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Consumer Learning, Memory & Involvement

Lecture 3 MBA 2K11

Learning Objectives
It is important to understand how: • Consumers learn about products and services • Conditioning results in learning • Learned associations with brands generalize to other products, and why is this important to marketers • Classical and instrumental conditioning differ • We learn about products by observing others’ behavior

What is learning?

Learning  Learning: a relatively permanent change in behavior caused by experience The process by which individuals acquire the purchase and consumption knowledge and experience that they apply to future related behavior  4 .

relatively permanent change in behavior that is caused by experience .

for example. even for products we don’t personally use. We call this casual. unintentional acquisition of knowledge incidental learning .Incidental learning We learn even when we don’t try: We recognize many brand names and hum many product jingles.

Two Major Learning Theories Behavioral Learning • Based on observable behaviors (responses) that occur as the result of exposure to stimuli 7 Cognitive Learning • Learning based on mental information processing • Often in response to problem solving .

Behavioral Learning Consumer Stimulus Response .

Conditioning Theories PAVLOV Classical SKINNER Instrumental/Operant .

Classical Conditioning Unconditioned Stimulus Unconditioned Response Meat Salivate Bell Conditioned Stimulus Conditioned Response .

Classical Conditioning • A behavioral learning theory according to which a stimulus is paired with another stimulus that elicits a known response that serves to produce the same response when used alone. 11 .

12 .Example….

Soon. The next time you see a sign for that restaurant. your dog begins wagging its tail when the door squeaks.Few more…. The door to your house squeaks loudly when you open it. The next time you hear “This won’t hurt” you cringe in fear. The nurse says “Now this won’t hurt a bit” just before stabbing you with a needle. Soon. You have a meal at a fast food restaurant that causes food poisoning. you feel nauseous 13 .     Your partner always uses the same shampoo. the smell of that shampoo makes you feel happy..

Repetition Conditioning effects are more likely to occur after the conditioned stimulus (CS) and the unconditioned stimulus (UCS) have been paired several times. Many classic advertising campaigns consist of product slogans repeated often to enhance recall. Repeated exposures increase the strength of the associations. .

Strategic Applications of Classical Conditioning Basic Concepts     Repetition Stimulus generalization Stimulus discrimination Increases the association between the conditioned and unconditioned stimulus Slows the pace of forgetting Advertising wearout is a problem   15 .

Why Did Honda Use Two Different Ads to Advertise the Same Product? 16 .

Repetition of the Message with Varied Ads Results in More Information Processing by the Consumer 17 .

Strategic Applications of Classical Conditioning Basic Concepts     Repetition Stimulus generalization Stimulus discrimination Having the same response to slightly different stimuli Helps “me-too” products to succeed Useful in:      product extensions family branding licensing 18 .

Stimulus Generalization .

Strategic Applications of Classical Conditioning Basic Concepts     Repetition Stimulus generalization Stimulus discrimination Selection of a stimulus different from competing brand stimuli  Opposite of stimulus generalization This discrimination is the basis of positioning which looks for unique ways to fill needs  20 .

Stimulus Discrimination .

– 22 .Discussion Question • For Coca-Cola beverage company: – How have they used classical conditioning in their marketing? Identify the unconditioned and conditioned stimuli. the conditioned and unconditioned response.

Instrumental conditioning .

Instrumental (Operant) Conditioning • Instrumental conditioning (operant conditioning) occurs as the individual learns to perform behaviors that produce positive outcomes and to avoid those that yield negative outcomes. • Although responses in classical conditioning are involuntary and fairly simple. those in instrumental conditioning are made deliberately to obtain a goal and may be more complex 24 .

A Model of Instrumental Conditioning 25 .


We learn the hard way not to repeat these behaviors (a woman being ridiculed for wearing the wrong perfume).When the environment provides positive reinforcement in the form of a reward.  Negative reinforcement also strengthens responses so that appropriate behavior is learned (a woman sitting at home alone because she is not wearing a certain perfume). punishment occurs when a response is followed by unpleasant events.  27 . the response is strengthened and appropriate behavior is learned (a woman wearing perfume and receiving a compliment).  In contrast to situations where we learn to do certain things to avoid unpleasantness.

Reinforcement of Behavior Extinction • A learned response is no longer reinforced. it diminishes to the extent of extinction • The link is eliminated between stimulus and reward 28 Forgetting • The reinforcement is forgotten .


When using variable-interval reinforcement. the first response made brings the reward. The schedule motivates you to continue performing the same behavior over and over. the time that must pass before one gets reinforced varies based on some average For fixed-ratio reinforcement. 30 . one is reinforced after a certain number of responses but you don’t know how many responses are required. In variable-ratio reinforcement.    When fixed-interval reinforcement is used. reinforcement occurs only after a fixed number of responses.

Strategic Applications of Instrumental Conditioning  Customer Satisfaction (Positive Reinforcement) Shaping (having the reinforcement before the behavior occurs) Massed versus Distributed Learning   31 .