Strategies for changing attitudes and intentions

Some strategies for influencing changes in consumers’ attitudes toward certain behaviors have already been identified. Other strategies exist, however, that accomplish changes in behavioral intentions without directly affecting attitudes. Because Fishbein’s behavioral model links these concepts so closely tighter, the various change strategies are discussed collectively below. Although many factors can influence the marketer’s choice among three alternatives one fundamental consideration should be the degree of involvement that consumers are experiencing with products.

Low Involvement Strategies

We noted that under low involvement conditions consumers are not likely to make brand choices on the basis of attitudes established through developing clearly formulated beliefs about the product or service. In essence their interest is too low to spend time thinking about products and evaluating them in a rational and deliberate fashion. Given this, it is generally unproductive from marketers to develop communications designed to develop or modify thought intensive pre-purchasebeliefs about their brands among consumers. In the preceding on attitude development we also noted that a consumer’s attitudes seem capable of being changed by a variety of cues that are among the incidental stimuli in the advertisement itself or are part of the situation in which the advertisement is being perceived by the consumer. This seems especially so in low involvement situations. Consequently one potential low involvement strategy may be to change consumers’ attitudes by using peripheral cues to encourage favorable reactions toward advertisements used to promote the brands. Such cues might involve use of pictures color, attractive spokespeople or characters, creative placement of the ad components and music in broadcast ads. Some of these mechanisms will be treated in the last portion of this article. What is important to appreciate her is that the ensuring favorable reactions these mechanisms can generate among consumers toward the advertisement itself would then be expected to become associated with the product being advertised.

The option that remain stress capitalization, a means to transform the situation into characterized by high involvement. Success here would allow use of high involvement attitude change methods to influence brand choices. How can this increase in pre-purchase involvement be accomplished? A list of options suggested by various researchers has been compiled.

Link the product or service to an involving issue. Because issues are often more involving than are products this linkage could increase involvement regarding the product. Linking a breakfast cereal to problems of deficient performance among school children who have not had a wholesome breakfast would be one example. The advertisement for Promise represents another example.

Link the product to a presently involving personal situation. On some occasions, a message can be targeted to audiences at the time they are engaged in an activity related to the product. At this time, their interest could be sufficiently high to quality as high involvement. An example might be radio advertisements for a suntan lotion during midday hours of summer weekends.

Develop high involvement advertisements: because consumers’ involvement in a product is low, it does not necessarily mean that they cannot become involved in advertisements for the product. The use of humor, dramatic events, or other methods can create an involving advertisement to which the product could then b e linked.

Change the importance of products benefits. This option is quite difficult to pursue, because it attempts a frontal attack on consumers’ perceptions of product benefits. To illustrate if consumers could be convinced that the fiber content in dried cereal is every important to their health, they might become more involved in their choice of cereal. The brands that possess this attribute are then likely to be the recipient of favorable consumer attitudes.

Reveal or introduce important product characteristics. New attributes can be associated with a product and consumers can also b made aware that some favorable attributes have been product characteristics for along time. These have the potential for increasing involvement levels. The absence of caffeine and sugar or the addition of calcium in a number of soft drinks certainly appears to capture the interest of many consumers because of their implications regarding the health and appearance of the body. Fortification of milk and other foods with vitamins represents another example.