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Marketing Psychology

Course CodeBPS107
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

Marketing Psychology is a useful course for anyone involved in marketing or wanting to improve their own marketing.

In this course, you will learn -
  • Why do people choose to buy something?
  • What influences their thinking to decide one way rather than another?
  • To develop your ability to understand how an understanding of Psychology can be applied to marketing. 
  • Consumers, customers and buyers
  • Social influences on purchasing behaviour and marketing
  • Consumerism
  • Marketing and Persuasion
  • How people decide what to buy and much more on psychological marketing theories.
This course is suitable for you if -
  • You already work in marketing and want to improve your knowledge of marketing psychology
  • You want to improve your job and careers prospects in the marketing industry by increasing your knowledge of marketing psychology
  • You run your own business or want to run your own business and need new ways to market your products

Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. People as Consumers
    • Understanding the types of psychological rewards gained by a person through buying. Distinguishing between consumers, customers and buyers?
  2. Market Segmentation
    • Understanding market segments and applying the concept of target marketing.
  3. Internal Influences
    • Perception & Personality Consumer self image, difference threshold, trait theory of personality, etc.
  4. Internal Influences
    • Motivation and Awareness Customer satisfaction, the way complaints are dealt with, stimulus generalisation and stimulus discrimination, etc
  5. Social Influences
    • Family Influences, Social groups, Developmental Influences, Peer Group Influences (Work and Leisure), Social Class and Culture
  6. Consumerism
    • Deceptive advertising, sensitivity to consumer needs, variation between perception and reality.
  7. Communication and Persuasion
    • Message Evaluation, Selection & Execution
  8. Deciding to Buy
    • Why people shop, or do not shop; surveying the market place.

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


WHAT IS MARKETING PSYCHOLOGY?

Marketing psychology is concerned with understanding people's purchasing behaviour and applying that understanding to the advertising, marketing and ultimately the selling of products or services. In this chapter we unravel what marketing psychology entails and how it can best be understood.
 
 
There are many ways that an understanding of marketing psychology can be applied to entice people into buying products. Often, consumers are unaware of subtle forms of persuasion. One of the basic ways that marketing psychology has been used includes the positioning of goods in stores. For example:
  • Floor designers in department stores place goods in vibrant displays so that customers have to walk past them when passing between departments.  
  • Food smells such as fresh bread or roast chicken in supermarkets and shopping malls immediately makes consumers feel hungry.
  • Sweets and magazines are often placed near the checkout where children may pester their parents for them whilst waiting in a queue.
  • Special offers are often stacked high at the end of aisles in full view.
 
Product placements on television are an example of how advertising can be used to alter people's perceptions about products and how they feel about them. If you see a product you are more likely to 'normalise' that product and accept it as part of everyday life. Brands can become part of social discussions and deeply entrenched within a culture.
 
 
One of the most influential was JB Watson who is widely known for his experimental work in behavioural psychology but who also made a significant contribution to advertising and marketing. He left academia to work in advertising where he applied his theories in the 1920s and 30s. He believed that marketing goods depended more on appealing to the consumer's desires and stimulating their emotional responses than it relied on their ability to reason. 
 
 
Watson also undertook rigorous market research and stressed the importance of doing so in order to understand the consumer, their needs and wants. He was also one of the first to explore brand loyalty through experiments in which participants were asked to test products blind - without knowing which brand they were. His other contributions to marketing psychology included the use of testimonials. At the time they were rarely used when advertising products other than pharmaceuticals but he was able to use them to stimulate emotional responses and develop brand appeal. 
 
The modern usage of celebrities to endorse products is an example of how emotional response and testimonials have evolved. It is not just the product which is being promoted but also the feelings of success, status, beauty and attractiveness which go with purchasing the product. 
 
 
These days marketing strategies also have to use social media to take advantage of their potential and existing market. Such strategies may be considered “trendy” for a while and can be used excessively - or at least until people become immune to them. Marketing cannot remain static. Changes happen much more quickly through the internet and trends come and go. It is therefore necessary for those in the industry to keep coming up with fresh ideas. 
 
 
 
 

Marketing Psychology in the Workplace

 
Anyone in sales, marketing or communications will be able to perform their job better, if they understand the psychology of marketing. Some people actually work as marketing psychologists, in academia or research organisations; such as the following: 
  • Determining the demographics of the target market - age, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, location, and so forth.
  • Researching the types of products and services which might appeal to the target market.
  • Applying principles of social psychology to get information to the target market.
  • Researching consumer behaviour. 
  • Collecting data about consumer behaviour from questionnaires, surveys, observations, group studies and experiments.
The scope of, and applications for marketing psychology in the world of commerce are far more extensive than just these examples; and applications for this knowledge are expanding all the time.
 
People who use marketing psychology may be involved in helping businesses and services to look at the best ways to market their products, and how to apply psychological principles to the marketing of their products. Individuals, small business owners, and others wishing to sell a product or service can also use the principles of marketing psychology to improve how they reach their intended market and make sales. 


Meet some of our academics

Sarah RedmanB.Bus (Marketing), Cert Bus.Admin Over 15 years industry experience covering marketing, PR, administration, event management and training, both in private enterprise and government; in Australia and the UK. Sarah has traveled extensively and enjoys cooking and outdoor pursuits.
Tracey JonesWidely published author, Psychologist, Manager and Lecturer. Over 10 years working with ACS and 25 years of industry experience. Qualifications include: B.Sc. (Hons) (Psychology), M.Soc.Sc (social work), Dip. SW (social work), PGCE (Education), PGD (Learning Disability Studies).
Kate GibsonKate has 12 years experience as a marketing advisor and experience as a project manager. Kate has traveled and worked in a variety of locations including London, New Zealand and Australia. Kate has a B.Soc.Sc, Post-Grad. Dip. Org Behaviour (HR).
Gavin ColePsychologist, Educator, Author, Psychotherapist. B.Sc., Psych.Cert., M. Psych. Cert.Garden Design, MACA Gavin is both a highly experienced Psychologist and tutor. Gavin has over 25 years experience in the Psychology industry, and has been working with ACS since 2001. He has worked in both Australia and England, and has been involved in writing numerous books and courses in Psychology and Counselling


Check out our eBooks

Modern MarketingThis book explores new approaches to marketing, how to adapt to a continually changing world both through online marketing, and more. Some aspects of marketing never change; but many of the well established approaches used in the past simply do not work any more. This book lays a foundation for thinking about marketing in a different way
Psychological ProfilingPsychological profiling is used to assess anyone from potential new staff and school children to serial killers. It helps you to determine someone’s personality, neuroses, mental health and career suitability. This book provides an excellent overview of psychological profiling techniques and pitfalls.
Psychology DictionaryWritten by professional psychologists, this “dictionary of psychology” contains descriptions for common terms used in Psychology. There are many terms used in the area of Psychology alone, that are explained throughout this text. Other terms have been taken from everyday language and used in a different context to describe psychological phenomena. 66 pages
Marketing PsychologyThe Marketing Psychology ebook will provide you with an understanding of the psychology behind the consumer decision making process. With 52 pages of insight into marketing psychology and consumer behaviour, this ebook help you understand consumers much more effectively. Marketing psychology is about understanding people’s purchasing behaviour and applying that understanding to the advertising, marketing and ultimately the selling of products or services.