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Introduction and Overview
Product marketing is a complex phenomenon that requires a good understanding on the concepts of the product and subject consumer segments. The phenomenon incorporates a wide range of elements that comprise the product, consumer preferences, marketing environment, and the society. By using theories like symbolic interactionism and looking glass self; marketers develop products that are in line with consumer preferences.
Symbolic interactionism focus on the society and self in development of a meaning that objects have on individuals based on social interactions and personal interpretations. Consequently, looking glass self is a theory, which explains that people derive the significance of a product using the perspectives of others and individual interpretations. Smart marketers follow the concepts of the theories in designing products that are successful in the market. Therefore, the essay examines how marketers use the theories of ‘symbolic interactionism’ and ‘looking glass self’ to get consumers purchase their products, create self-identity, and highlight the social value of their product offerings.
The Theories Used and the Examples
The theories used in the essay are ‘symbolic interactionism’ and ‘looking glass self’. During the process of product design and promotion, the theories play an integral part in creation of a product image and identify before the potential consumers in the target market. The theories not only help the marketers identify the preferences of the clients, but also facilitate conversion of these preferences and expectations into finished products. Presently, several potential clients in the society value their money and equate the quality of products with their attached monetary value. Lamb, Hair, and McDaniel (2009) elucidate that marketers need to design products that match client demands and expectations. Apple Company is very practical in the use of the theory of looking glass self in marketing its products. Furthermore, MacDonald Company uses the theory of symbolic interactionism to promote the identity of its products before its prospective clients.
The Theories of Symbolic Interactionism and Looking Glass Self
Symbolic interactionism is a theory, which explains that people define the meaning of objects using the perspectives developed through interactions with others around them. The theory uses society and people as its main premises. In asserting the essence of the society and interaction in image development, the theory highlights that an isolation of the individual and the environment is not possible. According to Reynolds and Herman-Kinney (2003), the theory states that individuals need to interact with others in the society so that they develop the image of an object. After the interactions with others in the society, the individuals then ascribe the meaning of an object or product using a process of interpretation.
The theory of looking glass self explains that individuals develop the meaning of objects or products using the perspectives of others around them. The theory states that people look at the actions of others towards the products or objects and make their judgments basing on the observation. Lamb, Hair, and McDaniel (2009) explain that the theory asserts that people look at the judgments given by others concerning their personalities or identities and in turn make adjustments on what they perceive is the right identity. As a result, the theory is important in definition of product quality and personal identity.
Discussion and Explanation
From the terminologies in the theories, it is clear that they have a close relationship with the activities observed in Apple and MacDonald companies. In their quest to increase their consumer base and market share, Apple Company has introduced a range of products that match consumer expectations in terms of price and technology (Stewart, 2011). Since the theory of looking glass self explains that people make their judgments using opinions of others around them, the ability of the company’s products and brands to match client expectations leads to a positive reputation from the society. The implication of a positive reputation on the products and brands from the company is an increased purchase of its products from potential clients, who judge its products and brands positively basing on the society’s reflection.
MacDonald Company is also marketing its products using the theory of symbolic interactionism as it employs the elements valued by the society. By using red and yellow colors in their brands, the company is able to promote its products and effectively capture the attention of the target clients. According to Reynolds and Herman-Kinney (2003), symbolic interactionism theory explains that people behave in accordance to the ascribed meanings of the products. As a result, since several individuals believe that red and yellow colors make them hungry, the use of the colors by the company is a successful strategy that amplifies the company’s identity.
The theories of symbolic interactionism and looking glass self are very important in marketing products, creation of identity, and highlighting the value of product offerings in several companies. The theories help companies market their products and gain identity from potential consumers. For instance, symbolic interactionism theory helps MacDonald Company to design products that match the preferences and tastes of consumers. By using colors that boost appetite in their products, the company not only increases its consumer base, but also augments the identity of its products. Consequently, when Apple Company uses its brand to achieve a positive reputation from the society, it successfully employs the theory of looking glass self to amplify its identity and brand in the society.
Lamb, C., Hair, J., & McDaniel, C. (2009). Marketing. New York: Cengage Learning. Web.
Reynolds, L., & Herman-Kinney, N. (2003). Handbook of Symbolic Interactionism. Maryland: AltaMira Press. Web.
Stewart, S. (2011). Using the Looking Glass Self Theory to Cultivate Identity Value: A Study of the Apple Brand. Canada. Web.