Importance of family and friends as Consumer influencers

Both family and friends influence people in their roles as consumers.

'Friendship Groups' are part of specific consumer reference groups, generally termed, informal groups because they are usually unstructured and lack specific authority levels. Previously thought of as the weaker of influencers, today, in India, they seem to exert influences stronger than the ones exerted by the family ( Ref : Namrata Joshi's article in the Outlook ).

There is an aspect of childhood socialisation that is relevant to the study of consumer behaviour , termed, consumer socialisation, which is defined as the process by which children acquire the skills, knowledge, attitudes and experiences necessary to function as consumers.

Influence of Family on a Young person - ( Basic Values )
  • Moral /Religious principles
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Dress / Grooming standards
  • Manners and speech
  • Educational motivation
  • Occupational / Career goals
  • Consumer behaviour norms

Influence of Friends on Young person - ( Expressive Attitudes )

  • Style
  • Fashion
  • Fads
  • 'In/Out'
  • Acceptable Consumer Behaviour

Ref : Reference Groups and Family Influences; Consumer Behaviour, 8e, Leon G Schiffman, LL

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