A world of self-staging and identity A study of the consumer’s creation of value factors in products and brands Consumption has always been a fundamental part of a well-functioning society and exists around the world. We all consume and we each have our preferred products and brands we seek when we need to renew our belongings and possessions. Because of this position towards our preferred products and brands, companies need to offer something more than just a brand or product. It is important that the products are unique and offer something extraordinary, and thereby eventually end up among the consumers’ belongings. These extraordinary qualities causes the consumers to become attached to their belongings and these will in some way tell something about who the consumers are. The identity of the human being is created based on social mechanisms and values that are culturally determined. Consumption and values are inextricably linked. Every time we buy something new, we send signals to the outside world about our values and priorities. This means that all products and brands have associated some social and cultural meanings to them, which have common languages and symbols that are used to signal something specific to the outside world about who we are. In order to gain an understanding of how products and brands can help create the identity and self-staging of consumers, an insight in consumer behaviour is needed. To gain this insight a study is made which consist of both primary and secondary empirical knowledge and data. The secondary data is derived by existing literature of theories concerning identity, self-staging and dramaturgy and will form the framework for the thesis. The primary data consist of observations and interviews formed on a number of consumers. These will provide a first-hand insight in the consumers’ behaviour in order to find out what qualities in a product or brand create the values needed in order for the consumer to see it as a part of his or hers identity. Hereafter the results from the primary empirical knowledge and data will be compared to the existing literature in an analysis. The purpose of this is to create a framework for the results and to draw coincidences and discrepancies. The result of this analysis revealed that two main qualities needed to be present in a product and/or brand – a set of practical values and a set of social values. Combined these are called value as experience. Therefore it is important that companies help to create these necessary values in order for consumers to achieve a creation of identity. 2 Due to a delimitation of the subject in the thesis, the result may only state how smartphones can be the mean for creation of identity and self-staging. However it displays an inclination that may very well be the case for other products as well. Therefore the thesis contributes to a wide understanding of how consumers stage themselves through products and brands and pave the way for further research.
|Educations||MA in International Business Communication (Intercultural Marketing), (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||101|