PURCHASE FULL WORK -3500

INFLUENCE OF BRAND ASSOCIATION ON THE PURCHASE DECISION OF BUSINESS STUDENTS ON CLOTHING ITEMS IN TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS OF BAYELSA STATE

Vocational Technical Education Project Topics & Materials

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title Page …  …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      i

Approval Page… …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      ii

Certification         …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      iii

Dedication …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      iv

Acknowledgments         …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      v

Table of Contents          …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      vi

Abstract      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      ix

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study        …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      1

Statement of the Problem …   …      …      …      …      …      …      …      8

Purpose of the Study     …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      8

Significance of the Study …    …      …      …      …      …      …      …      9

Research Questions       …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      10

Hypotheses          …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      10

Delimitation of the Study        …      …      …      …      …      …      …      10

CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE

Conceptual Framework …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      12

Brand Associations       …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      12

Customer Benefit           …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      15

Product Attributes         …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      17

Country of Origin or Product Place of Origin      …      …      …      …      18

Price of Product   …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      21

Purchase Decision          …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      22

Influence               …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      24

Business Students          …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      25

Clothing Items      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      26

A Schema             …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      28

Theoretical Framework …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      29

Related Empirical Studies       …      …      …      …      …      …      …      31

Summary of Related Literature         …      …      …      …      …      …      …      34

 

CHAPTER THREE: METHODOLOGY

Design of the Study       …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      36

Area of the Study          …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      36

Population of the Study …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      37

Sample and Sampling Technique      …      …      …      …      …      …      37

Instrument for data Collection          …      …      …      …      …      …      …      38

Validation of the Instrument   …      …      …      …      …      …      …      39

Reliability of the Instrument    …      …      …      …      …      …      …      39

Method of Data Collection      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      40

Techniques for Data Analysis …      …      …      …      …      …      …      40

 

CHAPTER FOUR:  DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS

Research Questions       …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      41

Testing of Hypothesis    …      …      …      …      …      …      …      …      52

Major Findings of the Study   …      …      …      …      …      …      …      56

Discussion of Findings on Research Questions    …      …      …      …      56

Major Findings on Hypotheses Tested …  …      …      …      …      …      58

Discussion of Findings on Research Questions    …      …      …      …      59

Discussion of Findings on Hypothesis                 …      …      …      …      …      61

 

CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Re-statement of the Problem   …      …      …      …      …      …      …      63

Summary of Procedures used  …      …      …      …      …      …      …      64

Summary of Findings          …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        65

Hypotheses …          …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        66

Implication for Marketing Education                   …        …        …        …        …        67

Conclusion    …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        68

Recommendations   …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        68

Suggestions for further research                …        …        …        …        …        …        69

References    …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        …        70

Appendix .A. Sample Size Determination            …        …        …        …        …        74

  1. A letter to the Validators … …        …        …        …        …        …        77
  2. Questionnaire for the Respondents … …        …        …        …        …        78
  3. Print out of the Result of Reliability and Data Analyses.

 

ix

Abstract

 

The major purpose of the study was to determine the extent to which brand associations influence the purchase decision of business students on clothing items in tertiary institutions of Bayelsa State. The study answered four research questions and tested four hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The population of the study consisted of 666 students of business both Niger Delta University Wilberforce Island and Isaac Jasper Boro College of Education Sagobama all in Bayelsa State. The sample sized of the study was 250 business students. A structured questionnaire consisting of 38 items was developed and used for data collection. The instrument was face-validated by three experts, two from Niger Delta University while the other was from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Cranach Alpha method of establishing reliability was used to determine the internal consistency of the instrument and this yielded a reliability co-efficient of 0.93. A total of 250 copies of the questionnaire was distributed to respondents (students) by the researcher and three instructors who assisted him. The data collected were analyzed using mean score while analysis of variance  (ANOVA) was used to test the four null hypotheses at 0.05 level of study revealed that the various types of brand associations like customer benefits, product attributes, product place of origin and price of the produce do influence consumers (students) in their purchase decision on clothing items. Based on the finding of the study and conclusions drawn, the researcher recommended that manufacturers should endeavour to brand their clothing items before introducing them to the market for this will enabled them to properly differentiate, position and segment their clothing product for increased sales. Likewise, consumers (students) should also endeavour to know various types of brand associations which in turn will assist them in making an informed purchase decision on clothing products.

CHAPTER ONE 

Background of the study

Over the last decade, firms have increased their investments in the creation and development of brands. A brand is a distinguishing name and/or symbol intended to identify the goods or services of either one seller or a group of sellers and to differentiate those goods or services from those of competitors (Aaker, 1991). Brands provide multiple sensory stimuli to enhance customer recognition. For example, a brand can be visually recognizable from its packaging Logo, shape, etc. (Aaker, 1991) brands are used as external cues to taste, design, quality, prestige, value among others. In other words, consumers associate the value of a product with the brand. A brand thus signals to the customer the sources of the product, and protects both the customer and the producer from competitors who would attempt to provide products that appear to be identical. A brand stands for the immediate image, emotions or perceptions people experience when they think of a product.

A brand represents all the tangible and intangible qualities and aspects of a product or service. A brand represents a collection of feelings and perceptions about quality, image, lifestyle and status.

The creation of a brand implies communicating a certain brand image in such a way that all the firms target groups link such a brand (thus, the products sold using its name) with a set of associations. Thus, brand associations are the other informational nodes linked to the brand node in memory and contain the meaning of the brand for consumers (Keller, 1998). Brand association is anything which is deep seated in customers mind about the brand (http:www.managementstudyguide.com).

Keller (1998) classifies brand associations into three major categories: benefits, attributes and attitudes. Therefore, benefits are the personal values consumer attach to the brand attributes that is, what consumers think the brand can do for them, while attributes are those descriptive features that characterize a brand, such as what a consumer thinks the brand is or has and what is involved with its purchase or consumption and lastly, attitudes are the consumers overall evaluation of a brand. In the country of origin or product place of origin, Cateora (1996) asserts that a company competing in global markets may manufacture product world –wide and when the customers become aware of the country of origin, there is the possibility that the place of manufacture will affect product/ brand image positively.

Brand associations are the attributes of brand which come into consumers mind when the brand is mentioned. It is related with the implicit and explicit meaning which a customer relates or associates with a specific brand name. Producers or professional marketers use brand association to differentiate, position and brand their products in order to create positive feelings to the consumer towards the brand. They use it to segment their products to the target market. The eight brand associations which this work is centered on are namely: customer benefit, product attributes, product place of origin or country of origin, use/application, user/customer, celebrity, lifestyle/personality and lastly, competitors.

Customer benefit are the personal values consumer attach to the brand attributes that is, what consumers think the brand can do for them. It is a kind of brand association which refers how the needs of customers are being satisfied by a particular brand of product. These benefits may be rational, psychological (emotional) or self expressive. Lee and Steckel (1999) noted that the utility or value derived from consumption of a product depends upon the context in which it is consumed or used. Therefore, these expected benefits from various brands of clothing items influence the purchase decision of consumers (students) on campuses. Examples of some branded clothing materials are: Next, T.M, Marks and Spencers, Calvin Klein, Addidas, Mawool, Italian Kanally, Italian Cashnear, etc.

 

Product attributes are those descriptive features that characterize a brand, such as what a consumer thinks the brand is or has and what is involved with its purchase or consumption. It is a brand association that refers to product characteristic. Attributes are associated with a product’s rational benefit. When making purchase decision, the consumers will compare a variety of attributes such as: suitability, quality, price, brand, style, design, size, shape colour of various brands of clothing items. Therefore, these characteristics or features of branded clothing items influence purchase decision of students on campuses.

Country of origin or product place of origin is a kind of brand association which refers to the country in which manufacturing of specific brand of products are made (Ahmed, 2004). Country of origin shows how consumers perceive specific brand of products from various national origin and which influences their behaviour towards purchasing that product. Infact, this is used by consumers to form belief about a product brand, which in-turn influences their attitude towards purchase decision. Use/application is a kind of association which an individual associate a brand with a particular use or application. For example, lager beer can be associated with good friends in a warm social setting. White colour clothing for peace in the society. User/customer is a kind of association where a marketer associates the brand with its target segment like positioning of a brand. For example a brand can be associated with those who are interested in covering their whole body or those who want skimpy clothing in the society. Celebrity is a famous individual who endorses a brand. Linking a celebrity with a brand can transfer associations such as reliability, strength, performance etc. this type of association is geared towards the individual who renders services to consumers in the society. Life style /personality is a brand that can be viewed as a person. Like a person, a brand can be perceived as being competent, trustworthy, active etc. a brand personality may communicate a product’s attribute and thus contribute to a functional benefit.

Competitors as an association positions its brand using the organization’s attributes such as innovation, a drive for quality, and a concern for the environment. A firm can position its brand with respect o a competitor.

Therefore, all these types of brand associations will at different point in time influence the purchase decision of consumers (students) on clothing items in their various campuses.  Influence in the generic term refers to compliance and persuasion. According to Jonathan (1995) influence refer to the power to affect some body’s attention, action and character or belief especially by providing an example to follow. For example, a marketer advertising a particular brand of products seeks to influence viewers (consumers) towards accepting it by giving examples on how some clothing items are being used and the benefits there of (Wikipedia, 2009). Influence is about establishing trust, credibility and authority and reaching out to potential and existing customers. Influence is also about engaging, listening to and making potential customer to talk about the producer easily and find the products and enable the customer work for the producers (Wikipedia, 2006).

When the consumers (students) are fully influenced by the various types of brand associations, individual consumer of clothing items will go further to consider the prices of different brand of clothing items. If the prices are favourable then, purchase decision can take place. Therefore, price is perhaps the most important reason why buyers regularly patronize a particular brand of product. Porter (1990) described price as the amount of money needed to purchase something or a brand of product. Brewster (2004) posited that price is the high value or worth of a product. Brewster maintained that from the business and economic point of view, price is the result of an exchange and from that trade; a numerical monetary value is assigned to the goods or services. However, price according to Rosseau (1995) is a component of an exchange or transaction that takes place between two parties and refers to what must be given up by one party (buyer) in other to obtain something offered by another (seller). Therefore, if the price of a given brand of product is favourable to the consumer, he or she will go on for the purchase decision.

Purchase is an act of exchange of money or a promise to pay for ownership or use of a good or service (Kurtz, 1993). Kotler and Keller (2006) described purchasing as the art of buying a product. Consumers make many purchasing decisions every day. Most large companies research on consumer buying decisions in great detail to answer questions about what consumers buy, where they buy, how and how much they buy, when they buy, and why they buy. According to Blackwell, Miniard and Engel (2006), a number of different approaches have been taken to explain consumers’ purchase decisions, Economic theories were first posited, describing the consumer as entirely rational and self-interested, psychodynamic approaches suggested that behaviour is subject to biological influence through instinctive forces or drives which act outside of conscious thought, while behavioural approaches take the opposing view, suggesting that behavior is explained by external events, and causation is attributed to factors external to the individual.

Consumer purchases are influenced strongly by the buyer’s characteristics influences which are cultural, social, personal and psychological and the buyer’s decision process which are buyer’s age and life cycle stage, occupation, economic situation, life style, and personality and self – concept.

Most contemporary theories recognize the role of the consumer’s individual cognition, with these cognitive approaches acknowledging a broad range of influences both internal and external to the actor guiding decision (Schiffman and Kanuk, 2007). One of the most cited such cognitive model is the Consumer Decision Model proposed by (Blackwell, Miniard and Engel, 2006). This model describes consumers passing through six key stages in the process of consumption or use of the product, namely: need recognition, information search, pre-purchase evaluation of alternatives, purchase decision and post purchase behavior. Infact, this is how consumers make buying decisions.

Therefore, the purchasing decisions are taken by the business students who are the consumers of clothing items. These business students are refered to as persons who are studying business related programmes in their campuses. This programme prepares students for an occupation in business. Infact, business is an economic activity which is related with continuous and regular production and distribution fo goods and services for satisfying human wants (Akrani, 2011).  According to Osuala (2004) business education is a programme of instruction which consists of two parts: office education, a vocational education programme for office careers through initial, refresher, and upgrading education leading to employability and advancement in the office occupations and general business education, a programme to provide students with information and competences, which are needed by all in managing personal business affairs and in using the services of the business world.

While in their campuses studying business programme, they need to be clothed. Due to this fact, the students make a lot of purchase decisions on clothing items. Therefore, Clothing is fiber and textile material worn on the body. The wearing of clothing is mostly restricted to human beings and is a feature of nearly all human societies. The amount and type of clothing worn depends on physical, social and geographic considerations. Some clothing types can be gender specific, Flugel, John and Carl (1996) stated that clothing performs a range of social and cultural functions, such as individual, occupational, sport and activity, social states etc. in many societies, norms about clothing reflect standards of modesty, religion, gender and social status. Clothing may also function as a form of adornment and an expression of personal taste or style.

The primary function of clothing is to improve the comfort of the wearer. Physically, clothing serves many purposes, it can serves as protection from elements and can enhance safety during hazardous activities. It protects the wearer from rough surfaces, insect bites, thorns and prickles by providing a barrier between the skin and the environment. Clothing can insulate against cold or hot conditions. Further, they can provide a hygienic barrier keeping infectious and toxic materials away from the body. Clothing also provides protection from harmful radiation.

In most cultures, gender differentiation of clothing is considered appropriate for men and women. There exists a diverse range of styles in fashion varying by geography, exposure to modern media, economic conditions. Men’s packet shirts are piece of clothing wrapped and sealed in a container which is worn by men on the upper part of the body, made of light cloth like cotton and usually having a collar and buttons at the front (Procter, 2007). Women’s clothing are materials such as dresses and trousers the female wear to cover or protect or decorate their body (Bullon, 2003). Male clothes are often more practical (that is, they can function well under a wide variety of situations), but a wider range of clothing styles are available for females.

These early years of the 21st Century, western clothing styles had, to some extent, become international styles. The process of cultural dissemination has perpetuated over the centuries as Western media corporations have penetrated markets throughout the world, spreading Western culture and styles. Fast fashion clothing has also become a global phenomenon.

Most sport and physical activities are practiced wearing special clothing, for practical, comfort or safety reasons. Many kinds of clothing are designed to be ironed before they are worn to remove wrinkles. Therefore, the students (male and female) in various campuses in tertiary institutions of Bayelsa State are  influence by the benefits and attributes of branded clothing items in making their purchase decisions.

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