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Chapter 9

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MKT 510
Marla Spergel

Chapter 9: Measuring Sources Of Brand Equity Qualitative Research Techniques  Unstructured research approaches that permit a range of possible customer responses  Useful first step in exploring consumer brand recognition and product perceptions Free Association  Subjects are asked what comes to mind when they think of the brand, without any more specific probe or cue other than the product category  Marketers use free association to identify the range of possible brans association in the consumer’s mind o They provide a rough indication of the relative strength favourability and uniqueness of brand association o Coding free association responses in terms of the order of elicitation – early of late in the sequence – gives a rough measure of strength  Ex. If consumers mention “fast and convenient” as one of the first associations when given “McDonalds” as a probe, then the association is relatively strong and likely t affect consumer decisions o Associations made later are likely to be overlooked during consumer decision making  Useful questions include: o What do you like best about the brand? What are its positive aspects? o What do you dislike? What are its disadvantages? o What do you find unique about the brand? How is it different from other brands? In what ways is it the same?  Archetype research is a technique for eliciting deeply held consumer attitudes and feelings o Consumers often making purchase decisions based on factors of which they are only subconsciously aware of o Archetype: a fundamental psychological association, shared by the members of the culture, with a given cultural object  Main issues to consider in conducting free association tasks are: 1. What types of probes to give subjects 2. How to code and interpret the resulting data  First ask customers what they think of the brand a whole without reference to any particular category, followed by specific questions about particular products and aspects of the brand image Projective Techniques  Marketers must profile consumer’s brand knowledge structures as accurately and completely as possible  In some cases, consumers may feel that it would be socially unacceptable or undesirable to express their true feelings, thus they fall back on stereotypical answers they believe would be acceptable or expected by the interviewer  Projective Techniques: diagnostic tools to uncover the true opinions and feeling of consumers when they are unwilling or otherwise unable to express themselves on these matters o Marketer present consumers with an incomplete stimulus and ask them to complete it or they give consumers an ambiguous stimulus and ask them to make sense of it o The ideas is that in the process consumers will reveal some fo their true beliefs and feelings o Useful when deeply rooted personal motivations or personally or socially sensitive subjects are at issue  There are 2 types: 1. Completion and Interpretation Tasks: use of incomplete or ambiguous stimuli to elicit customer thoughts and feelings 2. Comparison Tasks: consumers are asked to convey their impressions by comparing brands to people, countries, animals etc. and are then asked follow up questions about why they made the comparisons they did Zaltman Metaphor Elicitation Technique  ZMET is based on a belief that consumers often have subconscious motives for their purchasing behaviour  A technique for eliciting interconnected constructs that influence thought and behaviour o Construct refers to an abstraction created by the researcher to capture common ideas, concepts or themes expressed by customers  Ex. the construct “ease of use” might capture the statements “simple to use,” “works without hassle” and “you don’t really have to do anything”  Study starts with a group of participants who are asked in advance to think about the research topic and select a minimum of 12 images from their own sources that represent their ideas about the research topic  Participants bring these images with them for a one-on-one, 2 hour interview with a study administrator who uses advanced interview techniques to explore the image with the participant and reveal hidden meanings through a guided conversation  Finally, participants use a computer program to collage these images, that communicate their subconscious thoughts and feelings about the topic  The guided conversation consists of a series of steps that includes some or all of the following: o Story telling – participants describe the content of each picture o Missed images – participants describe the picture or pictures that they were unable to obtain and explain their relevance o Sorting task – participants sort pictures into meaningful groups and provide a label or description for each group o Construct elicitation – participants reveal basic constructs and their interconnections using images as stimuli o The most representative picture – participants indicate pictures that describe the opposite of the brand or the task they were given o Opposite images – participants indicate pictures that describe the opposite of the brand or the task they were given o Sensory images – participants indicate what does and does not describe the opposite of the brand or the task they were given o Mental map – after reviewing all the constructs discussed and asking participants whether the constructs are accurate representations of what they meant and whether any important ideas are missing; researchers ask them to create a map connecting the constructs o Summary image – participants create a summary image (collage) using their own images to express important issues; o Vignette – participants put together a vignette or short video to help communicate important issue  ZMET is useful in understanding consumers’ images of brands, products, companies, brand equity, product concepts and designs, product usage and purchase experiences, life experiences, consumption context and attitudes toward business Brand Personality  The human characteristics or traits that consumers can attribute to a brand  The simplest and most direct way to measure it is to solicit open-ended responses to a probe such as the following: o If the brand were to come alive as a person, what would it be like? What would it do? Where would it live? What would it wear? Who would it talk to if it went to a party?  The Big Five – we can asses brand personality more definitively through adjective checklists or ratings; Jennifer Aaker created a brand personality scale t
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