Part 1: Personal Consumer Behavior Journal (3-4 pages)
Over three one-week periods, you will keep a diary of your purchasing activity. Very simply, this will include listing the products, the time, and the location where you made the purchase. You’ll do this on a daily basis over each of the three one-week periods. The effort is to capture specific products and/or brands in your consumer behavior patterns, and to those ends you can ignore most fresh produce (a head of lettuce, unless the brand is known, e.g., Dole bananas). Please do not collect data for 21 disparate days. We’re trying to find patterns in your behavior. The optimum collection period is 21 straight days, but the next best can be three separate seven-day-straight periods.
At the end of each seven-day period (seven consecutive days), you will identify three products you seem to “consume” most regularly or consistently. Thinking back on that week, answer the following questions in your journal for each product:
- Why did you select that product over a competing brand or product?
- Was it convenient, for example, or did you have to go out of your way because of desire? Was it on sale? Was it a perceived quality matter?
- Articulate your satisfaction/dissatisfaction with the product and/or the purchase experience.
Discuss your intent to continue that purchase (or note if you decided to change your purchase pattern and why).
Part 2: Consumer Behavior Essay (5-7 pages)
At the end of the three weeks, choose three key products. Your paper should cover the following assessment for each of the three products:
Discuss the one major psychological factor or process (e.g., peer pressure, learned behavior, general advertising, subliminal messages, image, convenience, price, etc.) that contributed most to your pattern of consumption. Be sure to discuss at least one different process for each of the three products.
Provide a summary of the psychological process that you’re describing. This summary should demonstrate that you understand what the process involves, how it works, how it influences consumer behavior in general, and how it is relevant to your purchasing pattern.
Be sure to clearly describe both the psychological process and its application to your specific purchase pattern. Give specific reasons why you think it was that process that was most influential for that product.
To successfully complete this Portfolio, you must:
- Submit a total of 8-12 pages, not including title or reference pages
- Include at least six outside sources that support your discussion.