This month, we are diving a bit more into some of the psychological factors that play a part in consumer behavior - specifically focusing on how people learn.
Last month we dug into how perceptions can affect a consumers behavior. This month, we take a look at how what we have learned can influence our decisions.
Everyone learns through experiences. Everything from figuring out how to walk to deciding which Medicare Part D plan to pick, leads to learning.
The learning process is broken into 4 sections; drive, cues, responses, and reinforcement.
Drive is the strong internal need that calls you to take action. This drive is acted on when various cues direct the person on when, where and how to respond to their drives. The response occurs when the cues become strong enough to influence the person to act. Finally, if the experience is positive, their response will be reinforced - leading them to stick with what they know and have good experiences with.
As an example: I have a drive to get a flu shot this year. Like most people I put it off until I finally see/hear/experience something that pushes me into action (like see an ad promoting flu shots at a local pharmacy/hear a radio script about importance of getting your shot/talk with a friend who goes to the pharmacy). Finally, I went into the pharmacy and get my flu shot. Through this experience, I may have learned:
A) I can get my flu shot at this pharmacy
B) The wait was short/no wait at all
C) The staff were friendly and inviting
D) I didn't have to go to the doctor's office
All of these facts have caused my response to be reinforced, and the next time I need a flu shot or a new medication, the probability I choose the same pharmacy will be greater.