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Means-End Theory

Means-End Theory

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Means-End Theory

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  1. A Research Stream Means-End Theory

  2. What is Means-End Theory? An Introduction

  3. Means-End Theory • Gutman (1982) • Goal is to find the relationship among three levels of meaning that are associated with a product as related to the consumer. • Each level becomes more abstract. • Based on a means-end chain which “…is focused on the linkages between where a person wants to be (end-state) and the means chosen to get there.”

  4. Means-End Conceptual Model Attribute Consequence Personal Value

  5. Means-End Chain Model Means-End Chain Matrices Inputs Outputs Values Situations Situations Value Level Distinctions Consequences Consequences Product Chosen Products Considered Relevant Consequences Consequence Level Distinctions Hierarchy of Grouping Level Distinctions Relevant Consequences Grouping Level Distinctions Products Products Grouping Level Distinctions

  6. Laddering • Reynolds and Gutman (1988) • Involves in-depth interviewing • Goal is to start at low-level distinctions and continue probing until most abstract level is discovered

  7. Laddering Example source: Klenosky, 2002 FIGURE 1 REPRESENTATIVE SPRING BREAK LADDERS AND CODING ASSIGNMENTS (IN PARENTHESES) Has nice beaches (attribute: beaches) I can get some sun (consequence: get sun/tan) I look better/healthier (consequence: look good/better) I feel better about myself (value: self-esteem) Known for great parties (A: party atmosphere) Meet people (C: socialize/meet people) Meet girls (C: socialize/meet people) Go on dates (C: date more) Enjoy myself (V: fun and excitement) I’ve never been there (A: new/unique environment) It would be a new experience (C: new/novel experience) To get some excitement (V: excitement) Neat area, a different culture (A: historic/cultural attractions) Can learn about how others live (C: learn more) Broadens my horizons (V: accomplishment) It has a warm climate (A: warm climate) I could enjoy being outside (C: enjoy nature) It’s relaxing (C: rest/relax) Get recharged (C: get refreshed/renewed) So I can get things done when I get back (C: be more productive) So I can graduate and do something with my life! (V: accomplishment)

  8. Hierarchical Value Mapssource: Klenosky, 2002 • Concept was also developed by Gutman and Reynolds in 1988 • Network diagram used to characterize meanings associated with the three levels of distinction

  9. Foundations of Means-End The principles which it is based

  10. Values Orientation for Means-End Chains • Rokeach (1968, 1973) • “A value is an enduring belief that a specific mode of conduct or end-state of existance is personally or socially preferable to an opposite or converse mode of conduct or end-state of existence.” • Defines two types of values • Terminal – preferred end-states of existence (happiness, security, accomplishment, etc) • Instrumental – related to modes of behavior (honest, courageous, broad-minded, etc)

  11. Centrality of Beliefs • Vinson, Scott, and Lamont (1977) • Values are defined as “centrally held cognitive elements that stimulate motivation for behavioral response” • They exist in an interconnected hierarchical structure in which global values are related and connected to generalized consumption-related values, which are, in turn, similarly associated with product attributes”

  12. Organization of the Consumer’s Value-Attitude System Vinson, Scott, and Lamont (1977) - continued Individual’s Belief System Global Values Domain-Specific Values Evaluations of Product Attributes More Centrally Held Less Centrally Held External Environment of the Individual Sociocultural, Economic, and Familial Influence

  13. Howard’s Means-End Chain Model • Howard (1977) • Hierarchical Evaluative Structure

  14. The Grey Benefit Chain • Young and Feigin (1975) • “Benefit chain analysis as a method for linking emotional or psychological benefits to product claims or product attributes.” – Gutman, 1982 Hair Spray that holds and leaves hair soft Leaves hair easier to manage I don’t need to spend so much time on hair Leaves me free to do other things I want to do

  15. Advances to the Basic Theory

  16. MECCAS Model

  17. MECCAS Model Source: Reynolds and Gutman, 1984

  18. MECCAS Model Source: Reynolds and Gutman, 1984

  19. MECCAS Model Source: Reynolds and Gutman, 1984

  20. Means-End Chains as Goals Hierarchies What goals does the consumer consider when choosing a product? A B A C? A D? Goals are what we want; Values are why we want them. Source: Gutman, 1997

  21. Linkages Between Consumer Choices in a Social Context and the Consumer’s Values Connecting Attributes of the Choices to Consequences and Values Connecting Product Choices to Attributes of the Choices Connecting Consumption Occasion to Product Choices Source: Manyiwa and Crawford, 2001

  22. Advancing Mean-End Chains • Incorporating Heider’s Balance Theory and Fournier’s Consumer-Brand Relationship Typology • Heider – States of psychological imbalance may occur in consumers’ minds among linkages retrieved automatically for connections • Fournier’s – Alternative relationships of consumer-brands (e.g. casual friendships, marriages, enmities, etc.) become relevant • Therefore, specific buying and consumption situations need to be assessed Source: Woodside, 2004

  23. Advancing Mean-End Chains Source: Woodside, 2004

  24. Advancing Mean-End Chains Source: Woodside, 2004

  25. Means-End Logic Deduction Source: Chin-Feng et al., 2006

  26. Means-End Logic Deduction - Mouthwash • 9 Value Variables • 11 Benefit Variables • 13 Attribute Variables • 80% Level of Explanation • Results in Cutoff Level of 18% for Variables Source: Chin-Feng et al., 2006

  27. Future Research on Means-End or Practical Applications of the Theory • What are your ideas for Future Research or ways to improve this theory? • What are your thoughts for the practical application of this model?

  28. Means-End Theory – A Research Stream Perspective Thank You!