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Consumer Behavior Audit: Proactiv Solutions by Amanda Huigens Essay

A.External influences

1.Are there cultures or subcultures whose value system is particularly consistent (or inconsistent) with the consumption of our product? The overall value system for the western culture, which is the dominant culture in the Unites States, is consistent with the consumption of Proactiv Solutions. The consumption of personal care products and services across different subcultures, such as class, race, and occupation, varies from being fairly equivalent to showing significant discrepancies. However, consumption of these products and services is evident in all subcultures, confirming that they are consistent with each subcultures value systems.

2.Is the product appropriate for male and female consumption? Will ongoing gender-role changes, affect who consumes our product or how it is consumed? Proactiv Solutions is appropriate for both male and female consumption. The current ongoing gender-role is for females to be the main purchasers and consumers of personal care products. This gender-role is constantly changing so that males are now more included in these purchases and the consumption of them. Both males and females currently consume Proactiv Solutions products.

3.Do ethics, social, regional, or religious subcultures have different consumption patterns relevant to our product? Regional and social subcultures have fairly equivalent consumption patterns. Some social subcultures may use different forms of personal care products, such as all natural ingredients or home-made products. They may also use different personal care services, or professional treatment, such as microdermabrasion, acupuncture, or hot rocks therapy. These different products or services may be used simultaneously with Proactiv Solutions depending on consumer want and need preferences.

4.Do various demographic or social-strata groups (age, gender, urban/suburban/rural, occupational, income, education) differ in their consumption of this product? Consumption among regions and among racial groups does not vary significantly. The social-strata groups that do vary in consumption include age, occupation, income class, and education.

According to the US Consumer Expenditure Survey, the consumption of personal care products and services peaks between the ages of 35-54. Any age groups above or below this range consume less, with consumers under 25 years spending less. The only observation that differs from this data is that most of Proactiv Solutions consumers are under 25 years of age, meaning that older consumers may take part in the purchase process.

Education, occupation, and income class social-strata groups go hand-in-hand as far as consumption of personal care products and services go. Consumers that are college graduates (four years or more) spend and average of $805 per consumer unit. Consumers with less than a four year degree only spend and average of $439 per consumer unit. The professional occupation subculture averages $753 spent on personal care products and services per consumer unit. All other occupations spend under $562 per consumer unit. Finally, income classes earning above $100,000 spend on average $868 and above per consumer unit, while lower income classes spend $761 and less.

5.Is this product particularly appropriate for consumers with relatively high (or low) incomes compared to others in their occupational group (ROCI)? Although the consumption patterns may be different for these groups, Proactiv Solutions is appropriate for all income levels and all occupations.

6.Can this product be particularly appropriate for specific roles, such as students or professional women? Although professional men and women may be more likely to consume Proactiv Solutions, this product is appropriate for all roles.

7.Would it be useful to focus on specific adopter categories? By focusing on innovators and early adopters, Proactiv Solutions will be able to develop a client base. These adopter categories tend to influence the other adopter categories, so consumers in these other categories may eventually purchase Proactiv Solutions.

8.Do groups in different stages of the household life cycle have different consumption patterns for this product? Who in the household is involved in the purchase process? Because acne may affect consumers of any age, all consumers may use Proactive Solutions. Younger age groups, especially teens, are more prone to acne, so their consumption patterns are noticeably higher. The influencers, deciders, buyers, and users are typically involved in the purchase process. Sometimes a consumer may be all of these roles, in which case they have complete control in the purchase process. In other cases, such as an unemployed teenager needing to treat acne, the roles may be different. In this example, the teenager would be the influencer and user, while the parents would be the deciders and buyers.

B.Internal influences

1.Can this product satisfy different needs or motives in different people? What needs are involved? What characterizes individuals with differing motives? Yes. Some consumers may use Proactiv Solutions to improve their image, while others are more concerned about the health of their skin. For example, consumers in professional occupations or consumers that are trying to impress a member of the opposite sex may be most concerned about their image. Consumers who want to maintain young and healthy skin would be most concerned about taking care of their skin.

2.Is this product uniquely suited for particular personality types? Self-concepts? Proactiv Solutions is suited for all personality types (using Myers-Briggs personality types and Kiersey Temperaments). However, some personalities, such as Artisians, may be more likely to pay attention to their skin care. Consumers who take interest in the health or look of their skin or who believe that maintaining healthy skin is vital to their self-concept may be more likely to consume this product.

3.What emotions, if any, are affected by the purchase and/or consumption of this product? Knowing that they are improving the look and feel of their skin by using Proactiv Solutions makes consumers happy. This may also boost their self-esteem and confidence.

4.Is this product uniquely suited for one or more distinct lifestyles? Proactiv is suited best for consumers that allow for the inclusion of a routine skin care regimen. In order for Proactiv to work effectively, consistent use of the product is vital.

5.Do different groups have different attitudes about an ideal version of our product? Yes. Some consumers would prefer to see Proactiv Solutions offered in stores so that they can physically see it and/or buy it without the hassle of ordering it and having strings attached. (When you order Proactiv Solutions, your order is automatically sent to you on a regular basis.) Other consumers may not trust the quality of Proactiv Solutions because it is marketed using infomercials.

C.Situational influences

1.Can this product be appropriate for specific types of situations instead of (or in additional to) specific types of people? Yes. Consumers who have a doctor recommendation to seek treatment for their skin in order to improve its condition or relieve pain may have more reason to use Proactiv Solutions.

D.Decision process influences

1.Do different individuals use different evaluative criteria in selecting the product? Yes. Consumers, such as unemployed teenagers, who do not have to pay for the product are going to be more concerned about the outcome, the brand image, and the affects of being associated with that product. Consumers who are a part of the purchase process, in particular the payment part, are going to be concerned mainly with the price, but also with the brand image and the outcome.

2.Do potential customers differ in their loyalty to existing products/brands? Some consumers are very loyal to the brands that they currently use. Others may be open to trying something new. Reasons for being loyal include satisfaction with price, quality, and results. Consumers who are willing to try new products may have been unhappy with previous products or else they just might like to use the newest innovations in personal care products.

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