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Consumer Behaviour Case Study Analysis On The Importance Of Spokes-Character


Task: The Case Study Analysis is an individual assessment task that will assess students’ ability to analyse a case, marshal their thoughts and ideas and communicate them via report. The aim of Case Study Analysis is to apply theory to solve the case and answer the case questions. Students must identify at least TWO (2) consumer behaviour theories/concepts which directly relate to the issues discussed in the case study. Students will be assessed on the identification of relevant consumer behaviour theory/concepts that they have selected; depth of their understanding and research/analysis skills in applying these theories/concepts to the case study and inclusion of other examples to support their assertions. Selection of specific case will be discussed in the lecture.


1. Introduction
Marketers make use of spokes-character to highlight a brand name and enhance recall value. In the current consumer behaviour case study analysis of Dr. Letheren, the importance of various spokes-character and the influence that they had on consumers have been discussed. With advent of globalisation and technological trends several marketers in companies are creating high levels of engagement with their consumers using spokes-character. It has the capability to increase memory and recall value from short-term memory into long-term memory (Liao, Liu, Pi and Liu, 2011, p 5360). The marketers make use of several available consumer behaviour models to create an impact on the consumers. In the current case analysis the role of commercial spokes-person is evaluated using relevant examples.

2. Evaluation of Ronald McDonald’s spokes-character
Modern brands have been drastically changed by the use of various dynamic symbols for the purpose to create multidimensional meanings related of products in order to target consumer attitudes and make short term as well as long term memory (Cheyne, Dorfman, Bukofzer and Harris, 2013, p 570). The use of spokes-character is usually applied for promoting products or services as depicted by Ronald McDonald. The use of this spokes-character in brands in marketing campaigns and advertising may change the preferences of consumer brands. Such phenomenon is illustrated in behavioral learning theory and the personality traits theories. Ronald McDonald’s presentation is an example of a modern presentation of Pavlov's classic climate theory. The theory of classical conditioning refers to learning by means of repetitions. It can be referred to as the spontaneous response to a situation in particular. This theory connects stimuli paring it with behaviour. As in case of Ronald McDonald depicts in the television advertising as a happy character who works with McDonald's. This gradual exposure shows the formation of a strong brand and a positive brand to create a long memory society even when the consumer is not carefully paying attention. This has capability to generate higher sales (Shuja, Ali, Anjum and Rahim, 2018, p 42).

This advertisement mentioned in this consumer behaviour case study is a case of classic conditioning that has capability to create a greater sense of sales, brands. For example Coca-Cola’s slogan, “Taste the Feeling” (2016) was heavily featured in every cricket matches and all other events in Australia. Market share of Coca-Cola rose straight as consumer started associating with the brand. Ronald McDonald presented McDonald's visual cues that depict fun and happiness being the key characteristics of the spokes-character’s personality. In classical conditioning advertisement and promotion, the spokes-character tries to implicate behavioral learning association with the given brand (Chang, 2014, p 500). Even when consumer does not pay attention or is of the age to grasp understanding such behavioral association is built in long-term memory. Another case of classical conditioning is when Kellogg’s cornflakes are shown consumed during breakfast. The marketers make use of several available consumer behaviour models to create an impact on the consumers. This is a typical case of classical conditioning where consumers are forced to adapt behaviour patterns of breakfast with Kellogg’s cereals.

3. Evaluating nostalgia appeal’s effectiveness in consumer behaviour case study
Over the years, marketers in companies have created a number of unique and unforgettable spokes-character. A famous personality that has influenced my childhood is glove puppets from Hamley’s. It has a significant influence and strong connection, mainly because of its child-centered appearance, and is related to the emotional level of children humor and vibrant colors. Another application of these symptoms is to induce a nostalgic reaction and have a cognitive learning impact at early ages. Cognitive learning theory is based on understanding ways that internal and external factors impact the mental process for producing learning amongst individuals. In normal conditions when cognitive processes are functioning, then storing and acquisition of knowledge takes place, in other cases learning is generally delayed (Ashby and Valentin, 2017, p 160). The process of cognitive learning includes categorizing, generalization of information and observing from the environment around us.

Marketers and advertisers try to respond to memories of nostalgia to target consumers. Visual guides such as spokes-characters act as tools of input for creating memory for the purpose of attitudes and brand information, especially amongst children and for building trust. The characters used in spokes-character acts as external forces impacting the formation of memory, as explained in the theory of cognitive learning. At an early age, consumers are influenced from characters such as to promote children's products. These characters are encrypted and remains in their minds so that generations can survive, and later in life can cause nostalgia through advertising and marketing campaigns. They are memories of happiness; nostalgia and trust are building up over a period to change short term memories into long term memories (Smits and Vandebosch, 2012, p 380). If spokes-characters have experience with their product with associated nostalgic memories, hence they have capabilities to create greater consumer confidence and remain relevant to consumers. With advent of globalisation and technological trends several marketers in companies are creating high levels of engagement with their consumers using spokes-character. Now there is available a number of technologically aided spokes-characters for generating greater brand recognition.

Consumer involvement theory states that nostalgia has capability to influence consumer purchasing decisions. This is important because a brand and related product create a sense of stability that the consumer perceives. Brands considers nostalgic are perceived by consumers as real, invariant and socially conscious elements (Hémar-Nicolas and Gollety, 2012, p 25). As Rafferty’s Garden is a brand in baby food that creates nostalgia and builds a sense of trusts. Brands that can build trust and establish a sense of connection is able to sell more and have greater share of the market as against brands that do not.

Companies in their marketing endeavors aims to create manifestations that can create nostalgia (Kyung, Kwon and Sung, 2010). The brand awareness developed in such a manner that child has a positive association and feeling of nostalgia. A brand creates an attachment with their established marketing brand awareness camping, which leads to its success. Marketers makes use of cognitive theory of learning such that children can develop positive learning association with the brand and also applies participation theory for the brand in a successful manner. Combining of participation theory and theory of cognitive learning in this consumer behaviour case study, a brand is able create a sense of nostalgia which remains in the memory of the child even when he /she grows up.

4. Role of Semantic meaning in advertising
Marketing emphasizes the use of semantics along with semiotics. Semantics examines the relationship and importance of cues, signs along with their meanings. Semiotics incorporates semantics and examines their appearance and displays signs and symbols in social life. Brands have changed to place symbols on certain meanings that are often marked in aspects of life. The goal of semantic advertising is therefore to optimize advertising in such a way that symbols is exposed to the relevant and personalized advertisement (Kinney and Ireland, 2015, p 140). Thus, marketers try and develop meanings from semantics such that consumer can associate it with their lives and find meanings.

Semantic is a study of the meaning behind the word and phrase. The study of semantics focuses on how words are interconnected and how the listener influences the message. Advertisers who use tagging in their messages need to know how the audience interprets slogans, images and so on. With the advent of online search engines, marketers can also use tagging to place relevant advertisements in a user's search results. Although prior technology relied on particular words for ad placement, semantic advertising also meant the meaning of those words.

Semantic advertising is used in digital marketing tremendously. Semantic reports are derived from the content of online advertising pages. Marketing methods for businesses such as Facebook can create ads for customers based on goals and incentives that reflect the intentions, needs, and characteristics of consumer choice. Semantically processed advertising enhances consumer awareness and engagement where individuals find value in a targeted marketing effort. Semantic ads are marketed with aims to motivate consumers towards certain purchase decision (Chiu and Lin, 2012, p 2). Another example of how Trip Advisor uses online advertising is provided by Trip Advisor for other search engines. If a company wants to use tagging technology, then placing search ads on top search engines is what pays the most for being in the top search engines. Trip Advisor customizes customer search preference to show best deals on hotels available for that particular area.

The importance of search techniques improves the accuracy and meaning of search results by interpreting the exact meaning of the audience's thoughts and phrases. For example, a viewer looking for Dodge Charger information will encounter advertisements for parts or mechanics for that car, but not advertisements for the San Diego Cowboy football team.

5. Conclusion
To conclude the above analysis of consumer behaviour case study it can be said that spokes-character has a crucial role to play in marketing concepts. It carries tremendous potentially in creating long term memories and impact on the consumer. With contemporary methods of advertisement and promotion consumer engagement has further increased and companies are now making use of various spokes-characters and even gaming platform to create brand identity and loyalty. These factors assist in developing greater association of consumers with the given brand. It also possesses capabilities to develop greater brand equity, brand recognition and brand recall value in turn generates sales for the company.

6. Reference List

Ashby, FG and Valentin, VV, 2017, Multiple systems of perceptual category learning: Theory and cognitive tests. In Handbook of categorization in cognitive science (pp. 157-188). Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-08-101107-2.00007-5

Chang, EC, 2014, Influences of the spokes-character on brand equity antecedents. Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics26(3), pp.494-515. doi: 10.1108/APJML-02-2013-0030

Cheyne, AD, Dorfman, L, Bukofzer, E and Harris, JL, 2013, Marketing sugary cereals to children in the digital age: a content analysis of 17 child-targeted websites. Journal of health communication18(5), pp.563-582. doi: 10.1080/10810730.2012.743622

Chiu, YK and Lin, CY, 2012, consumer behaviour case study The Influence of Spokes-Characters on Consumer Patronage Intention. Asia Pacific Management Review17(4), viewed from

Hémar-Nicolas, V and Gollety, M, 2012, Using brand character when targeting children: what for? An exploration of managers' and children's viewpoints. Young Consumers13(1), pp.20-29. doi: 10.1108/17473611211203911

Kinney, L and Ireland, J, 2015, Brand spokes-characters as Twitter marketing tools. Journal of Interactive Advertising15(2), pp.135-150. doi: 10.1080/15252019.2015.1101357

Kyung, H, Kwon, O and Sung, Y, 2010, The effects of spokes-characters' personalities of food products on source credibility. Journal of Food Products Marketing17(1), pp.65-78. doi: 10.1080/10454446.2011.532402

Liao, HL, Liu, SH, Pi, SM and Liu, YC, 2011, Talk to me: A preliminary study of the effect of interaction with a spokes-character. African Journal of Business Management5(13), pp.5356-5364, viewed from

Shuja, K, Ali, M, Anjum, MM and Rahim, A, 2018, consumer behaviour case study  Effectiveness of Animated Spokes-Character in Advertising Targeted to Kids. Journal of Marketing Management and Consumer Behavior2(2), pp.31-47.

Smits, T and Vandebosch, H, 2012, Endorsing children’s appetite for healthy foods: Celebrity versus non-celebrity spokes-characters. Communications37(4), pp.371-391, doi: 10.1515/commun-2012-0021


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