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Understanding consumer decisions using behavioral economics


Zandstra, Elizabeth H; Miyapuram, Krishna P; Tobler, Philippe N (2013). Understanding consumer decisions using behavioral economics. In: Chandrasekhar Pammi, V S; Narayanan, Srinivasan. Decision Making - Neural and Behavioural Approaches. Amsterdam: Elsevier, 197-211.

Abstract

Consumers make many decisions in everyday life involving finances, food, and health. It is known from behavioral economics research that people are often driven by short-term gratification, that is, people tend to choose the immediate, albeit smaller reward. But choosing the delayed reward, that is, delaying the gratification, can actually be beneficial. How can we motivate consumers to resist the "now" and invest in their future, leading to sustainable or healthy habits? We review recent developments from behavioral and neuroimaging studies that are relevant for understanding consumer decisions. Further, we present results from our field research that examined whether we can increase the perceived value of a (delayed) environmental benefit using tailored communication, that is, change the way it is framed. More specifically, we investigated whether we can boost the value of an abstract, long-term "green" claim of a product by expressing it as a concrete, short-term benefit. This is a new application area for behavioral economics.

Consumers make many decisions in everyday life involving finances, food, and health. It is known from behavioral economics research that people are often driven by short-term gratification, that is, people tend to choose the immediate, albeit smaller reward. But choosing the delayed reward, that is, delaying the gratification, can actually be beneficial. How can we motivate consumers to resist the "now" and invest in their future, leading to sustainable or healthy habits? We review recent developments from behavioral and neuroimaging studies that are relevant for understanding consumer decisions. Further, we present results from our field research that examined whether we can increase the perceived value of a (delayed) environmental benefit using tailored communication, that is, change the way it is framed. More specifically, we investigated whether we can boost the value of an abstract, long-term "green" claim of a product by expressing it as a concrete, short-term benefit. This is a new application area for behavioral economics.

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4 citations in Web of Science®
5 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Book Section, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
08 University Research Priority Programs > Foundations of Human Social Behavior: Altruism and Egoism
Dewey Decimal Classification:170 Ethics
330 Economics
Language:English
Date:2013
Deposited On:27 Feb 2013 14:24
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 16:28
Publisher:Elsevier
Series Name:Progress in Brain Research
Number:202
ISSN:0079-6123
ISBN:978-0-444-62604-2
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-444-62604-2.00012-5
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-73002

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