Skip to main content

Arvind Kejriwal, negative emotions, & consumer motivation

There's a video of Arvind Kejriwal getting slapped to the sound of music going around on social media. People have shared the video with much mirth, adding their nasty comments. I for one am disturbed. Its one thing to revel in another man's misfortune, its another to pass it around so others can join in the sickening revelry. At home we do our best to step in and ensure there's no exulting in anyone's misfortune. This is especially important for us to teach our kids. Its commonplace to see simple mishaps when kids play, like someone slipping and falling and so on. If Jaden joins in the laughter that follows, we remind him later of his rude behavior. We point to him though he may be prompted to laugh at such times, he must curb it, step up and if possible help.

Much of the response to the Kejriwal musical slap video comes from deep rooted hatred and disdain some people have for him. Now that's worrying. You can disagree vehemently with people's point of view, but that's no reason to wait for and revel in their downfall. Negative emotions and the behavior they provoke can be dangerous to the extent it eats up people from the inside. Note, it isn't wise to characterize all negative emotions as dangerous, as they have their positives too. There's research evidence that show negative emotions can be the key to one's well being. Tapping into negative emotions to spur people on is where marketing steps in. The portrayal of 'envy' in advertising for example, is aimed at motivating consumers to buy products and services the successful patronize. Remember Onida? However, its wise to note envy can either be 'benign' or 'malicious', and the response behavior prompted by either can play out differently. Every marketer worth his salt keys into the target consumer's emotions to build what is termed as 'emotional value'. Why marketeers, even on social media there's evidence to show for example, emotive headlines see lager number of 'shares'.

Its easy to see emotions are behavioral drivers. In business, as in politics. As for Kejrwal and the disdain he spawns, I fervently hope such anger doesn't take the dangerous road. I hope the people who hate him use it constructively to work towards upping their act in serving citizens better that the current Chief Minister of Delhi. That is when emotions will contribute. To a better society. 


Popular posts from this blog

Situational Involvement of Consumers

There are two types of involvement that consumers have with products and services, Situational and Enduring. Situational involvement as the term suggests, occurs only in specificsituations whereas Enduring involvement is continuous and is more permanent in nature.

Decisions to buy umbrellas in India are driven by the onset of Indian monsoon. Monsoon rains arrived in India over the South Andaman Sea on May 10 and over the Kerala coast on May 28, three days ahead of schedule. But then, after a few days of rain, South India is witnessing a spate of dry weather. Temperatures are soaring in the north of India. The Umbrella companies in the state of Kerala are wishing for the skies to open up. So is the farming community and manufacturers of rural consumer products whose product sales depend totally on the farming community. The Met. department has deemed this dry spell as 'not unusual'.

India's monsoon rains have been static over the southern coast since last Tuesday because of a…

Prior Hypothesis Bias

Prior Hypothesis bias refers to the fact that decision makers who have strong prior beliefs about the relationship between two variables tend to make decisions on the basis of those beliefs, even when presented with the evidence that their beliefs are wrong. Moreover, they tend to use and seek information that is consistent with their prior beliefs, while ignoring information that contradicts these beliefs.

From a strategic perspective, a CEO who has a strong prior belief that a certain strategy makes sense might continue to pursue that strategy, despite evidence that it is inappropriate or failing.

Ref : Strategic Management : An Integrated Approach, 6e, Charles W L Hill, Gareth R Jones

Consumer Spending

Carpe Diem Blog: From Visual Economics, a graphical representation appears above (click to enlarge) of Consumer Expenditures in 2007, using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Note that total spending on food ($6,133), clothing ($1,881) and housing ($16,920) represented 50% of consumer expenditures and 30% of income before taxes in 2007. In 1997 by comparison, 51.1% of consumer expenditures were spent on food, clothing and housing, and 44.6% of income before taxes was spent on food, clothing and housing (data here).