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1. Select a product with which you are familiar. What stage is your selected product at in the product life cycle? Provide rationale for your answer. Based on your knowledge of the product life cycle, what types of changes will occur to your selected product as it continues through the product life cycle?

How will this affect the marketing of your selected product?

2. Select a product or service. Then select three different organizations that provide your selected product or service and compare the prices associated with your selected product or service. What is the difference between the prices among the different organizations?

What is the rationale for this difference?

3. I always thought Dell Computer Co. shipped a good, reliable product. I still do — and I own a few of them. There are a lot of other hardware vendors I like too, like HP and Apple. I own all these brands at the moment.

A while back I phoned Dell Computer support on behalf of a relative’s computer as there were a couple of issues with it. Once I stepped through the phone tree (first irritation), I arrived at an option where I could obtain “USA-based English speaking support” — at a premium price. Otherwise, I could continue on to the no-cost regular support–the kind with accent-laden communication.

That was it for me with Dell Computer Co. That was the moment I dropped Dell Computer Co. from my evoked set of PC vendors.

Your reading this week on buyer/consumer behavior, deals with the psychology of product purchase decision-making. Evoked Set is discussed.

Why must a marketer’s offering be in the consumer’s evoked set?

4. Check out the attached chart…Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Maslow was attempting to understand and describe motivation. Marketers have borrowed the model and applied it to product marketing…attempting to provide the buying reasons to the consumer that their motivations are manifesting.

Where does your insight of needing to be heard and listened to in addition to owning the product log into Maslow’s theory?

5. The things we humans need are called “needs.” We want something to fulfill those needs. We are hungry. Food is a need. Perhaps we want aBig Mac or a Subway to satisfy the need.

Marketer’s can create real and artifical demand. None of us need fireworks on the Fourth of July. None of us need a diamond ring. But through persuasive marketing, we determine we want some fireworks and we want a diamond ring to give to the one we love, or want one given to us a sign of love for us. To satisfy real hunger, the marketer proposes a Big Mac and makes it look irresistable…so the hungry human will want it.

How about a dozen roses?

Does my very rich brother need several high-end BMW’s in his garage?

The bus would get him from point A to point B — the same utility provided by the BMWs.

The only real necessities (needs) in life are biological, food, clothing, shelter, transportation, and medical care. Abraham Maslow said we humans experience a hierarchy of needs, and we’ll meet or fulfill the needs in order, starting at the bottom of the pyramid and working up the pyramid only as the lower order needs are satisfied. We are motivated to do so.

In other words, if we don’t have shoes to wear, we’re not worrying much about buying items like sailboats that show our social status.

What is my rich brother doing when he buys many very expensive BMWs?

Where is he on the pyramid?

Can you see how marketers can tie into these human needs, with proposed wants, to satisfy?

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