Means-End_chains - in assessing motivations and what should...

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University of Southern California Marshall School of Business BUAD 307 Lars Perner, Ph.D., Instructor Marketing Fundamentals Fall, 2011 MEANS-END CHAINS Means-end chains are used to “probe” for the ultimate motivations for consumer behavior. For example, a person may buy a car not because of its large engine per se , but rather because of the perceived consequences of this characteristic: Here, the consumer reasons—or unconsciously concludes—that a large engine is likely to result in faster acceleration, which, in turn, will give the impression of greater performance, leading the person to feel greater power and in turn experience an enhanced self-esteem. Analysis of means-end chains—also known as laddering in the advertising industry—is helpful
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Unformatted text preview: in assessing motivations and what should be stressed in advertisements and positioning. Please note: A chain must start with a concrete attribute—e.g., engine size [of a car], high quality cloth [of a suit], compactness [of an MP3 player]. The product category is NOT an attribute. The chain must move toward an “end goal”—something the consumer desires to obtain for its own sake (e.g., self-esteem, happiness, comfort). Each step must logically lead to the next one. One step should NOT lead to a “parallel” benefit that does not result directly from the prior step. Means-end chains generally only portray one path. Different chains can be drawn to show different “means-end” benefit paths....
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