In this post, I’m going to discuss the problems of managing the customers’ perception and behavior. I do believe that the perception is the basic factor for sales increase, regardless of the services/goods you promote. The understanding of key concepts of clients’ perception will help you to advertise your brand much better, whether it’s a website that writes essays or a mobile APP.
Reflexes and Attention as the Base of Customers’ Behavior
Reflexes and attention are one of the crucial factors of managing product perception. Product Managers and Product Marketing Managers try to find a balance between unconditional and conditional reflexes and activities of product and brand. They deal with the following reflexes:
# Alimentary reflexes,
which are changes of secretory and motor operation of the digestive canal in response to stimulation of mouth receptors and organs of the digestive tract by the appearance and smell of the product.
# Defensive reflexes:
# Unconditional– muscle contractions in response to tactile or painful irritations of the skin and mucous membranes.
# Conditional– muscle contractions in response to neutral stimuli that previously were accompanied by immediate irritation caused by defensive reflexes, and so turned to conditioned stimuli of these reflexes.
# Unconditional indicative reflexes
– reflexes that are caused by sudden changes in the environment or within the body and are reflected in the behavior of a person.
For a potential customer, the product exposure, wherever it may be, is a set of external factors, activating its unconditional and conditional reflexes. Having encountered the product for the first time, the potential customer may see the product environment (e.g. a WEB page) as a maze, chaos of sensations, which over time takes an organized form. The potential customer begins to distinguish objects, that is, achieved a harmony with the environment.
Proceeding from the above, the ultimate task of a Product Marketing Manager is to push the potential customer to the purchase by controlling the qualitative and quantitative components of perception. The Product Marketing Manager has to avoid the exposure of negative stimuli and prevent the formation of unwanted reflections, such as defense, which usually occurs as a result of the purchase of defective goods, the obsessive behavior of sellers, an irritable user experience, etc.
The need for a product can be called not only directly but also indirectly, i.e. using components of the environment, which have nothing in common with an advertised good. That’s why modern advertising is not just the product and its properties, but also an accompaniment in the form of music, light, color, etc., which are independent stimulators and motifs that push buyers to make a purchase.
The Distribution of Cognitive Resources in Space and in Time
Cognitive resources are the mental ability required to perform various actions on the processing of information coming from the external environment. Such resources are of great interest, especially in the development of the communication policy and specific measures aimed at attracting the attention of consumers to products and, consequently, at the creation of a corporate identity.
Market participants are fighting for customers cognitive resources as the most valuable sales stimulant. The major components of cognitive human resources are:
that reflect the individual psychological characteristics of a person.
that depends on the distribution of cognitive resources on products. The products that get more cognitive resources are more likely to be sold. In marketing, attention is the direction and focus of consciousness on a particular object. It expresses the relationship between a subject and an object: on the one hand, the subject (shop visitor) directs attention to an object (product); on the other – the object (product) attracts the attention of the subject (the visitor). The attention has a number of characteristics:
# The direction of attention
which is the search and selection of a particular product. It is a state when the buyer is able to perceive the product, having a minimum of information and other stimuli.
# The focus of attention
which is a state of absorption of a buyer by a certain product. There are passive (occurs depending on the nature of the object: noise, bright light, etc. attract attention against the will of the visitor) and active (attention due to the consciously set goals, that is, when the good was chosen consciously) focus.
# The volume of attention
which is a number of objects on which the customer focuses his attention at the same time. The average attention span is not more than 7–9 objects. It means that the customer mustn’t be overloaded with a large number of homogeneous goods. The brand has to adapt its activities under this characteristic, striving to alternate the sequences of product placement and heir positioning on the trading floor.
# The stability of attention
which is the duration of attention. To maintain the attention, marketers alternate tension and relaxation by the appropriate placement of products with the different informational load.
A Product Marketing Manager has to understand the dynamics of the passage of visitors along the real or virtual journey and rationally allocate the attention by placing the products in the best way.
Knowledge of the features of perception will help you to efficiently use the limited capacity of the visitors’ attention and to properly direct the marketing efforts in order to convert as many visitors into loyal clients as possible.