Motivation is the driving force within individuals that impels them to action. This driving force is produced by a state of uncomfortable tension, which exists as a result of an unfulfilled need. All individuals have needs, wants and desires. Thus, motives have a role in consumer behaviour.
Although marketing research plays its important role for business firms to solve their marketing problems, it is confined to only the ‘what’ aspect of the problem and does not provide the answer to the ‘why’ aspect of the problem. This answer is found in motivation research.
The term Motivation research includes all type of research into human motives, is generally used to refer to qualitative research design to uncover the consumers sub-conscience or hidden motivations.
Characteristics of Motivation Research
The meaning of motivation research may be understood by the following main characteristics of motivation research.
- Motivation research is concerned with human motives.
- It is qualitative research, so it is very difficult to generalize the findings.
- Motivation research operates on the premise that consumers are not always aware of the reasons for their actions.
- Motivation research attempts to discover, underlying feelings, attitudes and emotions concerning product, service or brand use.
- Motivation research is designed to uncover consumers of the subconscious or hidden motivation.
- Marketing research is focused on what consumers do, but the focus of motivation research is on why they do it.
- Motivation research is an interdisciplinary science, psychologists, sociologists and anthropologist have made valuable contributions to the understanding of why people act as they do in the Marketplace.
Needs of Motivation Research
Limitations of marketing research have led to the development of motivation research.
Marketing research may provide quantitative data and information with regard to various aspects of marketing operations but cannot furnish qualitative data concerned with its consumers.
The needs for motivation research may be discussed under the following points.
1. To Understand Human Motives
From the point of view of motives, human behaviour may be grouped into three categories.
At the first level, consumers recognise and are quite willing to talk about their motives for buying a specific product.
At a second level, they are aware of their reasons for buying, but will not admit them to others.
At the three Third Level, there are consumers who themselves do not know the real factors motivating their buying actions.
It is easier to identify the motives falling in the first and second category, but the most difficult motives to uncover are those of the third category. Consumers in the first category reveal their feelings, views and opinions openly.
The motives at the second and third levels may be identified only with the help of suitable techniques of motivation research.
2. Psychoanalytical Understanding of Consumers Personality
The psychoanalytic school of thought, there are three parts of the mind – the ID, Ego and Superego. The ID houses the basic instinctive drives, many of them may be similar to animals.
The superego is our conscience, accepting moral standards and directing the instinctive motives into acceptable channels, to avoid feelings of guilt and shame.
The id and super ego sometimes may be in conflict. The ego is the conscience, rational control centre which maintains a balance between the uninhibited motives of the id and the socially oriented constraining superego.
Study of ego is very important for marketing companies because it represents the practical side of human behaviour.
Techniques of motivation research may provide great assistance in this regard.
3. Study of the Unconscious Mind of Consumers
Studies have shown that the unconscious mind may understand and respond to meaning and form of emotional responses and guide most actions largely independent of conscious awareness.
The findings imply that despite the subjective belief of being in conscious control of their feelings, thoughts, decisions and actions, people are directed for more than they realise by their subconscious and unconscious mind.
With the help of motivation research, marketing companies may study the unconscious mind of consumers and anticipate prospective behaviour up to some extent.
4. Development of New Products
Motivation research may provide a basic orientation for new product categories.
With the help of motivation research, hidden needs of consumers may be identified and suitable products may be developed by the marketing company for this purpose.
5. Effective Promotional Campaign
On the basis of the findings of motivation research, the marketing company may design a good copy of advertisement consistent with appropriate appeals to motivate the consumers to purchase products.
Motivation research enables the marketing company to explore and identify the ideas, opinion, reactions of consumers regarding advertising copy and costly errors may be avoided at an early stage.
Thus, now you know the Needs and Characteristics of Motivation Research.