Eric Johnson

Things That Go Bump in the Mind: How Behavioral Economics Could Invigorate Marketing


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In this comment, the author addresses several challenges that must be overcome for a behavioral economics approach to prosper in marketing. First, parameters, such as those for loss aversion, impatience, and related constructs, are useful summaries of more complex processes. Because marketers must understand, explain, and change behavior, a deeper level of understanding of the relationship among these parameters and processes is useful. The second challenge is individual differences. Marketing depends on how people differ. This is the basis of market segmentation, product positioning, and other activities, yet economics often minimizes these differences, which makes it less useful even as a behavioral perspective. The third challenge is that academic marketing is divided into at least two fields that do not communicate with each other, at least as measured by citations in the major journals.

Nonetheless, the direction taken by Ho, Lim, and Camerer is applauded, and the author argues that both behavioral and quantitative marketers should share the common ground represented by behavioral economics.

Source: Journal of Marketing Research
Exact Citation:
Johnson, Eric. "Things That Go Bump in the Mind: How Behavioral Economics Could Invigorate Marketing." Journal of Marketing Research 43, no. 3 (August 2006): 337-340.
Volume: 43
Number: 3
Pages: 337-340
Date: 8 2006