and systematic teaching, basic theories, knowledge and methods should be mastered by students. Meanwhile, focus should be put on combining theory and practice, closely integrating practices in domestic and foreign enterprises. The contents this course describes are derived from corporate marketing practice, which requires students in the learning process to link the curriculum contents with the real economic life to compare, analyze and research so as to enhance the perceptual knowledge, deeply understand the contents of the teaching materials, convert knowledge into their abilities, and improve their abilities to analyze and solve problems.
2.    Key teaching points
First, the important terms and concepts of consumer behavior; second, the fundamental knowledge or theories of consumer behavior, including consumer perception and learning, consumer personalities, consumer needs and motivations, consumer attitude change, group consumer psychology, social and cultural influences on consumer psychology, and process of consumer decision; third, the applications of consumer behavior in marketing.
3.    Relations with the prior and post courses
Before taking this course, students should learn marketing management.
4.     Major teaching arrangements
(1) Case or game for warming up: each chapter begins with the introduction of a case or a game to inspire students to think about problems or topics concerned; (2) Lecture plus reflection: after the important and difficult points are taught, classroom questions are used to learn about whether students have understood the knowledge they learned; (3) Organize classroom discussions: with the cases teacher provides, students conduct group discussions first, and then groups send their representatives to exchange their ideas in classroom, and finally the teacher makes a comment; (4) Case analysis or study; (5) For some chapters, experiment or practice is arranged for training students’ practical skills, and students are asked to write a practice report.
5. Teaching methodology
Teachers of this curriculum should strengthen the design of teaching process, and skillfully combine theories learning with skill practicing together into the class. Given the nature of the course, it is unquestionably practical and skillful. This requires teachers to focus on heuristic teaching, appropriately increase classroom discussions, extra-curricular researches, team work and other effective forms in the teaching process. Specifically, they include: (1) Problem warm-up: each lesson begins with an instance to put forward the theme and problems, and then explain in detail; (2) Case study: cases both abroad and at home are used to help students understand knowledge and theories better; (3) Students-oriented interactions: organize classroom discussion, arrange team work, and provide questions and reference materials for self-learning; (4) Practice: experiments or practices are designed to improve students' capabilities of researching, analyzing and problem solving.

III. Teaching contents (By chapter)
Chapter I Introduction
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should grasp the basic concepts and applications of consumer behavior as well as the development and research significance of consumer behavior, be familiar with the objects and contents of Consumer Behavior. Students should know some common research methods and research principles of Consumer Behavior.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key point: concepts and applications of consumer behavior
Difficult point: applications of consumer behavior in marketing; conceptual model of consumer behavior
(III) Teaching contents
1. Concepts and development of consumer behavior
2. Applications of consumer behavior
3. Consumer behavior and marketing
4. Conceptual model of consumer behavior
5. Research methods and research principles of consumer behavior
Chapter II Society, Culture and Consumer Behavior
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should learn about social and cultural influences on consumer psychology, common subculture types, cross culture, global culture on consumer psychology and behavior, the meaning of composition and their implications in marketing.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key point: definition of culture; social and cultural influences on consumer psychology
Difficult point: implications of cross-culture in marketing; key dimensions in deciding to enter a foreign market
(III) Teaching contents
1. Concept of culture
2. Cultural variations in nonverbal communications
3. Global culture, subculture and marketing
4. Considerations in approaching a foreign market
Chapter III Group Influences on Consumer Behavior
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand the characteristics of consumer groups, influences of different consumer groups on corporate marketing, ways of influence of reference groups on consumer behavior, and the characteristics of consumption custom and popularity as well as diffusion of innovation.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: characteristics of consumer groups; influences of reference groups
Difficult point: application of reference group influences in marketing
(III) Teaching contents
1. Concepts of group and reference group
2. Types of groups: brand communities, online communities
3. Influences of reference groups on consumption process
4. WOM, opinion leader… and marketing strategy
5. Diffusion of innovation
Chapter IV Perception
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand the meaning and process of perception, the meaning of exposure, attention and interpretation and their applications in the marketing. Students should also learn some related marketing tools.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: concept of perception; the process of consumer perception, the meaning of exposure, attention and interpretation; the applications of perception in marketing
Difficult points: components of perception; applications of exposure, attention, interpretation in marketing.
(III) Teaching contents
1. Concept of perception
2. Exposure
3. Attention
4. Interpretation
5. Applications of perception in marketing
Chapter V Learning and Memory
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should master the meaning of consumer learning and memory, understand the basic learning theories, learning under high and low involvement, learn the types of memory and information retrieval. Students should also learn applications of learning and memory in marketing.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: concepts of consumer learning and memory; learning theories; memory types; applications of learning and memory in marketing
Difficult points: learning theories; applications of learning and memory in marketing
(III) Teaching contents
1. Consumer learning and basic theories
2. Consumer memory
3. Retrieval of information
4. Applications of learning and memory in marketing
Chapter VI Motivation, Personality, and Emotion
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand the nature of consumer needs and motivation, learn the role of consumer personality and emotion, and also their applications in marketing.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key point: nature of consumer motivation; meaning of consumer personality and emotion; applications of motivation, personality and emotion in marketing
Difficult point: applications of motivation, personality and emotion in marketing
(III) Teaching contents
1. Consumer needs and motivation, their applications in marketing
2. Personality and its applications in marketing
3. Emotion and its applications in marketing
Chapter VII Consumer Attitudes and Influencing Attitudes
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand the meaning of consumer attitudes, master the components of consumer attitudes, ways to change attitudes, and understand some factors influencing attitude formation and change. Students should also learn about how to use marketing factors to prompt consumers to form a favorable attitude to enterprises.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: components of consumer attitudes; attitude change strategies; factors influencing attitude formation and change
Difficult point: attitude change strategies; make use of marketing factors to prompt consumers to form a favorable attitude to enterprises
(III) Teaching contents
1. Components of consumer attitude and component consistency
2. Attitude change strategies
3. Factors influencing consumer attitude formation and change
4. Marketing activities based on consumer attitudes
Chapter VIII Self-concept and Lifestyle
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand the meaning of self-concept and lifestyle of consumers and their applications in marketing. Students should also learn about some well-known analysis systems of consumer lifestyle.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: meaning of self-concept and its implication for marketing; nature of lifestyle; analysis systems of lifestyle
Difficult point: implication of self-concept in marketing; analysis systems of lifestyle
(III) Teaching contents
1. Self-concept and its implication for marketing
2. Nature of lifestyle
3. Analysis systems of lifestyle
Chapter IX Consumer Decision and Problem Recognition
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand the situational influence on consumer decision, the characteristics and process of consumer purchase decision-making, types of consumer decision, and the nature of problem recognition. Students should also learn about marketing strategies related with situational influence and problem recognition in terms of consumer decision.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: situational influence on consumer decision; process and types of consumer decision; the nature of problem recognition; marketing strategies related with situational influence and problem recognition
Difficult point: process and types of consumer decision; marketing strategies related with situational influence and problem recognition
(III) Teaching contents
1. Situational influences
2. Process of consumer decision
3. Types of consumer decision
4. Problem recognition
5. Marketing strategies related with situational influence and problem recognition
Chapter X Information Search and Alternative Evaluation
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should understand about the nature of information search, types and sources of information, cost & benefit of information search, evaluative criteria and some decision rules. Students should also learn about marketing activities related with information search and alternative evaluation.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: nature of information search; characteristics of information; criteria and rules of alternative evaluation; marketing activities related with information search and alternative evaluation
Difficult point: characteristics of information; criteria and rules of alternative evaluation; related marketing activities
(III) Teaching contents
1. Nature of information search
2. Characteristics of information
3. Evaluative criteria
4. Decision rules
5. Related marketing activities
Chapter XI Outlet Selection, Purchase and Postpurchase
(I) Teaching requirements
Through this chapter, students should learn about development of retail industry, factors affecting outlet selection, postpurchase dissonance, product use and disposition, purchase evaluation, customer satisfaction/dissatisfaction and customer commitment.
(II) Key and difficult points
Key points: development of retail industry; outlet selection; postpurchase; customer satisfaction and commitment
Difficult point: outlet selection; postpurchase dissonance; right treatment for customer responses after purchase
(III) Teaching contents
1. Retail industry
2. Outlet selection
3. Postpurchase dissonance
4. Product use and disposition
5. Customer satisfaction/dissatisfaction and commitment

IV. The experimental contents and requirements of the course (see curricular experiment or practice project plan)

V. Requirements of course exercises
The course has three kinds of exercises: after-class question, case study, and practice task. After finishing each chapter, teachers generally ask students to think about after-class question, study case or finish practice tasks. Teachers should selectively assign homework and guide them to complete.

VI. Class hour allocation
Contents                                                                      Class hours (theory & practice)
Chapter I Introduction                                                            3
Chapter II Society, Culture and Consumer Behavior            3
Chapter III Group Influences on Consumer Behavior            3
Chapter IV Perception                                                            3+6
Chapter V Learning and Memory                                            3
Chapter VI Motivation, Personality, and Emotion                    3
Chapter VII Consumer Attitudes and Influencing Attitudes    3+3
Chapter VIII Self-concept and Lifestyle                                    3
Chapter IX Consumer Decision and Problem Recognition    3
Chapter X Information Search and Alternative Evaluation    3
Chapter XI Outlet Selection, Purchase and Postpurchase    3
Review                                                                                    3
Flexible                                                                                    3
Total                                                                                    48

Practice (or experiment) projects
1.    Perception
Students should understand the concept and process of perception, the applications of exposure, attention and interpretation in marketing activities. There are two assignments related to this learning content:
(1)    The one is an experiment, using software (Face Reader) to observe and research the perception of respondents who are exposed to stimuli, such as advertisements. Through this experiment, students should understand the concept of perception and its important role in marketing, and they should also learn that some computer software can be applied to analyze consumer’s perception. Perception analysis can serve marketing strategies. Students should conduct this experiment and complete an experiment report.
(2)  The other is that students in groups take a particular brand or advertisement as an example or a case to analyze how music, colors, movement, contrast and other factors are used in the process of its brand logo or advertising design to stimulate consumers’ sensory organs, attract consumers’ attention, or influence consumers’ interpretation, thereby motivate their consumption. Students per group should submit a report or an essay.
2.    Attitudes
Focus Group Discussion (FGD) is a very popular and important way used by domestic or foreign companies to investigate consumer attitudes. Students in groups select a brand or a product to arrange a FGD. Through FGD, students can analyze consumers’ attitude in deep and put forward some proposals on how to improve marketing strategies. Students should conduct this practice and complete an experiment report.
3.    Social Groups
Students should understand different social groups have different consumption characteristics, and companies should carry out targeted marketing campaigns. The project requires students in groups to take a particular consumer group as the object of the study to grasp the main consumption characteristics and consumer tendencies of the groups through surveys, put forward corresponding marketing proposals for enterprises, and write an investigation report or an essay.
4.    Persona analysis of a brand
This project is to use analysis tool to study persona of a brand. The persona analysis can make marketers know their target consumers better and can help marketers position a brand or optimize brand positioning. Students should select a brand to describe or define the persona of the brand through analysis tools. Students should write an analysis report or an essay.

Rubrics (not shown here)

Learning target

Please see the syllabus.

Learning requirement

Please see the syllabus.

Assessment standard

Usual performance accounts for 20%, experiment & practice 30% and final exam 50%. There should be no less than two practice tasks. A closed-book or open-book form is used in the final exam, which is determined by the course teacher.

Teaching material

Please see the syllabus.