In today’s ever more competitive business environment, it is increasingly important to be able to understand the thinking of consumers when they make purchases. Whether it be an impulse buy, or something that is on sale, attractively packaged or just conveniently available, discovering the reasons why consumers make the choices they do is the primary goal of consumer psychology.
Uses of Consumer Psychology
Studying consumers and the way they behave can garner information that can help businesses better tailor their products and services to enhance the possibility that consumers will buy them. While no sales technique is universally effective, small details like shelf placement, packaging and what type of advertising is presented can make important differences in whether or not a consumer decides to make a purchase.
Requirements to Become a Consumer Psychologist
Anyone wishing to enter the field of Consumer Psychology should first seek an undergraduate degree in psychology. Psych courses should also be supplemented with courses in statistics, marketing, economics and general business courses. While it is possible to enter the field with only a Bachelor’s Degree, it is often wiser to get a graduate degree as well in order to be more competitive in the job market. To gain insight into the workday realities of the field, study the websites of leading firms that specialize in Consumer Psychology, such as http://www.kantarmedia.co.uk who offer services such as Kantar Media monitoring.
Purpose of Consumer Psychology
The goal of a consumer psychologist is to get inside the mind the of the consumer when they shop, such as online insights into why people click on some advertisements but not others. This may involve conducting focus groups and surveys, or even observing customers as they shop. Once sufficient information is obtained, a report is written with conclusions showing the results and designed to help the seller of a particula product or service attract more customers.
Where a Consumer Psychologist Works
Most consumer psychologists work full time for marketing or advertising firms, although it is not uncommon for particularly talented consumer psychologists to work as self-employed consultants. Others work exclusively for one company or corporation as part of their internal marketing and advertising staffs. Some jobs in Consumer Psychology can also be found in academia and government agencies. A typical consumer psychologist can expect to make between $85,000 and $90,000 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.