In every human’s life there are needs that have to be met in order to survive. These needs are laid out in Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. His diagram is a pyramid of needs that start off at the bottom, with the needs of basic survival, and it works its way to the top. The top needs are needs that are not required for human survival, but are necessary for a successful and happy life. In the diagram, some of the needs mentioned are security, comfort, the desire to be wanted and loved, to be respected and to have affectionate relationships.
Needs like these are acquirable, but many of them have been so watered down that people really do not know the true meaning behind them. Because of this, companies target people that do not know any better, and tell them that their products will satisfy these needs, when in reality it will only make things worse. For example, when one sees an advertisement about a body spray, the advertisement would lead someone to believe that by simply using the body spray, people will become attracted to them.
People believe these lies because of the fact that the ad suggests that one will achieve the need through the product, and unless a person views the ad analytically, the ad will work no matter how intelligent the viewer is. Another example is the advertisement of the medicine Valtrex. The advertisement makes the viewer see genital herpes as a gentle disease, with very few effects. It gives the viewer a false since of security. Because of the viewer is so gullible, the advertiser really can send any message, and most of the time it will be accepted. Many businesses use these tactics against the viewers.
But others use it going about advertising in a more fair way. Many businesses can abuse the power they have over the consumers, but other companies’ just use the power they have to benefit their stores, while still being truthful to the customer. Best Buy does use the diagram that Maslow created in their favor. Their main focus is the costumer that wants to have status and reputation. Best Buy uses this knowledge about the consumer in a way that can help attract certain people. The message that the stores send is not a false hope, but instead it is a way for people to understand what they are getting out of the store.
Best Buy sends a message that if you shop there and buy their products then you can keep up with the jones’. Shopping at Best Buy and buying the big screen TV’s and the HD DVD players and the newest gaming system gives the costumers a since of accomplishment. Because of this people get the idea that shopping at Best Buy does in-fact help you reach a certain social status’. Watching different Best Buy commercials you can immediately point out their target consumer. They are looking for two different groups of people. The first group that Best Buy is searching for is in their mid to upper twenties.
This group wants the biggest and best technology, they are typically the young adults just out of college that have money and have no other thing to spend it on. So they go out and buy the biggest TV, the best sound system, and the best gaming system, so they can feel important. Because of these people’s desire to have a since of status, the stores and the commercials give you the idea that Best Buy is the place to find such things that can help improve your status. For example, there is a commercial that is on television that shows a family on Fathers Day.
One of his sons walks up and throws his present for his father on the table, but he looks and sees that someone has bought his father a gift from Best Buy. He then takes the tag off of the gift he bought for his father, and switches it with the tag of the gift from Best Buy. The closing of the commercial has a Best Buy associate that says, “It’s a no brainer, dads want a gift from Best Buy… wow dad at Best Buy” (You Tube). Another way they attract this target customer, is they fill the store with different gadgets that anyone can walk up to and use. The store has a “hands on” feeling to it.
You can walk to one side of the store and have full control of a stereo system, and walk to the other side of the store and be playing guitar hero on the Xbox 360. This is also shown in a Best Buy advertisement that starts off with a middle aged man in the bathroom, messing with the sinks and the hand dryers. He is jumping around like a little kid playing with the things in the bathroom when an older man walks out of one of the stalls, he is caught in the act of being childish.
The commercial is ended with a Best Buy associate saying, “love playing around with stuff? Then get into Best Buy. (You Tube). The store being so hands on caters to the group that is looking for the biggest and best items, because they can walk in and use all the products, and decide for themselves what will help them reach the top of the social ladder. The second group that Best Buy targets is a group that is a little older. This group is made up of people in their late thirties and early forties. They are a group that just wants the next best thing that can help their families. The main thing they are looking for is knowledge. They normally have kids and are looking for their kid’s approval.
Maslow would say that they desire achievement. They really are clueless when it comes to technology, and some advertisements make them believe that walking in to Best Buy, they will immediately be welcomed by someone that knows every detail about every product in the store. Best Buy Stores are pushing towards a work force that revolves around the customer. The stores are transforming their number one focus “by shifting the company’s focus from pushing gadgets to catering to customers” (Fortune Magazine). “[Best Buy] wants customers to keep buying by putting them at the center of what it does” (CRMBuyer).
The customer centricity is changing the stores to cater more to the older group instead of the younger group. The stores are catering more to the middle aged families that are trying to keep up with the times, and get the best technology that can best help their families. While the hands on feel to the store keeps the younger group occupied, the employees main focus is to educate the families and the older customers so they can find exactly what they are looking for. These two groups are very different, but Best Buy uses all their resources very well to cater to both of these groups.
Best Buy uses its marketing strategy, as well as the layout of the store to what many would call perfection. They have a duel system that has been proven unbeatable. They have truly conquered their task by targeting certain groups and meeting their needs. They have developed a target customer and found what they are looking for, the needs they are trying to fulfill, and how they can cater to them. These reasons are the foundation of why Best Buy is as successful as it is. Because they understand Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, and how to best apply it to their store and its success.