This week our group discussed the different issues and topics that come up in chapter 5, which discusses what motivates us as consumers to buy the products and services we do and how these purchases affect our daily lives. Products have the power to invoke different feelings in different people. Certain purchases are strictly for social status appearances, while other things are bought to meet other physical or psychological needs a person may have. Motivation is the force that drives people to buy and use products, sometimes people are not even fully aware of these forces. Motivation usually comes from the need to satisfy an aroused need (Solomon 151).
The focal point of our conversations this week was Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs (Solomon 157) which highlights the needs that we as consumers have to satisfy. Starting at the base of the pyramid is the physiological needs that we confront on a daily basis. These needs include water, sleep, food; these are the basic needs that have to be met in order to survive and products that meet these needs include Quaker Oat Bran whose slogan is “it’s the right thing to do” which draws people to them because it makes them feel better about their purchase. The next level of needs in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is safety. These needs include security, shelter, and protection. A product that would satisfy this need would be purchasing a home security system. The next need that we have to satisfy is belongingness. Products that make people feel like they are a part of something bigger than them alcohol ads are famous for showing their products being used in environments like parties and clubs with large groups of friends laughing together leading people to remember these experiences with that particular brand. The next need we encounter is our ego. This is our need to feel accomplishments with the products we buy. Products like luxury cars and private country club memberships that give people the appearance of success and achievement. Lastly on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is the need for self-actualization. This is the need to self-fulfillment with things like education and traveling. A trip to a country you’ve always wanted to visit or getting a college degree.
An interesting way to better understand the material in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs was to design a board game that captures a way to meet all of these needs. Our group chose a design similar to life where you are trying to make your way around the board and eventually into the center which is where Self-Actualization is. There are several different scenarios that either advance you in the game, for example, eating breakfast which satisfies the physiological need for food, or you can be penalized and have to move backward such as forgetting to lock your homes front door which moves you back to the safety portion of the board. Designing this board game allowed our group to grasp what the needs we have as consumers and to better be aware of what is motivating us to buy different products and services.
Gunelius, S. (2019, February 18). aytm.com. Retrieved from Building a Brand Based on Emotions:Love and belonging : https://aytm.com/blog/building-a-brand-based-on-emotions-love-and-belonging/
Mcleod, S. (2018). Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Retrieved from simplypsychology.org: https://www.simplypsychology.org/maslow.html
Solomon, M. R. (2017). Consumer Behavior. Hoboken: Pearson.