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Sample Research Proposal on The Influence and Impact of

Advertising to Consumer Purchase Motive



Today's market is characterised by highly competitive organisations which

are all vying for consumer's loyalty. Firms are faced with the challenge to

maintain their own competitive edge to be able to survive and be successful.

Strategies are carefully planned and executed to gain the ultimate goal of all:

company growth. However, external factors are not the only elements which

influence growth. There are also internal factors, components working within the

organisation which shape the direction of the company.

Along with the changing business world, customers change as well,

becoming more demanding and knowledgeable than before. In turn, company

management had shifted their focus on their clients or customers so as to stay

successfully in business. This transition meant that organisations have to

completely reformulate their conventional business aims and purposes from

being process-focused to customer-centred. Hence, in order to bring out

exceptional customer services within the company operations, the management

should employ fine-tuned organisational restructuring. Moreover, employing

proactive customer commitment involves the consideration on culture and

infrastructure (Lowenstein, 1997).

Despite the economic and technological conditions that make it possible

now to promote products and services in a larger consumer market, there are

other factors that still need to be considered for a business organisation reach

out easier to their target market. Looking into the characteristics and thought

processes of the people still holds as the most significant factor to be looked into
by the individuals in the field of sales and marketing. The large scope of market

can pose a hindrance to a successful marketing strategy in terms of over

generalised definition of the target or niche market.

Review of Related Literature

According to Perner (2003) the use of a two-sided appeal strategy by

companies can be uncertain. In some cases, the strategy backfires and the

consumer forms a more negative opinion of the product (Perner, 2003). This

appears to be especially the case for low involvement products, where the

consumer may merely notice that something negative is being said while not

taking the time to discover the significance of this predicament and compensating


The major objective of marketing is to regard the product as a service

from the viewpoint of its connecting value rather than its use value It is more

imperative for the company to know how its product can provide service and

support the tribe in its very being, than how to deliver the offer to the consumer.

(Cova, B. & Cova V., 2002) Here the belief of ritual is significantly essential to

depict the way companies marketed to the in-line roller tribe ("intensive tribal

marketing"). According to Kotler, P & Armstrong, G (2001), rituals provide a social

reality with permanence. Like every social relationship requires some kin of ritual

to establish and sustain it self, so too a tribe relies on rituals to pronounce its

existence and sustain its membership.

In a marketplace where there is often little differentiation between brands,

the organisation, its people, its policies and its attitude can often be the point of

difference. In many product categories the service, back-up and support is as

important as the product itself. Customers need to have confidence in the

organisation. Consumer crises such as product recalls usually relate to one

product but they will put other products, brands and even the whole company

under the spotlight. Companies are finding it increasingly difficult to remain

anonymous behind their brands. Consumers are more aware than ever before,

and with the proliferation of media titles and access to new media, they have

access to more information.

For many companies the brand is the company which means that it's

necessary to invest in the brand and the corporate reputation. But reputation has

to be earned. It is an asset with a value as important as any other within an

organisation. And like all assets it has to be managed with its own disciplines,

budgets and ROI (return on investment) criteria. Good reputation is vital to

support marketing. In good times it provides that extra bonus. In bad times it

can minimise problems. And it can help recruit better people and attract the best

business partners.

Some researchers have hypothesised that consumer's personality profiles

affect decision making in their assessments of credibility in advertising content.

As a result, consumers are more responsive to advertising claims tailored to a

specific personality profile in product ads than to advertising claims not tailored to

a specific personality profile. Therefore, the current research explores

consumers' response tendencies to advertising claims when the source of such

claims is identified as tailored to a specific personality profile or not tailored to a

specific personality profile. The study also examines the relative impact of

tailoring the advertisement to a specific personality profile on consumers'

assessments of credibility in advertising content. This can be accomplished by

examining whether consumers' beliefs', competency, or perceived goodwill are

affected by credibility information when advertisements are tailored to a specific

personality profile versus advertisements not tailored to a specific personality

profile. Accordingly, advertising claims whose credibility has been challenged by

governmental or by consumer groups are more likely to affect consumers' action

than are unchallenged advertising claims. The findings have implications for

understanding the role of personality profiles in shaping visual imagery and

message content of advertising claims.

In the field of advertising research, as it applies to exploratory correlation

between personality and advertising message response, there is no dearth of

literature and we have a long history surrounding the myriad of topics associated

with this concept (Plummer, 2000). However, given the vast literature present,

there is an absence of consensus in both theories and frameworks that address

much of the often conflicting reasons of advertising's interaction in consumer

decision-making. Accordingly, there have been weak empirical relationships

found between prediction of product use or choice with personality behaviour.

(Lastovicka, JL., Erich A., & Joachimsthaler, 1988) Some researchers have,

however, demonstrated and analysed brand personality to the extent that

effective designs can aid in their influence (Aaker, 1997; Greengrove, 2002; Neal

and Wurst, 2001). Attempts at segmenting markets on the basis of personality

similarities and differences have not achieved researchers' desired results. The

main reason for disappointing results is that research efforts have primarily

focused on profiling exercises rather than putting their endeavours into theories

based on consumer personalities (Plummer, 2000). Accordingly, empirical

personality work has tended to be weak because trait measures often have

questionable reliability, validity, and the traits investigated lacked the conceptual

relevance to the behaviour being studied (Lastovicka, John L., Erich A.,

Joachimsthaler, 1988). Accordingly, there has been ample research on source

effects that concentrated on the impact of the competence, believability, and

trustworthiness of the spokesperson in the fields of psychology, advertising, and

communication literature (Bush, Moncrief, and Ziethaml 1987). There is,

however, little research on relative impact of personality profiles on consumers'

assessments of credibility in advertising content.

Aim of the Study

This research will conduct an experimental study to examine the effect of

advertising on consumer purchase motive or preferences and loyalty in

Australian setting. The research will perform surveys in order to obtain needed

information to attain the objectives of the study. Furthermore, this study would

assess relevant literature review on the same topic.


This study will examine and evaluate the impact of advertising on the

consumer buying behaviour and loyalty in regards to the product/service

promotion of different businesses in India. Survey will be used in this study to

study the topic area and also by getting the This research aspires to study the

topic through reviewing related articles and also by getting the insight of

knowledgeable or informed individuals regarding the topic. These individuals are

the consumers or customers of different products and services offered by

different business organisations in India.

The major objective of this study is to observe and determine the impact

of advertising to the purchasing motive, loyalty and preferences of consumers.

Moreover, this study will focus on the following objectives:

1. To examine the awareness of the consumers about advertised


2. To examine if these advertisements of different businesses in

Australian affect the purchasing motive, preferences and loyalty of their


Significance of the Research

This study will be a significant endeavour in promoting advertising
awareness among the citizen of Australia. This study will be beneficial to the
consumers and business industries in Australia particularly in product/service
promotion. By understanding the needs of the consumers and the benefits of
effective advertisement, these business industries will be assured of a
competitive advantage. Moreover, this research will provide recommendations on
how to evaluate the performance of a certain institution in accordance to their
advertisement or promotion of product/services.

Research Questions

While researchers have examined varying formats for presenting

credibility information, they have not compared the relative impact of presenting

the same information in advertisements tailored to personality profiles. The

current study was designed to determine, if consumers are more responsive

to advertising claims when the source is identified as credible, i.e. competent,

believable or has some good will component in product advertisements tailored

to a specific personality profile? For clarity, it attempts to evaluate if advertising

affects the purchasing motive, loyalty and preferences of consumers Thus, to

address this issue, the first research question is:

1. Do consumers' beliefs about advertised products differ when the ad content of

an advertising claim to which consumers are exposed is specifically tailored to

their buying preferences or purchase motives?

While advertisements often include information that cross cut all

personality profiles, some consumers ignore some of this information and rely

primarily on advertising claims and on personal experience in forming judgments

about advertised products. On the other hand, some consumers defer decisions

until the advertising claims have some credibility behind them before making

product purchase decisions. Therefore, the current studies compares consumers'

beliefs about advertised products either when consumers are exposed to

advertising claims, through ad content, specifically tailored to their personality

profile or are exposed to advertising claims, through ad content, not specifically

tailored to their personality profile.

There are distinct processing differences between dominant, influencing,

steadiness and conscientiousness individuals. These differences should affect

how consumers perceive and evaluate information provided by advertising

message and imagery. The first question explores whether advertisements

containing dominant, influencing, steadiness, conscientiousness type messages

or visuals are more believable by those corresponding personality behaviour

consumers as compared to advertisements that contain incongruous type

messages or visuals. The basic hypothesis is that advertisements containing ad

content that is consistent with subjects' perceiving/type behaviour preferences

will be viewed as believable compared to advertisements that contain ad content

that is inconsistent with their perceiving-type preferences. Therefore:

1.) Response tendencies. Predictor (Independent)

2.) Believability of ad content Criterion (Dependent)

H1: Individuals will believe advertisements tailored to their specific response

tendencies more (less) than advertisements tailored contrary to their response


Response tendencies associated with the advertisement will also transfer

to the product being advertised (MacKenzie, Lutz, and Belch, 1986). This will

result in a direct effect on the response tendencies toward the brand being

advertised and have an indirect effect on future predicted behaviour.

H2: Individuals will believe advertisements tailored to their specific response

tendency more (less) than advertisements tailored contrary to their response


Thus, the second research question is:

2. Do consumers' beliefs about advertised products differ when consumers are

exposed to advertising claims specifically tailored by their preferences that

include credibility information versus when consumers are exposed to

advertising claims that are specifically tailored by their preferences that do not

include credibility information? Therefore:

1.) Response tendencies. Predictor (Independent)

2.) Credibility of ad content Criterion (Dependent)

H1: Individuals will find advertisements more credible where belief supporting

information is included in the ad that is tailored to their specific response

tendencies more (less) than advertisements where belief supporting information

is included in the ad that is tailored contrary to their response tendencies.

H2: Individuals will believe advertisements tailored to their specific response

tendency more (less) than advertisements tailored contrary to their response


While consumers' processing of credibility information and advertising

claims specifically tailored to personality profiles will be examined previously, the

credibility information may be consistent with the advertising claims presented to

consumers. However, these studies do not shed much light on the problem of

advertising claims that are perceived as potentially misleading. Therefore, the

current study examines the impact on consumer beliefs of including credibility

information along with advertising claims that have been contested by the

Government or consumer groups.


The research method that will be used for this study will be qualitative

method combined with descriptive method. With the subject of the study focusing

on the characteristics and consumer behaviour of those who purchase a certain

product, it will be better to gain the analysis of the respondents to the

advertisement, and couple it through the use of the descriptive research method

will be highly competent in depicting the behaviours of the consumers. Moreover,

qualitative coupled with descriptive methods are more likely to be used for the

analysis and the study of the culture and their effect on society, which makes it

the ideal method to be used for the study of their causes and effects, as well as

helps with the possibility in isolating several factors; it also helps to provide

closure with regard to the outcome of the study that focuses on qualitative

analyses backed by the statistical evidence (Anzul, Ely, Friedman et al, 1991:

210) as well as continuity that occurs within the community despite the possible

biases that this may bring to the study (Yow, 2004).

With this, it is then understood that the study will be focusing on

information gathered from both respondents and from the researcher's account

and notes concerning the advertisements. Gathered information will lend to the

credibility of the study and is important to isolate factors that may have affected

the success of an advertised product. Descriptive analyses will also study the

methods used by business organisations to ensure that the advertisements reach

out to the correct group of people. As such, the information-gathering will then be

based on the method of the research being done and will also be utilising a
combination of both information gathered from the respondents as with the

information taken from the literatures.


One hundred and eighty adults who are their households' primary

shoppers will be recruited at two large regional shopping malls in a major

metropolitan area on the West Coast. A quota sample will be used so that for

each of the three treatments, half of the respondents selected will be between

the ages of 21 and 35 years old and half of the respondents will be 35 years of

age and older. This procedure will be used to ensure that there is sufficient

representation of both younger and older respondents. Aside from Australian

respondents, approximately there would be 10 percent of African-American,

Asian, or Hispanic respondents. A lottery ticket will be offered as an incentive to



For the research design, the use of survey and interview questionnaires

will be initiated. The questionnaire is prepared based on the research questions

that were presented. This is to ensure that the questions that will be asked from

the respondents will be able to yield the necessary information for the formulation

of the conclusion. Along with a letter to the respondents, the questionnaire will

contain the following: the first part is for knowing the basic characteristics of the

respondents for their identification; the second part focuses on the perceived

methods that the product uses for addressing the needs of their target

consumers; the third focuses on the consumers' preferences and loyalty with

regards to information on the product; finally, the fourth is on the effects of the

product's advertisements to the consumers.

Together, these questions will be used for the gathering of information

from the respondents and will assist in putting together an assessment of the

consumers' perception of product advertising methods.

As discussed, the method of analysis that this study will be using is based

on the gathered information that provide methods of assessing the

characteristics and the consumer behaviours especially based on the media that

presents the product. Since the products are being advertised using several

medias that will be included in this study, limited however to television and

magazine advertisements, these will be used to evaluate how products will

impact the different classes. The primary method of analysis that will be used for

this study, however, will be focused on the information gathered from the

respondents. Careful assessment must be done on the literatures themselves

and notes were taken that helped in finding information that related primarily to

the consumer behaviour and how culture affects the choices that the customers

make. A combination of the information will be helpful for the study.

One of the problems that the researcher must deal with is to ensure that

biases will not be given to the study; as the information will be based primarily on

the information gathered from the literatures, which are secondary sources, this

may be a problem that the researcher may face. As such, the researcher will

then strive to ensure that the method of information analysis will be conducted in

a very objective manner, and will not in any way affect the outcome of the study.

Products and Advertising Claims

Two brands from each of the following product categories will be selected:

computers, automobiles, soup, clothing, and beverage. For each category, one of

the brands will make an advertising claim that has been contested by a

consumer group or the Government, and one of the brands will make an
advertising claim that is uncontested.

A control brand with similar product characteristics and credibility

information as the brand with the contested advertising claim will be selected for

each of the products.


Before data collection will begin, a pilot test will be conducted at one of the

mall intercepts where the surveys will be administered. Five subjects will be

recruited and each subject will be taken to an office in the mall where the

questionnaire can be administered. This will flush out any problems encountered

with the subjects' understanding or completion of the survey. Each respondent

will be timed to complete the survey.

Each subject will be brought into an office and an explanation and purpose

of the study and the procedure will be given as follows. "This study involves your

reaction to information taken from a number of advertisements. We will be

showing you these advertisements and asking you a number of questions about

them. Please take as long as is necessary to become familiar with the

information in these advertisements."

Then, each participant will be given a copy of each stimulus and told to

look at the material for as long as desired. Once the participant is finished looking

at the stimulus, the information will be removed and a series of questions will be

asked to measure their beliefs about the brand on nine credibility-related

attributes: believability, competence, trustworthiness, reliability, acceptability,

sureness, certainty, persuasion, and good will towards others. For example, the

respondent will be asked, "Based on the information in the advertisement, tell me

the number between one and five that indicates how strongly you agree or

disagree that the product in the ad is believable." Accordingly, the same question

for trustworthiness, reliability, etc.

Each respondent would be shown a card with the scale points listed from

one (strongly disagree) to five (strongly agree). This procedure could be repeated

for each of the nine attributes. However, the statement could be reworded

according to the attribute in question. For example, participants could be told to

give a number between one and five that indicated how strongly they agreed or

disagreed that the advertisement, using soup as an example, "is low in fat" or

"reduces the risk of heart disease."

Next, the respondent could be shown a second stimulus (ad) and asked to

rate the product on the same nine credibility-related attributes, using the same

five-point scale. The process would continue for the five product categories. After

exposure to ten stimuli and after all belief ratings were obtained, a count would

be done. Accordingly, each respondent would answer a series of questions about

their shopping habits, such as the importance and use of credibility information.

Demographic data would be collected at the end of the questionnaire.

Ethical Consideration

The data generated will be used solely to understand the impact of

advertising to product consumers in Australia. Furthermore, the researcher is

solely responsible for conducting the whole research process and shall abide all

the policies regarding the organisation as well as the university. The data will not

be transferable for any means in person or organisation. The research is being

done according to the guidelines and rules and regulations of the university. The

researcher does not belong to any professional bodies to share the outcome of

the research results. The four stages of ethics in doing research are followed by
the way of a good design, modes of data collection, analysis of data and for

proper dissemination. Both confidentiality and anonymity will be maintained of

the informants who have participated or shared information in the research.

There will be no Coercion or force to take advantage from the informants. Full

voluntary guarantee will be taken from the informants. Due consideration and

approval will be taken from the organisation which is being studied. Prior

objectives and motive of the research will be intimated. There shall be no

misrepresentation or misuse of the data collected from the organisation. Strict

confidentiality shall be maintained. Finally, the University for dissemination of

academic purposes might take the interview results.