In Chapter 6 (Learning) we discussed the role of motivation in learning, remembering and forgetting. We saw that people might be motivated, unconsciously, to forget a certain brand name if it was associated in their mind with an unpleasant experience. We also saw that it is more usual for people to be motivated to remember information and that this is important for successful learning.
In Chapter 5 (Personality) we discussed the work of Ernest Dichter, the founder of ‘motivational research’, a system of interpreting consumer behaviour in terms of Freudian psychoanalysis. This system, which places great importance on a consumer’s unconscious reasons for buying a product, will be explored in greater detail in this chapter.
In Chapter 2 (Market Segmentation) we noted the importance of individual motivation in the way an individual consumer structures his or her lifestyle, and how market researchers have developed psychological techniques to tap into this process.
We will also encounter the concept of motivation later in this book, perhaps most notably in Chapter 13 (Attitudes). It is in fact difficult to overstate its importance for a psychological approach to understanding the consumer.
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