Producer or Consumer Behavior: A Marketing Chicken/Egg Scenario

Have you ever wanted to positively impact someone in a big way? Or maybe you really didn’t want to fail – or fail someone?

Try to think deeply on a specific experience. How did you feel? What thoughts did you have? What actions did you take?

Recently, I had the privilege of kicking off a project to potentially help special needs women and their children at a local women’s shelter. We will be marketing a product and the women will be processing and packaging it for sale. If all goes well, we will have provided jobs to tens of ladies, paying a living wage, giving them valuable work experience.

Without that shelter, the women would be homeless with children and/or pregnant.

The thought of that is frankly staggering.

Ironically, the project is for my consumer behavior class, but initially, it has me contemplating my own reactions and feelings to the project, without even having met those that may benefit.

I want the best-possible outcome for these women so badly, I’ve lost sleep over it and drained myself thinking about it.

As a marketer, we’d more-often be poring over insights like this Foursquare report on The Diversity of Moms. It breaks out new moms, from empty-nesters and working moms from millennial moms and more. It certainly gives great clues that one could use to target tea drinkers, for example (I’m competing against classmates who may be reading this, so I can’t give more info…you’ll have to read it yourself 😉).

So, before we put on our “marketer” hats, we are human beings. And before our customers put on their “consumer” hats, they are also human beings. To me, this means that while we may study trends, correlations, insights, big data, etc. ultimately, the entire system works best when we remember that we are people working with other people. It’s like asking which came first: the chicken or the egg. It was the egg – there are fossil records of eggshells long before the first chicken. You’re welcome!


Let’s not allow for broken funnels. And when we’re seeking insights into consumer behavior, let’s not forget how our behavior can impact – both good and bad – the end-user, and ourselves.

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