The purpose of this paper is to alert services marketers that a new methodology exists for researching many of the components of the consumer decision making process.
This methodology involves the use of real‐time measurements of neural (brain) activity associated with the presentation of various marketing stimuli. Instead of relying on traditional inferential associations to explain consumer behavior, this approach provides direct correlational associations.
The ability to examine what specific brain function or functions are activated during various stages of the consumer's decision‐making process should help service marketers improve their efficiency and effectiveness. While neuromarketing has applications to all forms of product marketing, it is of particular interest to services marketers because of the intangible nature of services; thus making conventional research more difficult and speculative.
Information for this paper was gathered from a variety of literature resources because the use of neural imaging has been used in many different physical and social sciences such as medicine, economics, political science, marketing, and psychology. While a few specific examples of using neuromarketing for the marketing of services exist, most are proprietary. This limits the generalizability of this paper currently but hopefully does not diminish interest in an area of research that has great potential for helping to answer many difficult questions.
Services marketers are encouraged to follow the technique as it evolves from medical procedure to marketing procedure.
Fugate, D.L. (2008), "Marketing services more effectively with neuromarketing research: a look into the future", Journal of Services Marketing, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 170-173. https://doi.org/10.1108/08876040810862903
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