There are many different reasons why consumers buy specific car types and models — even in the United States. But, how different are purchase motivations around the world?
To answer this question, Nielsen recently conducted a large-scale online survey in 60 countries:
“’Linking global automotive demand with consumer sentiments and media habits is vital to developing marketing strategies that connect the right consumers with the right automotive brands,’ said Pat Gardiner, president of Nielsen Automotive. ‘The Asia-Pacific and Latin American regions, as expected, represent large areas of growth opportunity for the industry, but capturing this opportunity hinges on marketers successfully identifying, understanding’ and effectively connecting with the needs and desires of these buyers.’”
“One key to unlocking the demand drivers is discerning what role a car plays in the consumer’s life. Is it for utility — simply a mode of transportation to get you from one place to another? Is it to express status — a symbol of the success you’ve achieved in life? Or is it more purely emotional — you just love to drive? While each of these sentiments may play a role in the car-buying decision process, connecting with the emotions that pull at the heartstrings draws consumers more powerfully along the path to purchase.”
Click the image to read more.
Just like their larger counterparts, small business owners expect their channel partners (especially the manufacturers and suppliers with which they interact) to provide superior customer service. They do not want to be neglected or overlooked.
According to a February 2014 study by Cargo and Toluna (as reported by eMarketer): “Nearly half (47.3%) of small business owners (SBOs) said that poor customer service was the most common mistake brands made. Marketers must make an effort to relate to SBOs: Talking at SBOs (instead of with them), as well as failing to understand their businesses, were also big no-nos, cited by 44.7% and 40.7%, respectively.”
Click the chart to learn more.
According to Barbara Kahn, a Wharton professor, we are likely to consume more if we believe we are buying an “incomplete” product. Is this you? Read on.
In the Knowledge@Wharton video below, “Kahn talks about how a complete product encourages more consumption: A person is likely to eat two pieces of cheese with holes in them but only one if it is solid, for example. It’s a matter of perception, Kahn explains. She also discusses her research on the attention that consumers pay to large assortments of goods and how it influences their choices when information is presented visually or verbally. In addition, she describes a study on how consumers behave when goods are stacked vertically versus horizontally.”
In the United States, private brands account for less than 20 percent of all retail until sales. We love our branded products more than we want to save money. :-)
But in Western Europe, the story is much different. More than one-third of unit sales involve private brands.
As Nielsen reports:
“Price is one factor helping bolster private label growth in Europe. Notably, private label can be as much as 30 percent less expensive than brands across the Big 5 Countries. Across categories, private label has a price index of less than 60 percent in health, personal care, and home care, compared with 90 percent in perishable fresh foods, where the average prices are much closer to those of brands.”
“However the success of private label isn’t just about cost. Retailers in Europe have also created new demand, particularly by offering new premium private-label lines and by launching dine at home meal offerings with bistro or restaurant quality foods, a trend that is most evident in the U.K.”
Click the Nielsen chart to read more.
Do you get the snacking munchies? How often? When? What do you chow down?
According to recent research by Technomic:
“Snack consumption is on the rise, as half of today’s consumers (51 percent) say that they eat snacks at least twice a day, an increase from the 48 percent who said the same in 2012. And about a third of consumers (31 percent) told Technomic they’re snacking more frequently than they were just two years ago. Not only are consumers snacking more often, they’re broadening their definition of a ‘snack.’ These days, a wider range of foods—and beverages—are now viewed as snacks, and convenience stores and other retailers are sparking competition with restaurants in order to meet the growing demand.”
These are some of the other highlights from Technomic:
- “Consumers eat snacks both between meals and as meal replacements: Nearly half of consumers (49 percent) eat snacks between meals and 45 percent replace one or two daily meals with a snack.”
- “Forty-five percent of consumers who order snacks at restaurants order from the dollar or value menu.”
- “Fifty percent of consumers indicate that healthfulness is very important to them when choosing a snack.”
- “Portability is increasingly vital: 60 percent of today’s consumers, compared to 55 percent in 2012, cite portability as an important or extremely important factor when choosing a snack.”
Click the chart to read more.
For years now, we’ve been conditioned to buying a new cell phone every two years. Why? More features, longer battery life, cooler design, status, etc. And mobile companies have sure made it easy for us to do this. In return in for agreeing to a another two-year contract, we get a state-of-the-art shiny brand-new smartphone for a relatively low price. The service carriers subsidize the price of new phones by having us subscribe to contracts that promote high-margin services.
With the above in mind, let’s consider a rather radical idea espoused by Farhad Manjoo, writing for the New York Times. If Manjoo’s ideas are accepted, there will be a substantial impact on our smartphone purchase behavior — and on service providers’ bottom lines.
Here’s Manjoo’s perspective: “Despite their small size, smartphones are expensive, resource-hungry goods, and they deserve a better life cycle than two years of use followed by an eternity in a forgotten desk drawer.” So, “use your phone for more than two years, ideally three; when you run into trouble, try to repair, not replace it; and when you’re done with it, trade it in. When you’re looking for a new phone, don’t just consider the latest high-end devices; many people will find last year’s best phone just as useful as the newest one. You might even consider buying a used phone instead of a new one.”
Manjoo’s tips are to
- hold on to your smartphone for a longer time.
- sell or trade in your old phone to a company such as Gazelle (there is a growing aftermarket).
- buy a used phone (there are many great choices out there).
Click the Gazelle image to read more from Manjoo.
It has been about twelve-and-a-half years since one of the worst days in American history — a tragedy that many of us will remember forever. Now, One World Trade Center is ready to reclaim its unofficial title as “The Top of America.” And in the turbulent times we face, it is gratifying to see an important symbol back in the sky, although we will still miss the “Twin Towers.”
In recognition of the rebirth of 1 WTC, Time magazine has produced a great multimedia tribute. Click here to access it. As Richard Licayo writes:
“For years after the 9/11 attacks, nearly all the activity at Ground Zero was downward—digging through the piles of debris, excavating a vast pit to restore the ruined transit lines, preparing the foundations for the new buildings that would emerge there. Even the memorial that opened in 2011 was an exercise in the poetics of descent — two vast cubic voids, each with water cascading down all four sides, carrying grief to some underground resting place.”
“The memorial has turned out to be a lovely thing, but what the site still needed was something that climbed, something that spoke to the idea that emotional burdens might not only be lowered into the ground but also released into the air. Now we have it: One World Trade Center, the glass-and-steel exclamation point, all 1,776 feet of it, is nearing completion close to where the Twin Towers once stood. No doubt the new building’s official dedication will open the way to a necessary debate over its merits as architecture and urbanism, its turbulent design history, and the compromises made over the long years it took to get the thing built. But in one important respect, One World Trade Center has already succeeded. It has reclaimed the sky. And this is the view from there.”
Click the image to see an aerial video of 1 WTC.
Ray Kurzweil is widely acknowledged as a true technology guru. As Wikipedia notes: “Kurzweil was the principal inventor of the first CCD flatbed scanner, the first omni-font optical character recognition, the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first commercial text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer Kurzweil K250 capable of recreating the grand piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large-vocabulary speech recognition.”
Recently, the Wall Street Journal‘s Editor-in-Chief Gerard Baker sat down with Kurzweil for an in-depth interview: “Machines will soon be as smart as we are, says Ray Kurzweil. But not to worry. The engineering director of Google Inc. and founder and CEO of Kurzweil Technologies Inc. argues that as computers get smaller and more powerful, we won’t face a sci-fi nightmare. Instead, these machines will help us expand our capabilities.”
For print excerpts from the interview, click here.
Click the image for a video clip of the interview.