Maslow 's Hierarchy Of Need

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The reasons why an individual decides to purchase an item are numerous and complicated. It may be because of personal need, desire, or even peer pressure, but whatever the reason, it cannot necessarily be predicted on a large scale. One person’s reasoning will be totally different to another person’s, and an individual may even come to a different decision on a different day depending upon many criteria.

Abraham Maslow, (1943) provided a new theory of the hierarchy of need, as detailed in his paper "A Theory of Human Motivation". In this, Maslow described that at an individual level, people are motivated to fore fill certain basic needs. Once one need has been accomplished, there is a human desire to continue and look to achieve another
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This may help in the re-launch of an updated product, such as the Nike Pegasus Trainer, which is now on version 31 (Nike 2015), but may not help when launching a totally new product to the market. It can be seen in Figure 5.2 that there are many factors that can influence a buyer’s decision process. One way to ensure a positive outcome for a new product is via celebrity endorsements. This type of marketing can be successful, as the consumer thinks that they are buying into a piece of the celebrity lifestyle, and achieving the esteem need of Maslow’s hierarchy. There is also a down side as the desire to own an item required to fore fill this need can come at the cost of common decency and respect. This was demonstrated at the launch of a limited edition Michael Jordon gym shoe (ESPN 2011), where the release was marred by violence and vandalism, just so that consumers can say they “own” a piece of Michael Jordon’s lifestyle.

The prediction of a consumer’s personal traits or preferences is very difficult to get right, as it involves many different variables. This is illustrated by the Wheel of Consumer Behaviour devised by Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard, & Hogg (2010), shown in figure 5.3. In order for a company to make a success of a product, they must be able to account for all the possible decisions and outcomes made by a prospective consumer. The successful planning and anticipation of the desired market needs can
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