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How Do Advertisers Try To Use Group Influence?

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Marketing
Wordcount: 1815 words Published: 25th Apr 2017

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ABSTRACT: This paper aims at presenting ‘How do advertisers try to use ‘group influence’? And presenting relevant examples with the explanation related to the topic, and providing the relevant literature about the main topic.

INTRODUCTION: In this paper primarily presenting relevant data related to the ‘Group influence’, it will include what is exactly meant by group influence, explaining about different types of group influence, and how it will affect the marketing environment basically. It will include how modern marketing world advertisers effectively using this concept ‘group influence’. Basically a group is meant by two or more number of individuals who share their thoughts, ideas, norms and values or a number of individuals will share their beliefs and goals with another individuals.

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Basically an individual or Consumer admire many different types of groups and these individuals thoughts or purchasing decisions are influenced by others or consumer can accept a desire delivered by other individual. A reference group is “an actual or imaginary individual or group conceived of having significant relevance upon an individual’s evaluations, aspirations, or behavior” (Cohen & Golden, 1972). This reference group’s effect or influence consumers in 3 ways. These are, Informational, utilitarian, and value- expressive. The referent we can consider any kind of figure and their impacts on many individuals like (football teams or the late Mother Teresa) or a group or individual whose influence is confined to the consumer’s immediate environment. This reference groups that basically affect the consumption, it will include team members, class mates, fellow football enthusiasts, parents or even sports club such as Manchester United.

Especially some kind of persons or individuals or groups exerts a higher influence than other individuals and affects a higher range of consumption decisions. For example, parents will play vital role in building up of our values towards many important things in the life, those are thoughts about the education, marriage, and goals of the life. This kind of influence is called ‘normative influence’ i.e. reference groups help to set and make compulsory basic fundamental standards of behavior. ‘Comparative influence’ can be described as the decisions of consumers will be effected by specific brands such as Harley- Davidson Club or Manchester United fan club might exert this kind of influence.

According to Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard and Hogg, 2006, there are three reference group influences, those are:

Informational influence.

Utilitarian influence.

Value- expressive influence.

Informational influence: The individual get the knowledge or information about different brands from an organization of professionals or independent group of experts. Individual get the information from professional those who works near to the product or service. Consumer will get the brand related information by comparing with the different brands, these all will get from the friends, relatives or from a person who have reliable knowledge about the brands. Individual will influenced by an independent testing agency. Consumers will get the knowledge by observing what experts do (such as observing the type of brand used by police drive or the brand of television that repairmen buy), these all influences the individuals choice of a brand.

Utilitarian Influence: The consumers purchasing of particular brand is depends or influenced by their preferences, The individual’s decision to purchase the product of certain brands will influenced by the preferences of other people(who has social interaction with the consumer) and it’s also influenced by the preferences of his or her family member. “The desire to satisfy the expectations that others have of him or her has an impact on individual’s brand choice” (Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard and Hogg, 2006).

Value- expressive influence: The individual might think or feels that using or purchasing the particular brand product will enhance the image others have of him or her, consumer will think that it would be better or looking good to be wear the product like the one who appear in the advertisements show using particular brand of the product. An individual might also feels like people who purchase or use special brands are respected or admired by other people, and also consumer will think while purchasing how he would like to appear in the society like sports person , business man or good parent.

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Other Categories of Groups:

Formal Vs Informal Groups: Organizations with a recognized structure is called formal groups, informal groups in the sense group of friends and neighbors. Marketers will have the more control over the influencing of formal groups because these groups are easily accessible and identifiable. Normally, small, informal groups will have a more influence on individual consumers. This type of groups involved in each and every ones day lives, because these are high in normative influence. Formal groups are normally larger, formal groups inclined to be more activity specific and they are high in Comparative influence.

Membership and Aspirational groups: Groups that will directly influence and to which a person belongs are called membership groups. A group to which an individual wishes to belong called Aspirational group, this Aspirational reference groups comprise idealized figures such as successful business people, performers or athletes.

Associative Vs Dissociative groups: These groups will include who more reliably represent the individuals near equals or current equals like, neighbors, coworkers or member of clubs, and organizations. The other group Dissociative reference group “includes people that the individual would not like to be like” (Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard and Hogg, 2006 ), for example, the Gap band stores came out because many youngsters wanted to actively dissociate from old age people or from parents and un cool people.

Identificational reference groups: Some sort of people will have the tendency to compare themselves with those who are similar, “this kind of people often swayed by knowing how people like themselves conduct their lives” (Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard and Hogg, 2006).

Positive and negative reference groups: Reference groups will have the positive or negative influence on consumption behaviours. In most number of the cases, consumers build their behaviour structure to be consistent with what they think the group expects of them.

Virtual Communities: The collection of people whose online interactions are based on shared enthusiasm about different things. Most of membership reference groups consisted of people who had face to face contact, now a day’s it’s possible to share feelings and thoughts with other people those who have not met them or probable never will. Virtual communities come in many different forms, those are, and multi- user dungeons (MUD); rooms, rings and lists; Boards and Blogs, and brand communities.

How do Advertisers try to use Group influence? Basically Advertising is the part of the Marketing. We can define advertising as any paid form of non- personal presentation and promotion of ideas, goods or services by an identified sponsor. Advertising is used in order to stimulate a response from the target audience. Advertising the products or services in this global environment became the primary thing now a day’s for marketers, without adverts no one knows about the products, but comparatively the cost of spending the organizations on advertising is increases over the years with amazing figures. ‘This much capital spending on advertising is to increase the sales of the products basically, to deepen the brand position, to improve the brand position in the market, it’s easier to release new product on the same brand it will lead to brand stretch, it will stop the consumers by purchasing the un-useful products, and the advertisers try to shift attitude by using advertisement’.

Here our question is ‘how do advertisers try to use group influence?’ The development of adverts will basically depends on target audience or target groups, “However there may be global product but there is no global people” (Mooij, 1998), depends on this quote we can say advertisers try to develop campaigns or adverts related to the local targeted people. To increase the sales or deepen their brand advertisers will analyze the targeted group people primarily to know about their values and importance’s, after careful considerations and analysis these marketers will use the group influence by targeting some specific referent groups. For example, considering Formal groups: these groups are normally large and organizations that has a recognized structure that is regular meeting between the individuals. “Marketers tend to have more control over their influencing of formal groups because they are more easily identifiable and accessible” (Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard and Hogg, 2006), these groups are activity-specific and thus are in high in comparative influence. By targeting corporate groups advertisers will get the direct benefits from the consumers. Coming to the non formal groups such as, group of friends and neighbors are smaller in groups but they will influence highly. For example: “Common man or slice of life depictions, which highlight ‘real’ people, are most realistic and thus more credible than celebrities or superstars”. While most of the people admire perfect people, it can be not suitable to compare themselves with them and their actually using the product may seem improbable. By including people who are successful but not perfect, consumer’s identification with them in often enhanced. This concept has been successfully used in the ‘Dewar’s Profiles’, a series of ads describing the lifestyles of non-celebrity high achievers who happen to drink Dewar’s Scotch whisky, this strategy has been become popular, the advert hit the so many people through the non formal groups. This ad will lead informational influence among the people, this information widely spread through the non formal groups and it became popular. An individual or referent group influences the other groups that are all remaining groups will have the indirect influence on them because of this advert. By targeting some sort of reference groups will influence and affect the some individuals also (Kotler, Wong, Saunders and Armstrong, 2005).


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