Theoretical Background Of Consumer Motivation

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Theoretical Background
So how can marketers identify the nature of consumer motivation in order to influence consumer choice? According to Reiss (2005), the guiding factor in predicting human behavior is the identification of individual differences in motivational needs. If you can identify what consumers desire and what will satisfy those desires and motives, then you can begin to predict consumer behavior. The tools for this level of identification can be found in a review of personality theory. History’s most influential personality theorists such as William McDougall, Abraham Maslow, Frederick Herzberg, and David McClelland based their theories of motivation on theoretical reasoning and patient observations; yet, none were based on large scale surveys of an individual’s self-reported driving forces (Havercamp & Reiss, 2003). Prior psychology research on motivation lacked instruments to assess a person’s motivational needs. Leading theories on motivation, therefore, linked personality and behavior, not motive and behavior (Reiss, 2005).
In contrast, the line of study on trait motivation, known as sensitivity theory, was developed to provide an analysis of personality centered on what people voluntarily reported as the motives for their behavior. Professor of psychology and psychiatry at Ohio State University, Steven Reiss, took sensitivity theory a step further to examine the multifaceted nature of human motivation, particularly intrinsic motivation, and its
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