A lifestyle is the persons pattern of living in the

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Unformatted text preview: s pattern of living in the world as expressed in activities, interests and opinions. It portrays the “whole person” interacting with his or her environment [Kotler, 2000:168 and Hansen, 1998:181]. In other words, it refers to how people live, how they spend their time and money, what activities they pursue and their attitudes and opinions about the world they live in. It is determined by consumers’ past experiences, innate characteristics and current situation [Burgess, 1998:37]. Lifestyle is affected by 25 both internal and external influences as depicted in figure 2.3. On the other hand lifestyle influences all aspects of the consumer decision-making process as shown in figure 2.5. Figure 2.5: The influence of lifestyle. Lifestyle Purchases Consumption o How o W hen o W here o W here o W ith whom o How o W hat o W ith whom o W hen o W hat Source: Adapted from Hawkins, D.I., Best, R.J., Coney, K.A., 2001, Consumer behavior, 8th edition, New York, U.S.A.: McGraw-Hill, p. 436. With reference to figure 2.5, it illustrates how lifestyle can influence the rational thinking and logic used by consumers in purchasing and consuming goods. Consumers use lifestyle to construe the events happening around them and to interpret, conceptualise and predict events as to reconcile their values with events [Whelan, 2001:20; Churchill & Peter, 1998:211; and Hansen, 1998:185]. Consumers, however, are not often aware of the role lifestyle plays in their buying behaviour [Hawkins et al., 2001:436]. For example, a child would not think along the lines of “I’ll go have a muffin at ‘BP’s Wild Bean Café’ so that I can maintain my lifestyle.” Attention is now directed towards the three categories of factors that have the potential in influencing the life style variable, namely internal influences, external influences and other influences. 26 2.4 Internal factors influencing consumer behaviour Internal influences are able to play a huge role in affecting a consumer’s behaviour and include the following issues namely, perception, memory, learning, attitude, motivation, and emotion. 2.4.1 Perception, memory and learning Perception Perception has been defined as the process by which an individual selects, organises and interprets information inputs to create a meaningful picture of the world [Hawkins et al, 2001:284; Kotler, 2000:173; and Shimp, 1997:122]. bombarded with information every day. Consumers are constantly Information processing is susceptible to a consumer’s perceptual defences, namely selective attention, selective perception and selective retention. It is impossible for consumers to allocate their time and effort in addressing each bit of information. Therefore, this concept is known as selective attention [Hawkins et al., 2001:284 and Singh et al., 2000:59]. Selective perception refers to the way which all consumers, either adults or children, perceive the information they have given their attention to. There is a tendency to manipulate and interpret information into personal meanings that will fit consumer preconceptions [Kotler, 2000:173]. Children have...
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