Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Profile Post

Phillip Graves contributes to a blog entitled the Consumer Behavior Blog in which he explores the psychology of why consumers make certain purchases. This blog was of great interest to me because it not only focused on consumer behavior but also critiques the marketing strategies of certain companies. He said that market research is ineffective because consumers are usually not knowledgeable and there are so many differing ideas that coming to a consensus is impossible. In relation to my topic, Phillip focuses on the company rather than the consumer. This can give some good insight on why customer's take the actions that they do.

Phillip’s blog is academic in nature, since he claims to be a consumer behavior expert. He authored a book called Consumer.ology where he discusses the psychology behind why consumer’s make the decisions they do. He again stresses that market research is ineffective and that the key to understanding consumer’s lies in their psychology. His writing and studies are based in the United Kingdom, where he has consulted for various corporations. Although I could not find Phillip on Technorati, there were a good amount of responses to his blog entries. Phillip frequently posts to his blog on a range of topics that he seems to be very knowledgeable about. I find that he uses his blog as a tool to market his books.

This subject fascinates me and I hope to draw from his knowledge to come to a better understanding of the topic for myself. Phillip defies generally accepted marketing principles and claims that the standard way of thinking is incorrect. His blog counters the status quo and forces the reader to challenge their preconceived notion of consumer behavior and marketing.

I hope to mirror my blog as Phillip’s writes his, because he delves into topics that I also hope to analyze in my own blog. He authored one entitled “The Consumer Need Myth and Why Customers Really Buy.” This is the topic of my first blog and Phillip came to the conclusion that companies must target either a physical or emotional need of the customer. Phillip discusses that companies are usually out in the market to fill a need, but Philip argues that usually consumers don’t really know what they need, rather they know very little about the product they purchase. Moreover, the act of buying something is a goal that is set out in a person’s mind, and after the act is done, our brain releases the feel good hormone, dopamine, reacting to the idea that we have successfully completed a goal. He explores the psychology of “shopping” and discusses how it has always been beneficial to obtain material possessions. For example tools and “mechanisms for protecting ourselves” has always been valuable to us. Presently, material items that we purchase are a way of “protecting” our image and preventing us from being too much of an outsider.

The layout and organizational structure of Philips blog makes it easy for the reader to navigate. It is very simplistic, but not overly so that it makes the reader want to leave the site. His homepage contains only 3 tabs for external links, but it effectively organizes his blog. My own blog will draw information from Phillip’s blog; however, I will not have an in depth working knowledge of the topic. I hope to draw from his topics and expand his research by finding other scholars that agree or disagree with his opinions.

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