Essay Consumer Behavior

Submitted By alyssashenk
Words: 735
Pages: 3

Alyssa Shenk
Professor Bechkoff
Bus 134A Sec 80
14 January 2015
Utilitarian Motivation Utilitarian consumer motivation can be described as a push to do and purchase things based on its utility and functionality (Dhar & Wertenbroch, 2000). Utilitarian motivation usually leads to purchases such as refrigerators, air conditioners, and strollers rather than designer handbags and diamond earrings (hedonic motivated purchases). Items purchased with utilitarian motivation serve a purpose and solve problems rather than satiating a need for “fun, pleasure, and excitement” (2000). VS. The image above is one that many men struggle with in their head when they are looking to buy a car and have a family. The minivan that can seat up to 8 people usually trumps the much sexier mustang or sports car that many men grow to lust over. This example illustrates how male consumers make a choice based on utilitarian motivation. Even if a man has one child it is very difficult to put a car seat in a vehicle with only two doors. Also, the chances of his family growing or being involved in his child’s future high school sports career may influence his decision to purchase a vehicle with much more room. Therefore, since he will be able to accomplish more things with the minivan, he is more likely to put off the sports car until his “mid-life crisis” stage of life. Purchasing things with utilitarian motivation can benefit consumers in several ways. Utilitarian motivated purchases help “maintain behavior” and solve problems (Babin & Harris, 2013). Therefore, they are beneficial to consumers when essential things need to be purchased. When people run out of things like deodorant and milk, they usually replace them on their next shopping trip. If utilitarian motivation didn’t play a role in the lives of consumers there is a chance that these purchases wouldn’t be made. Consumers would perhaps only make purchasing decisions that brought joy or pleasure to their lives (hedonic motivators) and refrigerators or toothpaste may not exactly be the most emotionally gratifying products on the market. Utilitarian motivators are also beneficial because unless someone is a millionaire, purchases need to be made based on functionality and utility rather than appeal. Therefore, financially it can be beneficial to not buy the prettiest things but the most useful for one’s specific needs. Utilitarian motivations aren’t always the most beneficial consumer motivators. They can also hurt consumers when looking for items to buy that need to be a little more gratifying. For example, when looking for a birthday gift for young child a consumer may be inclined to purchase a more practical item like a gift card so that the child may buy whatever they want. However, in this instance, something more fun and personal would be appropriate, like a Hot Wheels racetrack set or doll house. A gift card may come off as impersonal, last minute, and cheap even though it was purchased on the basis