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Consumption Rituals A strategic marketing framework

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Consumption Rituals A strategic marketing framework

The paper “Consumption Rituals: A Strategic Marketing Framework” by Filiberto Amati and Francisco Pestana presents a comprehensive analysis and framework to understand consumption rituals and their impact on marketing strategies and brand development. The authors argue that while consumer habits have been extensively studied for their implications on routinized behavior, rituals differ by adding an emotional and symbolic dimension to consumer activities, thereby offering a richer avenue for brand engagement and product innovation.

Initially, the paper delineates the distinction between habits and rituals, highlighting that rituals encompass symbolic meanings and serve as a form of communication, whereas habits are more about routine behaviors lacking an emotional component. By exploring rituals’ origins in the magic-religious sphere and their evolution into consumer research, the authors outline the main dimensions of rituals: actor-participants, audience, script, and artifacts. This foundation is utilized to discuss rituals’ relevance across societal, economic, and branding contexts.

The significance of rituals is underscored through their societal and economic impact, including their role in creating community bonds, establishing social order, facilitating transitions, and impacting consumer behavior in significant economic sectors. The paper argues that rituals can profoundly affect brands by transferring cultural meanings, enhancing product and brand consumption, and fostering brand communities’ development and longevity.

To apply these insights practically, Amati and Pestana propose a framework comprising seven dimensions for analyzing consumption rituals: stars and guest roles, context and moments, meanings and symbols, frequency, sequence and structure, performance and aesthetics, and learning and propagation. This framework aims to assist marketers in understanding and leveraging consumption rituals for brand building and product innovation.

Four case studies—Oreo’s “Twist, Lick, and Dunk” campaign, Corona Beer’s lime ritual, NIKEiD’s customization service, and Philips Living Colors mood lighting—are analyzed using the proposed framework to demonstrate its applicability in identifying and exploiting existing or developing new consumption rituals for strategic advantage.

The paper concludes that understanding and strategically leveraging consumption rituals can significantly enhance brand building, product development, and innovation. It suggests that this approach holds particular promise for companies aiming to innovate and compete more effectively in their markets, including Polish firms seeking to capitalize on economic growth opportunities through innovation and consumer-centric strategies.

Overall, “Consumption Rituals: A Strategic Marketing Framework” provides a novel lens through which marketers and researchers can explore the intricate relationship between consumer behavior, rituals, and strategic brand development, offering a pathway to more resonant and effective marketing practices.

Amati, F., & Pestana, F. (2015). Consumption rituals: A strategic marketing framework. Economic Studies, 2, 229-246.


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