In the 21st century technological environment has witnessed a rampant growth due to its dynamic nature. This has also been witnessed in the marketing function of the business since some of the businesses are based wholly on technology. One such area is the development and marketing of the video games. This has been so due to the advancement of e-commerce which has witnessed a number of players leading to the increase in the value of the online games. People have also changed their way of live and there has been a general acceptance of the video games as a form of entertainment, (information and management, 2004).
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Video game refers to an electronic game that involves interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a video device. Various platforms are used to play the video games and they include the personal computers and the video game consoles. They range from the computers to the small handheld devices.The input devices is used to manipulate the video games is called the game controller and they vary across the platform such as the joystick, the key board and the mouse. They also use sound reproduction devices such as the speakers, and the headphones video games.
In the marketing of the video games the marketer needs to understand the diversity of the consumers and their needs as individuals. Marketing is an area of great concern for the survival of business no matter the sector of its operation. In considering the individual customer, the marketer should emphasis issues such as the following:
Need and the motivation of the customer
The various consumers show different shopping patterns.Motivation refers to the drives ,the urges , wishes or the desires that initiate the sequence known as behavior.Motivation leads to a state of disequilibrium and hence the need to improve the situation by triggering a sequence of psychological events directed to the selection of a goal that the individual anticipates will ease the tension. Due to the complexity of the environment in which the current consumer lives, there is a growth in the entertainment industry as a way of releasing tension after the daily cores whereas the environment may not be condusive.The individual customer have an effect in the marketing of the video games due to the fact that he is the one who makes the decision on the good to consume. The video game marketer should ensure that he produces games that are will greatly ease the tension of the consumers and also understand the needs according to the status of the consumer. In making his consumption decision the consumer is aimed at obtaining maximum utility from the goods and services. The games should result into the maximization of the utility of the consumer. The consumer behavior is initiated by the need. The consumer need is what drives him into action. The consumers also affect the marketing in the fact that their needs vary according to different variables such as the age, their technological knowledge, economic and social status. To be able to succeed the marketer should ensure that he is able to segregate the market according to the consumer individual needs. These gaps need to be addressed so as to put in place effective marketing strategies that address the needs of the whole market. The stimulus characteristic is what encourages or discourages the need and the motivation of the consumer.
Personality and self concept
Personality refers to the characteristic patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behavior that make a person unique and remains fairly consistent throughout life, (Personality concept, n.d). Personality has an influence on the type of goods and services that the consumers consume. Personality concept stipulates that certain goods and services only appeal to a given market segment.This shows that in the marketing of video games, the marketer needs to address the various market segment in terms of personality so as to produce games that will appeal to the different personalities in the market. The segmentation could be in terms of annual income , level of education and the employment status.Personalities of a particular nature will also manifest their behavior in their consumption patterns,(consumer self concept n.d).
Perception and attitude
Perception refers to the conscious understanding of something. In the purchasing decision of the consumers, perception of the product being purchased is given a priority. If the consumer perceives the video games to be of high quality and it will bring maximum satisfaction and improves the living situation, then this becomes the basis upon which the consumer will purchase the product on. The producer of the video games should conduct a market study to investigate the perception of the various individuals within the market.This will help in the determination of whether the products perception is either positive or negative.The consumers will bases their judgment with regard to social issues or economic issues. Some of the video games may result into moral degradation and hence they would not make a big sale in the market.Perception helps to determine the customers’ expectation of the products and their resultant attitude towards them.
The consumers will also be concerned of the country from where the games are produced due to the political perceptions. Some consumers would not purchase video games manufactured from certain countries due to their negative perception concerning that country.
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Perception is also influenced by the price of the commodity since the customers are price conscious.If the consumer perceives certain brand of video games to be expensive, then for the company it means that the sales for the video games will be affected.
Inline with the utility concerns, the consumers will definitely seek for high quality products. To cater for this the marketer should ensure that the video games are of high quality since it determines the success of the product. Due to globalization, there has been increase in the level of competition and the consumers have and assortment of various producers to choose their goods from. This is through ensuring that the quality control department ensures that the products are of high standards. The marketer should understand and analyze the relationship between the consumer perception and attitude about the video games and the fulfillment of the desired need. The individual consumer is also concerned about the legality of the video games in the market. If the relationship between the government and the business involved in the production of video games is negative then the consumer will have a negative perception towards them and will often distant himself from these products.
The marketer should ensure he conducts surveys on the perception of the consumer regarding the video games so as to determine the level of consumer satisfaction. Consumer satisfaction leads to a decline of complains from the consumers. The management accountants of the video games companies should contribute to the measurement of the quality of the video games.
Learning and involvement
The consumer learning process refers to the process change in the consumption behavior pattern that is influenced by the reception of information and experience. The video games marketer should understand the fact that consumer learning process is the basis through which consumer motivation to buy or not to buy a particular product or service. They should appreciate the fact that the consumption behavior is a learnt behavior. Learning may occur in situation of high in situations of high involvement (when the consumer has a reason to learn) or low involvement (when the consumer is very poorly or not at all motivated to learn).The marketer should understand the fact that the learning process can be noticeable or unnoticeable. He has the responsibility of ensuring that in either cases he is able to identify the change in behavior of the consumer in terms of the tastes and preferences of the video games so that he can be able to respond to these changes in time.This will also help him in the fact that he will not lose the already acquired market share and he is also in a position to innovate other games that he can effectively market since they meet the market needs. By understanding the learning process, the marketer is in a position to predict the effect of consumer behavioral change with a probability of a higher degree. For the consumer, learning comes from responding to the communications received from the environment. The marketer of the video game thus also is in a position to influence the learning process by ensuring that he provides the necessary information to the market by conducting educative advertising campaigns regarding the video games. The response of the consumer will affect the marketing process in that due to their diversity, some will prefer to use information from other consumers and hence make a repeat of the same. This means that if the information obtained from the original consumer of the video games was not effective, then the potential consumers’ judgment will greatly be affected. The marketer should ensure that he corrects this misinformation for they directly affect the marketing process leading to the decline in the level of sales. He should realize that a consumer’s knowledge leads to a permanent change in their behavior. The logical reasoning of the consumer can be improved by the marketer since the consumers’ behavior is influenced by the new environmental stimuli. This can be possible for the video games marketer through the process of advertisement. Consequently the consumer can change his consumption behavior of the video games products. The individual consumer also affects the learning process in that through the advertising process.The consumer can either be appealed by the various slogans, trade names that the video games producing companies use. These contribute to the learning process of the consumer but unconsciously, (marketing application of the learning process, n.d).
This shows this show that the individual consumer can affect the marketing process by influencing the promotional strategies to be used by the marketer. The marketer should conduct a study to determine the type of promotional strategy that will greatly appeal the consumer. He should also involve the consumer in determining the best advertising media to use. This will ensure that he reaches a large number of customers which will eventually lead to increase in the market share. The marketer should understand the fact that through the promotional activities, learning by the customer is not instant. For the company this means that he has to conduct repetitive promotion about the existence of the video games, thus it is necessary for the marketer to repeat the stimuli is repeated a number of times so as to ensure that it penetrates the market effectively until it stabilizes. Thus the success of the marketing process depends on the receptiveness of the customers and their resulting motivation. The marketer should understand that the promotion strategies are aimed at creating awareness of the video games, demonstrating their relevance, and reminding them of the products benefits.
In conclusion, it is evident that the individual customer has a great influence in the marketing function of any business no matter the sector of operation. The marketer should critically focus on the final consumer as a factor that contributes to the success of the business. This is in terms of the effectiveness of the marketing strategies that are to be implemented.
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- Pulu&Krugman (1986) Marketing application of the learning process, Journal of Marketing, vol 4, no 6, pp 1140.
- Tarek Aly& El Badway (2003), Perception of consumer problems and concerns related to Consumer protection and education. Journal of Marketing, vol 12, p. 56.