Family Decision-Making And Advertising

Fred Bronner
University of Amsterdam

Democracy in families is growing fast. Consequently, there is a strong move from individual to joint decisions, which has serious implications for advertising[1].

Marriages are like firms

In market research it is still the individual who is interviewed and analysed. And the same applies to the advertising world: ads speak to the individual. But is it not high time to change the focus?

The family has evolved into what business research calls a DMU, a decision-making unit.

Decisions taken in the business world are the result of a complicated process of interaction between influential individuals in the company. In families a similar process is evolving: 'Marriages are like firms'[2]. Among the principal values present in modern families are understanding, equality and compromise. This applies in the wider sense, but is certainly valid as regards consumer behaviour within the family.