Many marketing experts understand there is a clear connection between culture and consumer behavior. Culture has the ability to greatly influence how consumers choose to spend money and even which products out of several options they ultimately choose to purchase. Interwoven with other considerations such as age, gender, and location, the influence of culture on consumer behavior is something that companies must understand if they are to build rapport with customers that helps to increase loyalty and continue to generate sales.
When it comes to culture and consumer behavior, a number of sub-factors related to culture will impact how and when consumers choose to buy products. For example, religion is a crucial element in many cultures, and will have a significant impact on what goods and services members of that culture are willing to consider buying. This means that if the dominant religious culture in a given geographic area discourages the use of tobacco or alcohol, the potential pool of consumers for those products will be smaller. For this reason, companies which make or distribute those types of products will limit advertising in the area, focusing attention on other markets in which there are no sociological taboos on the use of those products.
Since culture has to do with how people feel, think, and act, the connection between culture and consumer behavior demands that companies understand what a targeted group of consumers will think about a given product, and how they will respond to chances to buy those products. Taking the time to understand the prevailing culture within a given territory makes it much easier to determine how to go about marketing certain products, or whether to even try to market those products at all. For example, establishing a fast food restaurant in a small town where the prevailing culture calls for households to eat the majority of their meals at home will likely not generate the profits of a similar restaurant found in a culture where eating out is more common. While that restaurant may be able to earn a profit, it will most likely have to adjust the menu to include items that capture the attention of local consumers and offer them something different from what they prepare at home, while still offering items that fit well into the mindset of those consumers.
The strong relationship between culture and consumer behavior can have an impact on the purchase of all sorts of goods and services, ranging from household appliances to major purchases like automobiles. By being able to properly assess that connection between culture and consumer behavior, companies can adjust marketing campaigns to make the products relevant to those targeting consumers and increase the chances of earning their business. While in some cases this may mean launching alternative products that appeal to specific groups of consumers, this approach can be very lucrative in terms of meeting people at the point of their need and creating demand for those products.