For businesses that provide consumer goods and services, managers not only need to know what their consumers think, but also how they think. This course focuses on the latter—understanding and managing consumer decision-making. Understanding these decision processes provides managers with critical tools for predicting their customer’s behavior across a wide spectrum (e.g., reactions to advertising, in-store promotions, preference construction, choice behavior), which in turn enables more accurate forecasting of demand. The course will apply insights from cognitive psychology, social psychology, decision science, and behavioral economics to examine consumer attention, comprehension, and memory processes, and how these processes influence downstream consumer decisions.

Although the major focus of the course is on consumer decision-making, one of the added benefits of the course is that the general concepts we cover are often equally applicable to employee decision-making and managerial decision-making.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the course, you will be able to:

  • Acquire knowledge of the most recent research on human thinking processes
  • Understand how consumers think and make decisions
  • Apply this knowledge to managerial decisions on marketing strategies and tactics
  • Analyze behavioral evidence to evaluate alternative marketing strategies