The study of culture is the study of all aspects of a society. It is the language, knowledge, laws, and customs that give that society its distinctive character and personality. In the context of consumer behaviour, culture is defined as the sum total of learned behaviours, beliefs, values, customs that serve to regulate the consumer behaviour of members of a particular society.
Beliefs and Values are guiding principles while customs are the usual and accepted norms of behaviour.
The impact of the culture on the society is so natural and so ingrained that its influence on behaviours is rarely noted. It is like fish distinguishing water.
Culture offers orders, direction and guidance to members of society in all phases of human problem solving.
Culture is dynamic and gradually and continually evolves to meet the needs of the society.
Culture is learned as a part of the social experience. Children acquire a set of beliefs, values and customs, which constitutes the culture,from the environment. These beliefs, values and customs are acquired through formal learning, informal learning and technical learning.
Advertising enhances formal learning by reinforcing desired modes of behavior and expectations; it enhances informal learning by providing models for behaviour.
Culture is communicated to members of society through a common language and through commonly shared symbols. Because the human mind has the ability to absorb and to process symbolic communication, marketers can successfully promote both tangible and intangible products and product concepts to consumers through mass media.
All the elements in the marketing mix serve to communicate symbolically with the audience, Products project an image of their own, so does promotion. Price and Retail outlets symbolically convey messages concerning the quality of the product.
The elements of culture are transmitted by 3 pervasive social institutions; the family, the schools and the church. A fourth social institution that plays a major role in the transmission of culture is the mass media, both through editorial content and through advertising.
A wide range of measurement techniques is used to study culture. The range includes Projective Techniques,attitude measurement methods, field observation,participant observation, content analysis and value measurement survey techniques.
What are you Consumer Groups? What are their Cultures? How are you understanding and leveraging that for your business development and client engagement?
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