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Writing Assignment 1

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Writing Assignment #1 – Segmentation and Consumer Research
This paper examines research on segmentation and consumer behavior. Consumers can be described using geographic, benefits sought, psychographic, and behavioristic dimensions, yet demographic factors continue to be top of mind predictors or explanations of shopping patterns. Consumer segments are often described using demographic characteristics such as age, gender, race, ethnicity, income & education, and many demographic stereotypes exist about what and how consumers buy. Some stereotypes are close to the behavioral reality of today, while others are not. This paper challenges you to examine current research on segmentation and consumer behavior and shopping data from the MRI Reporter Database.
To learn about recent research on segmentation and consumer behavior, particularly the demographics of age, gender or race/ethnicity, access the Business Source Premier database available through the Temple University library website and locate at least two relevant academic articles published since 2000. Relevant academic journals include Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Consumer Behavior, Journal of Retailing, Journal of Consumer Marketing, Journal of Consumer Affairs, and Young Consumers.
The paper should be 3-4 pages and should use three headings in bold and underlined: Introduction; Findings From Past Research; and Conclusion. You can choose your specific topic - just pick a demographic to analyze. Examples: 1) you could analyze the differences between Baby Boomers and Millenials; 2) analyze shoppers who prefer going to the mall versus shopping online; 3) Coupon users versus non-Coupon users; 4) Analyze how “Mothers-to-Be” are targeted/segmented before, during and after childbirth. You can even choose something controversial if you’re so inclined i.e. how teenagers are targeted/segmented by fast-food chains.
In the introduction, clarify the focus of the paper, and develop a thesis statement on the value of the segmentation dimension(s) for predicting or explaining consumer behavior. The introduction should engage the reader and describe what the paper will address.
In the findings section, refer to published research on segmentation and consumer behavior. Cite at least two academic sources and two industry/trade sources. Reflect on and integrate the readings – in other words, don’t just regurgitate information from the articles, synthesize it. Note several examples of how demographic dimensions explain differences in shopping attitudes and behavior, and examples of when demographics do not offer a good explanation. Identify areas of agreement in past research, and areas of disagreement or controversy.
Conclude with a discussion of the value of demographic generalizations, and provide implications of the research (the “so what”) for marketing managers. Refer back to the thesis statement. Provide ideas for future research on this topic.
Writing Style
Adopt the tone of a marketing professional writing a report for a colleague or client. Use structured business-like style. The introduction captures the reader’s interest, introduces the topic, and expresses the main idea or thesis of the paper. Each section of the body of the paper is constructed of well-organized paragraphs that open with a topic sentence and provide supporting details and evidence. The paragraphs in the body of the paper include closing statements that explain why the information is important and/or the implications of the research. The conclusion summarizes the key findings and re-states the main idea or thesis.
Include a title page. Do not number the title page, but number the rest of the pages. The paper should be 3-4 pages, plus title page and references. Double space, use 1inch margins and 11 or 12 point, sans serif font. Include a list of references. Staple the pages. Use APA style for referring to sources within your paper and in your reference list.

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