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Retail store image : a conceptual study Becker, Wilfred 1967

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RETAIL STORE IMAGE: A CONCEPTUAL STUDY by WILFRED BECKER B.A. , University of B r i t i s h Columbia, .1949 A t h e s i s submitted i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for the degree of MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION i n the Faculty of Commerce and Business Administration We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r i l , 1967 In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s in p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f the r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r an advanced d e g r e e a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , I ag ree t h a t t h e L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and s t u d y . I f u r t h e r a g r e e t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may be g r a n t e d by t h e Head o f my D e p a r t m e n t o r by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l n o t be a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . Depa r t m e n t The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a V a n c o u v e r 8, C^rybda i i ABSTRACT The concern of t h i s paper i s to conceptualize a better under-standing of the term "image" as i t appears i n marketing l i t e r a t u r e e s p e c i a l l y i n r e l a t i o n to products, brands, corporations and r e t a i l stores. The primary emphasis i s upon r e t a i l store image; how i t forms, why i t forms, what shape i t takes and how i t may be changed. The need fo r c l a r i f i c a t i o n of the term "image" i s v i t a l i f marketers are to evolve s t r a t e g i e s which w i l l enhance the sale of t h e i r goods. The concept of r e t a i l store "image" i s developed by introducing the formal theory of attitudes as formulated i n s o c i a l psychology, i n an e f f o r t to show that attitudes give r i s e to images and that by under-standing the nature of a t t i t u d e s , r e t a i l store management might better understand the forces which determine and change the store image. Two propositions are forwarded which serve to provide the t h e o r e t i c a l framework f o r the discussion. The f i r s t p roposition states that r e t a i l store "image" can best be explained i n terms of attitud e theory and that images are but s i m p l i f i e d attitude summations and pro-vide the consumer with a ready preference map of stores arranged i n a h i e r a r c h i c a l scale. The second propos i t i o n theorizes that s p e c i f i e d groups tend to form s i m i l a r "image" maps of preference i n a r e l a t i v e l y uniform way and with r e l a t i v e l y uniform salience. The determinants of store attitudes and therefore images are analyzed c a r e f u l l y . F i r s t l y , the functional, q u a l i t i e s of store l o c a t i o n and parking, store hours, layout and di s p l a y , p r i c e and q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n -ships, depth and width of assortment and store services are presented as being f u l l y c o n t r o l l a b l e by the r e t a i l e r . Psychological a t t r i b u t e s such i i i as the character of sales personnel, packaging, a d v e r t i s i n g tone and s t y l e of merchandise are also analyzed as c o n t r o l l a b l e determinants. F i n a l l y , the uncontrollable determinants of group influences and status connotations are dealt with as they intervene between the store's actions and the perception of these actions by consumers. The study concludes with an attempt to r e l a t e the propositions presented with theories of consumer behaviour as presented by other writers i n the f i e l d of marketing. The model of buyer behaviour evolved by John Howard appears to r e i n f o r c e the image model presented i n t h i s paper. Irving Crisp, dealing with attitude theory i n market-ing, also adds weight to the formulation of "image" theory upon the base of a t t i t u d e formation and change. F i n a l l y , the t h e o r e t i c a l model of V i c t o r Vroom i s presented to emphasize the concepts of instrumentality and expectancy as prime factors i n f l u e n c i n g attitude and image formation. i v TABLE OF CONTENTS Chapter Page I. INTRODUCTION 1 R e t a i l Store Image 2 The Concept of Image 2 Image i n Marketing 4 Limitations of the Study 5 Why Study Store Image 5 Problems of Image Analysis 6 Attitude Theory and Image 7 Proposition I V Proposition II 8 Conclusions 11 II. THEORY OF ATTITUDES 12 General Attitude Theory 12 Theories of Attitude Organization 14 Rosenberg: Attitude Organization and Change 15 Festinger: Theory of Cognitive Dissonance 18 The Measurement of Attitudes 20 Summary 22 III. THE DETERMINANTS OF STORE IMAGE 25 Functional Q u a l i t i e s 25 Store Location and Parking 25 Store Hours 27 Layout and Display 28 Price and Quality Relationships 29 V Chapter Page Depth and Width of Assortment 30 Store Services 31 Psychological Attributes 32 Character of Sales Personnel 33 Packaging 33 Advertising . . 34 Style of Merchandise 36 S o c i o l o g i c a l Determinants 36 Group Influences 37 a. Primary Group 38 b. S o c i a l Class 38 c. Reference Group 39 Status Connotations 40 Summary 42 IV. FURTHER THEORETICAL CONSIDERATIONS 44 The Howard Model 44 C r i s p : Attitude Research i n Marketing 47 Vroom: Instrumentality and Expectancy . . . 49 Summary 53 V. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION 55 Proposition I 55 Investigating Store Images: Individuals 56 Proposition II 60 Investigating Store Images: Groups 60 Conclusion 62 BIBLIOGRAPHY 64 v i Chapter Page APPENDIX I 67 APPENDIX II 68 v i i LIST OF FIGURES Figure Page I Schematic Conception of Attitudes .17 II Automobile Purchase Variables 19 III Determinants of Store Image 43 CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION This paper i s concerned with a term that has crept more and more into marketing l i t e r a t u r e and terminology; namely "image". Countless a r t i c l e s have appeared i n recent years which indi c a t e the growing concern of mar-keters with image; corporate image; product image; brand image; and more re c e n t l y , r e t a i l store image. Empirical studies have set f o r t h findings on the measurement of these four forms of "image" and the r e s u l t s of these findings have played a large r o l e i n a l t e r i n g marketing techniques employed by manufacturers, wholesalers and r e t a i l e r s . I t i s of i n t e r e s t that i n research studies and w r i t i n g there has been l i t t l e agreement as to j u s t what image i s . In most studies, the e m p i r i c a l l y derived d e f i n i t i o n s are r e s t r i c t e d to the frame of reference induced by the data c o l l e c t i o n instrument developed by the p a r t i c u l a r i n v e s t i g a t o r . I t i s often l e f t to the reader to i n f e r the r a t i o n a l e , i f any, underlying the instrument. Another approach to d e f i n i t i o n has been i n terms of factors that shape the image. For example, Dichter, i n d i s -cussing product image, suggests the following:^" ( i ) Function ( i i ) Magic ( i i i ) Mental set ( i v ) Mood (v) Symbolism ( v i ) Sensory appeals ( v i i ) History ( v i i i ) Morality. As one can r e a d i l y see, even the factors that Dichter enumerates are d i f f i c u l t i n d e f i n i t i o n themselves. It i s apparent then that the term "image" i s i n desperate need of c l a r i f i c a t i o n so that marketers, when discussing the term, might r e a d i l y 1 Ernest Dichter, Handbook of Consumer Motivations, New York, McGraw-H i l l , 1964, p. 424. 2 understand and communicate with one another whether they are speaking of corporate, product, brand or r e t a i l store image. R e t a i l Store Image To narrow the scope of t h i s study, corporate, product and brand image w i l l not be dealt with, but rather a concerted e f f o r t w i l l be made to understand the r a m i f i c a t i o n s of r e t a i l store image as i t bears upon the marketing strategy of a r e t a i l store. I t may be seen that much of the discussion w i l l also apply to corporate, product and brand image and that generalizations from t h i s study may be c a r r i e d over to other image studies. In a r e a l sense, one cannot separate corporate and r e t a i l store image for a r e t a i l store image implies a corporate image that confronts the consumer d i r e c t l y . A corporate image has been defined as: "the aggregate stimulus value a company has for a p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l or group."^ This stimulus value spreads over a l l the products a corporation produces and as w i l l be seen, r e a d i l y a f f e c t s the sale of i t s products. A r e t a i l store also has a corporate image which adheres most decidedly to the products i t handles for sale to consumers. The Concept of Image To move backward i n time, the word "image" occurred most often i n the f i e l d of art. E s p e c i a l l y i n poetry and p a i n t i n g was "image" or "imagery" de a l t with extensively i n the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of these a r t i s t i c forms. We are a l l aware of the attempts by poets to convey emotion and evoke imagination through the use of imagery. Shakespeare provides us 2 W. J. C r i s s y , "Research on Images," unpublished paper, Michigan State University, 1966, p. .1. 3 with an excellent example: "The barge she sat i n , l i k e a burnish'd throne, Burn'd on the water: the poop was beaten gold; Purple the s a i l s , and so perfumed that The winds were l o v e - s i c k with them . . . " It might surprise the reader to f i n d E n g l i s h poetry i n a marketing discussion but on reading the l i n e s the imagery conveys a p i c t u r e i n the mind which i s r e l a t i v e l y clear", and sharp. There i s l i t t l e confusion on the part of the reader as to the sight of t h i s barge on the water. It conveys an aura of luxury and q u a l i t y that adheres to the imaginative p i c t u r e of the Egyptian queen. How many marketers would d e l i g h t i n pro-ducing such a sharp image for t h e i r product or store? Shakespeare used a pen and ink. The marketer has many more to o l s at h i s d i s p o s a l and as we s h a l l see can convey a consistent image. The term, image, next became the domain of psychologists who f e l t that by analyzing images created by the manipulation of v a r i a b l e s , a better understanding of human behaviour might evolve. The Gestalt school of psychologists are most prominent i n the research of image and i t s 4 connotations. I t i s only i n recent years that marketing has adopted the term image into i t s working vocabulary. This has come about through the r e a l -i z a t i o n that consumer behaviour plays a great part i n the marketing process and i s the key to marketing strategy formulation. In order to understand consumers, marketing has incorporated many of the methods and theories of the s o c i a l sciences into i t s f i e l d of study. N a t u r a l l y , the 3 Anthony and Cleopatra, I I , i i . 4 See Kurt Lewin, "The Conceptual Representation and the Measurement of Psychological Forces," Contribution to Psychological Theory, v o l . .1, no. 4, Durham, Duke University Press, 1938. 4 theories r e l a t i n g to image and image formation became a t o p i c of wider study and research. Image i n Marketing The introduction of the basic concepts of product and brand image into marketing took place i n the l a t e 1940's by Dr. B. B. Gardner and Louis Cheskin.^ Since then, there has been a wide i n t e r e s t by marketers i n exploring the concept of Image as i t applies to ad v e r t i s i n g and promo-t i o n of corporations, brands, products and r e t a i l stores. While the majority of the i n t e r e s t has centred on brand image and i t s measurement there has been l i t t l e i n the l i t e r a t u r e concerning store image. This sudden i n t e r e s t i n image by marketers has brought about the awareness that image plays a large part i n consumer decision-making. The extreme i n t e r e s t i n brand image i s of course fundamental to manufacturers operating within a n a t i o n a l or i n t e r n a t i o n a l marketplace and attempting to d i f f e r e n t i a t e t h e i r product and brand as c l e a r l y and as sharply as i s possible. They are attempting to influence consumer choice so as to make i t an almost automatic process. The examples of Heinz Ketchup, Coca-Cola, Kellog's Rice K r i s p i e s come to mind of strong, consistent, brand images. Some might regard these as corporate images and they may suggest that corporate and brand image are s i m i l a r . It would be d i f f i c u l t to disagree with such a comparison as i t i s a v a l i d point. Images, whether of product, brand, corporation or store a l l have e s s e n t i a l s i m i l a r i t i e s which cannot be studied independently. 5 Remus H. H a r r i s , "How C r e a t i v i t y i n Marketing Can Develop the Image That Counts," Advertising Age, July 2.1, 1958, p. 61. 5 L i m i t a t i o n of the Study The r e s t r i c t i o n of t h i s study to r e t a i l store image i s a l i m i t a t i o n which cannot be overlooked. There are brand images which enhance the image of the store carrying the brand. There are stores whose image ad~ heres to the products and brands i t s e l l s to the consumer. There are corporate images which permeate to the brands, products and to the store s e l l i n g these products. Yet, i t i s store image we w i l l now look at and though the l i m i t a t i o n s are r e a l , they w i l l be overlooked for the purpose of t h i s study. Why Study Store Image The importance of c l a r i f y i n g the concept of store image i s i l l u s t r a t e d by the following quotation: "Store image has many e s s e n t i a l overtones which are worthy of study . . . . the e s s e n t i a l point i s the propensity of customers i n the relevant population to trade r e g u l a r l y i n a store with-out s p e c i f i c regard for t h e i r needs to buy p a r t i c u l a r items." and " C l e a r l y there i s a force operative i n the determination of a store's customer body besides the obvious f u n c t i o n a l factors of l o c a t i o n , p r i c e ranges, and merchandise o f f e r i n g s . . . . t h i s force i s the store personality or image - the way i n which the store i s defined i n the shopper's mind, p a r t l y by the func-t i o n a l q u a l i t i e s and p a r t l y by an aura of psychological a t t r i b u t e s . " It follows then that the conscious b u i l d i n g of store image i s an important marketing t o o l for the r e t a i l e r . .He may ignore the image he i s b u i l d i n g through h i s actions, yet i f there i s a force which he can i n f l u -ence he i s surely i n a p o s i t i o n to draw more customers into h i s store and 6 Wroe Alderson, Dynamic Marketing Behaviour, Homewood I l l i n o i s , Richard D. Irwin, 1965, p. 213. 7 Pierre Martineau, "The Personality of the R e t a i l Store," Harvard  Business Review, v o l . 36, no. 1, Jan.-Feb. 1958, p. 47. 6 increase h i s market share. In order to influence t h i s image, he must understand how i t forms and what e f f o r t s he may make to achieve the desired image. It i s the purpose of t h i s paper to attempt to explain how images form, why they form, what shape they may take and how they may be measured so that the r e t a i l e r may t e s t whether h i s overt actions i n b u i l d i n g h i s image are along the desired course he has intended. Problem of Image Analysis The r e a l problem of analysis of image l i e s not only i n the actions the r e t a i l e r takes i n b u i l d i n g an image, but may also involve the percep-t i o n s of his actions by consumers. Consumers may be classed into groups depending upon age, income, s o c i a l standing, reference group, l i f e values, experience or background, education, stage i n l i f e c y c l e , etc. and though they belong to or may be classed into groups, they d i f f e r i n d i v i d u a l l y i n terms of values, emotional r e a c t i o n , a b i l i t y and motivation. Thus, there are i n d i v i d u a l images which a r i s e i n connection with a p a r t i c u l a r store. No two people have i d e n t i c a l Images because of the multitude of factors l i s t e d above. A l l experience the store d i f f e r e n t l y i n terms of emotion or a f f e c t , perception and behaviour. I t i s r e a l l y more appropriate to r e f e r to images rather than image. As a p r a c t i c a l matter, a business i n t e r a c t s with too many people to explore i n depth i t s image with each one. Rather, categorization and grouping must occur. A r e t a i l store i s therefore faced with markets, not a market. The images r e s u l t i n g from a store's strategy are d i f f e r e n t f o r various groups and measurement i s d i f f i c u l t . 7 Attitude Theory and Image The c e n t r a l purpose of t h i s paper i s to show that there i s an equa-t i o n between attitudes and images. S o c i a l psychology has developed a formal theory of attitudes which appears to aid marketers i n the concep-t u a l i z a t i o n of image.^ Irving Crisp, i n an a r t i c l e f o r the "Marketing Research Technique Series" explores the r o l e of attitu d e research i n marketing and presents a strong argument for analyzing attitudes to a r r i v e at image d e f i n i t i o n . ^ Bruce S t r a i t s , i n "The Pursuit of the Dissonant C u s t o m e r " p r e s e n t s a study of consumers a f t e r they have pur-chased items, using the cognitive dissonance theory developed by Leon F e s t i n g e r l l to explain dissonance a f t e r purchase and how the purchaser attempts to reduce dissonance. More w i l l be said i n l a t e r chapters about a t t i t u d e theory, but i t i s important early i n t h i s work to point to the d i r e c t i o n the paper w i l l take. The attempt w i l l be made to demonstrate two propositions: I. The concept of r e t a i l store 'image' can be best explained i n terms of attitu d e theory and that r e t a i l e r s may b u i l d or modify t h e i r 'image' by better understanding attitu d e formation and 8 Paul F. Secord and C. W. Backman, S o c i a l Psychology, New York, McGraw-H i l l , 1964, chapter 3. and David Krech, R. S. C r u t c h f i e l d and E. L. Ballachey, Individual i n  Society, New York, McGraw-Hill, 1962, chapter 5. 9 Irving C r i s p , Attitude Research, Marketing Research Technique Ser i e s , no. 7, American Marketing Association, .1965. 10 Bruce C. S t r a i t s , "The Pursuit of the Dissonant Customer," Journal  of Marketing, v o l . 28, no. 3, July 1964, pp. 62-66. .11 Leon Festinger, A Theory of Cognitive Dissonance, Stanford, Stanford University Press, .1957. 8 change. R e t a i l store 'images' may be looked upon as preference maps that consumers construct from experience, perceptions, s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n s values and aspirations which serves to aid them i n t h e i r decision-making as to where to go to purchase the assortment of products they require. A strong store image would then be associated with the propensity of customers to trade r e g u l a r l y i n a p a r t i c u l a r store without s p e c i f i c regard for t h e i r needs to buy p a r t i c u l a r items. II. "Image" i s those tangible and intangible properties of an object which have the e f f e c t of being cognized i n a r e l a t i v e l y uniform way with r e l a t i v e l y uniform salience by a s i g n i f i c a n t l y large proportion of a s p e c i f i e d group or aggregate of people. Proposition ( I I ) follows l o g i c a l l y from proposition (I) and as w i l l be demonstrated, has great s i g n i f i c a n c e for the measurement of store "image". The purpose of developing the propositions i s to c l a r i f y some of the research that has previously been done i n store image measurement. A recent study by Image Research Inc. for the Hudson's Bay Company, without even attempting a d e f i n i t i o n of store "image" measures imagery c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of t h i s large r e t a i l e r i n terms of: high q u a l i t y mer-chandise, modern, good values, p r i c e s , ease of shopping, etc., with no attempt made to r e l a t e why these are image c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s or what e f f e c t these v a r i a b l e s have on the acceptance of the Hudson's Bay stores. I t i s noteworthy that the study does dwell on a t t i t u d e s held by consumer groups to the store without explaining why a t t i t u d e s are studied. It i s 12 Image Research Inc., A Study of Department Store Imagery Conducted  i n Canadian Markets, prepared for the Hudson's Bay Co. Ltd., Winnipeg, Manitoba, 1964. 9 also apparent that the study does not attempt to group the sample of respondents i n order to a r r i v e at a relevant image for s i g n i f i c a n t groups. The Vancouver study i s highly weighted by p r o f e s s i o n a l occupation, college education, middle to old age consumers and consumers with an income of $.10,000 or more. (See Appendix I ) . The r e s u l t s of the study should be q u a l i f i e d by these l i m i t a t i o n s , but are not. It i s s i g n i f i c a n t that t h i s 13 study was used to change the image of the store s i g n i f i c a n t l y . I t might appear to a casual observer that the study r e a l l y was intended to r e i n f o r c e the point of view of management or the researchers, that the change was needed. A further study for the T. Eaton Co. Ltd. of t h e i r store image i n Winnipeg o f f e r s the following conclusion: "Value d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n between department stores i s l a r g e l y made on the basis of q u a l i t y . Choice i s l a r g e l y based on the degree of q u a l i t y one wants, or can a f f o r d . " - ^ The conclusion i s a r r i v e d at, not through empirical evidence, but from the bias of the interviewers. Value i s looked upon as having only two elements, q u a l i t y and p r i c e . This i s a step backward to the " r a t i o n -a l i t y of choice" doctrine inherent i n modern u t i l i t y theory. Surely a study of t h i s type measuring store image should attempt to measure image, not prove economic theory. Consumer behaviour viewed t h i s narrowly would mean that psychology, s o c i a l psychology and sociology have not influenced marketing. A further example of the weakness i n the research of store image i s 13 Business Week, "Hudson's Bay Mushes Along the Urban T r a i l , " September 3, 1966, pp. 64-68. .14 Ben Crowe & Associates Ltd. , A Store Attitude and Shopping Pattern Study, conducted for the T. Eaton Co. Ltd., Winnipeg, 1965, v o l . 3, p. 24. .10 a study by Robert Meyers of a department store "image" which asked one question of 2,400 walkouts (those who were leaving the store without p a r c e l s ) , "What do you associate with the name Brant's?"~^ Though some twenty-five percent had bought i n the store and did not have t h e i r pur-chase with them, the r e s u l t s indicated that Brant's had a high percentage of older women customers who suggested "high q u a l i t y " most often with the store's name and " s t y l e " l e a s t often. The researcher was struck with the absence of younger women i n the group of respondents and the absence of the word " s t y l e " . "High q u a l i t y " was mentioned 22 percent of the times the question was asked and " s t y l e " mentioned only 0.2 percent. The researcher then formulated the t h e s i s that i f Brant's were to maintain a qu a l i t y image but b u i l d up the s t y l e influence i n the store, then an image could be formed which would appeal to and a t t r a c t the younger women to shop at the store. He even suggested that a lower q u a l i t y of merchan-dise be sold i n departments which catered to young, middle income f a m i l i e s . Brant's did do as suggested and the increase i n sales reported by the researcher was highly pleasing. The question must be asked however, whether or not the research was the basis for the changes or whether the researcher and management were looking to v e r i f y t h e i r own b e l i e f s as to what to do to a store which was f a l l i n g behind i n adapting to i t s market and the changes within that market. In order for the researchers to notice the lack of the word " s t y l e " i n the answers to the question, they must have been convinced that s t y l e was already l a c k i n g i n the store. The research merely v e r i f i e d what was already f e l t to be needed. .15 Robert Meyers, "Sharpening Your Store Image," Journal of R e t a i l i n g , v o l . 36, no. .1, Jan.-Feb. .1958, p. 47. 11 Unfortunately, Mr. Meyer does not indicate whether or not a very heavily subsidized advertising campaign contributed greatly to the sales increase of the following year. Also, the a r t i c l e does not e s t a b l i s h whether or not " s t y l e " was the contributing reason for the increase i n sales. A follow-up study would have c l a r i f i e d the research. T y p i c a l l y , as i n a l l other studies of store image, t h i s study avoids a d e f i n i t i o n of store image. The research did point to an a t t i t u d e held by shoppers about the store which was indicated c l e a r l y i n t h e i r one word answer. A study based on one question alone, however, seems to be a rather shallow attempt at image measurement. Conclusions It would seem that a more precise understanding of store image would lead to a d e f i n i t i v e construct which might be better measured i n experi-mental research i n order to a r r i v e at a basis for a changing and strength-ening of a store's image through marketing strategy implementation. R e t a i l e r s might better understand the implications of t h e i r p o l i c i e s of a d v e r t i s i n g , store layout, store f i x t u r i n g and d i s p l a y , stock s e l e c t i o n s , sales personnel p o l i c i e s and packaging as these bear upon the formation and change of t h e i r p a r t i c u l a r store image i n the minds of t h e i r customers and p o t e n t i a l customers. The next chapter w i l l attempt to lay the foundation for the r a t i o n -ale underlying the propositions presented e a r l i e r , through an analysis of a t t i t u d e theory as developed i n s o c i a l psychology. .12 CHAPTER II THEORY OF ATTITUDES "By knowing the attitudes of people, i t i s possible to do something about the p r e d i c t i o n and con t r o l of t h e i r behaviour."-^ This introductory statement sets the key for a short t r e a t i s e on att i t u d e theory which w i l l lead into a more operative d e f i n i t i o n of store image. A c a r e f u l analysis of the above statement would lead a r e t a i l e r to the conclusion that by knowing the attitudes of consumers, he may possibly p r e d i c t and co n t r o l t h e i r consumptive behaviour. This i s "demand an a l y s i s " i n a d e s c r i p t i v e , q u a l i t a t i v e sense rather than a quantitative analysis. It can r e a d i l y be seen that the q u a l i t a t i v e analysis should precede the quantitative study of p o t e n t i a l demand. I t i s a ready t o o l for "segmenting" the market before quantitative research and predictions of the segments may be made. General Attitude T h eory 1 7 Attitudes may be thought of as enduring systems of p o s i t i v e or nega-t i v e evaluations, emotional f e e l i n g s and act i o n tendencies that the i n d i -v i d u a l acquires with respect to s o c i a l objects. An attitud e i s the par-t i c u l a r r e g u l a r i t y of an i n d i v i d u a l ' s f e e l i n g s , thoughts and pr e d i s p o s i -t i o n s to act toward some aspect of h i s environment. Feelings are known as the " a f f e c t i v e " component of an a t t i t u d e ; thoughts are the "cognitive" component; p r e d i s p o s i t i o n to act i s the "behavioural" component. Attitudes may be directed toward concrete objects or abstract e n t i t i e s . They can 16 Krech, C r u t c h f i e l d and Ballachey, Individual In Society, p. 139. .17 Ibid. , chapter 5 and Secord and Backman, S o c i a l Psychology, chapter 3. 13 be remote or personal. The a f f e c t i v e component of an at t i t u d e i s the sum of the emotional responses the i n d i v i d u a l f e e l s towards an object. The q u a l i t y "of emo-t i o n a l response may be p o s i t i v e or negative. The i n d i v i d u a l f e e l s a l i k i n g or a d i s l i k e towards an object. He may also f e e l no emotional r e a c t i o n whatsoever. S o c i a l psychologists prefer to measure the a f f e c t i v e component of an a t t i t u d e with the use of valence signs. Plus for a p o s i t i v e a f f e c t , minus f or a negative a f f e c t and zero for no a f f e c t . A great d i f f i c u l t y resides i n the strength of valence measurement and we w i l l deal with measurement l a t e r i n the chapter. The cognitive component of an attitud e includes the b e l i e f s of i n d i -v iduals about the object and h i s evaluative perceptions of i t s r e l a t i o n s h i p to other b e l i e f s about other objects; i n other words, everything the i n d i -v i d u a l believes and knows about an object. A simple i l l u s t r a t i o n would be an apple. The i n d i v i d u a l perceives i t to be a c e r t a i n colour, a c e r t a i n shape. He knows i t to be a food and may believe i t i s an excellent way of "keeping the doctor away f o r a day"; i t has health implications. These are the cognitive components of the i n d i v i d u a l s a t t i t u d e towards an apple. Whether he l i k e s i t or not may be thought of as an a f f e c t i v e component of h i s a t t i t u d e to the apple. The behavioural component of an attitud e includes everything the i n d i v i d u a l might say or might do i n r e l a t i o n to the object. I t i s implied or l a t e n t behaviour as i t represents the p r e d i s p o s i t i o n to act towards the object. Since, as w i l l be pointed out l a t e r , a t t i t u d i n a l components tend to be i n t e r n a l l y consistent, the behavioural p r e d i s p o s i t i o n to act i s highly correlated to the a f f e c t i v e and cognitive stands of an at t i t u d e . 14 In r e l a t i o n to the above-mentioned apple, the i n d i v i d u a l may say he l i k e s apples. He thus indicates a p o s i t i v e a t t i t u d e to the apple. He may eat an apple. This, too, i s behaviour and imples that he has a p o s i t i v e pre-d i s p o s i t i o n towards eating apples. He may buy the apple from a store. This too i s behaviour i n r e l a t i o n to h i s a t t i t u d e towards apples. However, t h i s purchase r e f l e c t s another attitu d e or c l u s t e r of at t i t u d e s . It i n -volves a syndrome of attitudes i n c l u d i n g apples, stores, p r i c e s , services and many others, a l l r e v o l v i n g about a c e n t r a l core concerning the value placed by the i n d i v i d u a l upon aspects of h i s consumptive behaviour. "At t i t u d e " i s a very u s e f u l concept i n studying broad factors i n society that mould behaviour i n p a r t i c u l a r d i r e c t i o n s . Our concern i s to attempt to i s o l a t e those factors which a f f e c t consumptive behaviour espe-c i a l l y with regard to r e t a i l stores. An attitude can be seen to be a prep-ar a t i o n for behaviour. Nelson l i n k s attitudes and images when he states: "A composite of the attitudes which a group of people hold toward a product constitutes an image. " ^ Nelson has summed up the c e n t r a l core of t h i s paper and re i n f o r c e s Proposition I. Though the quotation speaks of product, i t can be seen, that the words " r e t a i l store" could e a s i l y be substituted. Theories of Attitude Organization Moving further into the concept of a t t i t u d e , the theory stresses consistency as the p r i n c i p l e organizing agent of the three elements of an a t t i t u d e . Since attitudes serve f u n c t i o n a l , a d j u s t i v e , expressive and knowledge ends, there appears to be a consistency both within the elements of a p a r t i c u l a r a t t i t u d e and between separate yet re l a t e d a t t i t u d e systems. 18 Bardin H. Nelson, "Seven P r i n c i p l e s i n Image Formation," Journal of  Marketing, v o l . 26, no. 1, Jan. 1962, p. 68. 15 The value system of the i n d i v i d u a l appears to be the p r i n c i p a l c a t a l y s t i n the s t r u c t u r i n g of a t t i t u d e s . Various theories have been advanced to explain t h i s consistency i n a t t i t u d e s . For our purposes the two most widely accepted theories should help i n understanding t h i s complex theo-r e t i c a l construct. Attitude Organization and Change: Rosenberg^ Rosenberg's i n t e r e s t i s i n the a f f e c t i v e and cognitive components of an a t t i t u d e . His studies demonstrated the presence of consistency between a f f e c t and cognition. He formulated the p r o p o s i t i o n that strong and stable p o s i t i v e a f f e c t towards a given object i s associated with b e l i e f s that i t leads to the attainment of a number of important values. Conversely, a strong negative a f f e c t should be associated with b e l i e f s that the object blocks the attainment of important values. The cognitive element of an a t t i t u d e r e a l l y contains the over-riding value elements of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s personality. The i n d i v i d u a l perceives the instrumentality of the object i n obtaining the value he finds consistent with hi s general value system. Thus h i s att i t u d e towards one object i s consistent i n value judgement with h i s attitudes towards other objects. Attitude change, according to Rosenberg, comes about when there i s a perceived inconsistency between a f f e c t and cognition. The inconsistency w i l l r e s u l t i n a change i n the valence sign of e i t h e r the a f f e c t i v e or cognitive component of an a t t i t u d e . An example might explain t h i s concept better. An i n d i v i d u a l might believe a p a r t i c u l a r store o f f e r s the best p r i c e on t e l e v i s i o n sets and buys h i s at t h i s store. Later on he learns .19 Milton J. Rosenberg, "An Analysis of Affective-Cognitive Consistency," Attitude Organization and Change, Yale Studies i n Attitude and Communica-t i o n , New Haven, Yale University Press, .1963, pp. 15-64. 16 that another store s e l l s the set at a lower p r i c e . E i t h e r he w i l l be emotionally upset and stop buying at the f i r s t store, therefore changing h i s a f f e c t sign from plus to minus, or he may perceive or believe that the second store has an extremely poor service department and l i t e r a l l y r a t i o n a l i z e h i s cognitions or b e l i e f s about that store. Whether t h i s i s true or not w i l l not be the issue. He must achieve consistency i n h i s a t t i t u d e i n some manner. A further example may be a person buying i n a store which he considers to cater to people i n h i s p a r t i c u l a r s o c i a l c l a s s . He f e e l s at home within the store and has both a p o s i t i v e a f f e c t and cognition about i t . Let us suppose that he learns that h i s friends or h i s s o c i a l group now shop at another store. He may begin now to notice that the people shopping i n t h i s store r e a l l y are not l i k e h i s s o c i a l group. He begins to perceive that they dress perhaps i n a l i t t l e l e s s s t y l i s h manner and that t h e i r behaviour i n the store i s not to h i s l i k i n g . U n t i l he learned h i s s o c i a l group were shopping elsewhere, these thoughts perhaps would not have occurred to him. The change i n cognition (his s o c i a l group shops e l s e -where) y i e l d s an inconsistence, and he therefore looks to change h i s a f f e c t and behaviour. He stops shopping at t h i s p a r t i c u l a r store and shops at the other. His a t t i t u d e change r e s u l t s i n new shopping behaviour and a change i n h i s store images. Rosenberg's theory i s of prime importance to the marketer. It sug-gests that the a t t i t u d e change process might be conceived of i n terms of the arousal and reduction of a f f e c t i v e - cognitive inconsistency. A marketer may be able to induce inconsistency i n either cognitions or a f f e c t towards a product or store. The Hudson's Bay study, quoted 17 e a r l i e r , 0 r e s u l t e d i n a more modern packaging and advertising campaign i n order to change consumers' perceptions of the company and i t s stores. The "Hudson's Bay Company" name was changed to the "Bay" i n a l l d i s p l a y s , packaging and advertising. A young, modern image was attempted. By chang-ing the cognitive valence sign of consumers who were attracted to youthful, l e s s t r a d i t i o n a l stores, from minus to plus the "Bay" hoped to gain a broader segment of i t s p o t e n t i a l market. Rosenberg also presents a schematic conception of attitudes and i t i s included here to help the reader p i c t u r e the hypothetical model more c l e a r l y . FIGURE I Measurable Independent Variables Intervening Variables Measurable Dependent Variables STIMULI Individuals Situations S o c i a l issues S o c i a l groups and other a t t i t u d e objects AFFECT - sympathetic nervous responses - verbal statements of a f f e c t ^ ATTITUDES COGNITION - perceptual responses - verbal statements of b e l i e f s BEHAVIOUR - overt actions - verbal statements concerning behaviour Figure I Schematic Conception of Attitudes 21 20 Image Research Inc., op. c i t . 2.1 Rosenberg, op. c i t . , p. 3. 18 Theory of Cognitive Dissonance: F e s t i n g e r ^ Leon Festinger has formulated a theory of attitude which stresses the consistency between what a person knows or believes (cognitions) and what he does (behaviour). Consistency, i n h i s theory, i s c a l l e d conso-nance, while inconsistency i s c a l l e d dissonance. He believes the human organism has to e s t a b l i s h i n t e r n a l harmony, consistency between h i s a t t i -tudes and within h i s a t t i t u d e s , and e s p e c i a l l y consistency between cogni-t i o n s and overt behaviour. Festinger presents two hypotheses:^ " I . The existence of dissonance, being p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y uncom-f o r t a b l e , w i l l motivate the person to t r y to reduce the dissonance and achieve consonance. II. When dissonance i s present, i n addition to t r y i n g to reduce i t , the person w i l l a c t i v e l y avoid s i t u a t i o n s and information l i k e l y to increase the dissonance." Since dissonance w i l l i n e v i t a b l y a r i s e a f t e r a de c i s i o n has been made between two or more a l t e r n a t i v e s , then the cognition that the rejected a l t e r n a t i v e s had some p o s i t i v e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and the cognition that the chosen a l t e r n a t i v e had some negative c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s w i l l doubtless lead to some cognitive dissonance. The i n d i v i d u a l i s then motivated to reduce the dissonance i n whatever ways he can. He may search out opinions from others, read a r t i c l e s i n magazines and newspapers i n order to r e i n f o r c e h i s d ecision. He may seek out information which w i l l help him to substan-t i a t e h i s r e j e c t i o n of other a l t e r n a t i v e s . In a l l cases he s t r i v e s to reduce dissonance and perhaps may even change behaviour to do so. A good example i s the heavy cigarette smoker, who, on reading a r t i c l e s which showed how detrimental cigarettes were to health, decided to give up read-ing. Exaggerated, perhaps, but a f i n e example of the reduction of 22 Festinger, op. c i t . 23 I b i d . , p. 3. 19 24 dissonance. Bruce S t r a i t s , i n an a r t i c l e i n the Journal of M a r k e t i n g , ^ analyzes consumers a f t e r they have made a purchase i n order to apply F e s t i n g e r T s theory to marketing. To the marketing manager, the importance of the theory i s not whether dissonance i s present or has been reduced, but rather the possible e f f e c t s on subsequent purchases. S t r a i t s presents an analysis of four cars i n the following manner: FIGURE II Price Style Economy Roominess Popularity Performance Car A + + + + + Car B + + + Car C Car D + + + + + + I t i s apparent that t h i s valence r a t i n g of the four a l t e r n a t i v e s by an i n d i v i d u a l buyer w i l l lead him to buy Car A. However, the magnitude of the valence signs i s not given. I f "roominess" i s of more importance to the buyer than the other f a c t o r s , then he w i l l choose Car C or Car D. Festinger indicated that the magnitide of post d e c i s i o n dissonance i s an increasing function both of the decision and of the r e l a t i v e attractiveness of the unchosen a l t e r n a t i v e s . He also considered s o c i a l support as a means of reducing dissonance. 2 6 The buyer of Car A, a f t e r the purchase, 24 S t r a i t s , op. c i t . , p. 63. 25 Festinger, op. c i t . , p. 262. 26 Ibid. , p. .177. 20 w i l l tend to seek s o c i a l support as well as reading a r t i c l e s or other sources to reduce the dissonance a r i s i n g from h i s r e j e c t i o n s of the other cars. He may avoid information which w i l l stress the roominess of other cars or may r a t i o n a l i z e that roominess i s r e a l l y unimportant i n cars. I f , however, he f a i l s to reduce dissonance, the p r o b a b i l i t y of buying Car A again w i l l be lessened. And so i t applies to other products. S t r a i t s f e e l s that i t i s , however, d i f f i c u l t to measure dissonance and that the best measure may be to allow the purchaser to evaluate new Information presented him, and to i n t e r p r e t the r e s u l t s based on the knowledge of what the In d i v i d u a l already has purchased. Such a measure of dissonance, at best, i s highly subjective and could lead to biased conclusions. It appears to be inadequate as an a n a l y t i c a l t o o l of measurement. The Measurement of Attitudes Many of the measurement techniques evolved by s o c i a l psychologists for a t t i t u d e measurement stress the " a f f e c t " component of an at t i t u d e and as such are not adequate for the purposes of measuring r e t a i l store at t i t u d e s or images which, though they contain " a f f e c t " components, are more i n the area of the cognitive elements of att i t u d e s . 27 Thurstone-type Scale This technique measures attitudes towards s o c i a l objects by the use of a seri e s of statements to which the respondent i s asked to agree or disagree. Each statement has a previously assigned scale value depending upon i t s strength of p o s i t i v e or negative valence. A r e s u l t i n g score 27 L. L. Thurstone and E. J. Chave, The Measurement of At t i t u d e s , Chicago University Press, 1929, pp. 37-41. 21 determines the strength of the respondent's a t t i t u d e . Likert-Type S c a l e 2 8 Here, a set of judges choose one of f i v e possible responses to each item - strongly agree, agree, undecided, disagree, strongly disagree. This i s done i n order to achieve an i n t e r n a l consistency within the items. A scale i s then prepared and respondents tested. I t i s s i m i l a r to the "semantic d i f f e r e n t i a l " used by many researchers i n r e t a i l store image studies. A r e a l problem of the placement of responses i n encountered. Many people are lo a t h to take strong stands by choosing outside answers (e.g. strongly agree or strongly disagree) and do not r e v e a l t h e i r a t t i -tude d i r e c t l y . Free-Response Method This method appears best f o r getting a d e s c r i p t i o n of the cognitive content of an a t t i t u d e . It i s therefore highly u s e f u l i n store image studies. The respondent i s free to answer questions i n h i s own words and the researcher comes away from the interview with meaningful data about att i t u d e s . Though the data i s not q u a n t i t a t i v e , i t does y i e l d a r i c h source of a t t i t u d e information and may lead to p o s i t i v e conclusions, e s p e c i a l l y i f a wide range of consumers i s canvassed. A seri e s of open-end questions i s also a prime t o o l of the f r e e -response researcher. The v a r i e t y of ways i n which an i n d i v i d u a l may reply to these questions brings out an extensive attitu d e content. Also, these r e p l i e s may suggest r e l a t i o n s between d i f f e r e n t attitudes and between atti t u d e s and personality. 28 Rensis L i k e r t , "A Technique for the Measurement of Attitudes," Archives of Psychology, 1932, no. .140. 22 The problem i n the free-response method l i e s i n the s k i l l of the interviewer i n i n t e r p r e t i n g the responses to the questions asked and determining what the structure of the attitude i s , based on these responses. Also, the questions themselves must be c a r e f u l l y constructed i n order to e l i c i t the free response answer. In examining r e t a i l store image, the questions must be worded i n such a way as to e l i c i t responses which help to measure the general image i n the relevant population. As stated i n Proposition I I , there should be a r e l a t i v e l y uniform image or attitude held by a s i g n i f i c a n t l y large pro-p o r t i o n of those within a given group. The r e a l problem l i e s i n the str u c t u r i n g of the groups. The researcher must segment the population into homogeneous groups. Some assessment must be made as to how groups 29 divide. Warner's Chicago Tribune Studies showed a break-down of f i v e c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s : upper c l a s s , upper-middle c l a s s , lower-middle c l a s s , upper-lower cl a s s and lower-lower class. An image researcher could meas-ure store' image based on Warner's c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s and t e s t whether or not a uniform image was prevalent for each store among the various socio-economic groups. The problem of reference groups i s a r e a l l i m i t a t i o n of the Warner-type c l a s s i f i c a t i o n . I t w i l l be examined i n Chapter III. Summary Attitude theory helps explain the predispositions people f e e l towards s o c i a l objects. E s p e c i a l l y important i s the knowledge that attitudes are rather stable and enduring but that they can be changed by new percep-tions and communications. P o s i t i v e attitudes towards a corporation, a product, a brand or a r e t a i l store are important guides for purchasing. 29 Cited i n Jerome McCarthy, Basic Marketing, Homewood I l l i n o i s , Richard D. Irwin, 1964, p. 251. 23 Rosenberg's schematic diagram shows how i n d i v i d u a l attitudes a r i s e from the influence of s o c i a l groups, s i t u a t i o n s , s o c i a l issues and other s t i m u l i . But once formed, attitudes tend to r e s i s t change. To the r e t a i l store, the attitudes of the relevant market to the store are highly important to i t s sales volume. The p r e d i s p o s i t i o n con-sumers f e e l to buy or not to buy i n the store are v i t a l to i t s r e t a i l sales. And t h i s p r e d i s p o s i t i o n i s a measure of the a t t i t u d e consumers hold towards the store. To state, at t h i s point, that when we speak of store "image" we speak of attitudes held, i s perhaps premature. Careful analysis of a t t i t u d e theory does lead to the conclusion that there i s a r e l a t i o n s h i p between the hypothetical " a t t i t u d e " and the hypothetical "image". I t w i l l be shown that "image" i s but a symbol of a t t i t u d e . I t i s a convenient.means of summarizing an a t t i t u d e . It i s not far removed from the concept of "stereotype". Stereotypes are formed by human beings as s i m p l i f i c a t i o n s from a complex r e a l i t y . Perceptions of objects and r e l a t i o n s h i p s from the environment are modified by the i n d i v i d u a l ' s 30 value system. Walter Lippman c a l l s them "pictures i n our heads". They are bases for behaviour and though, since they are modified by the p r e j -udices of the i n d i v i d u a l , they become r e a l i t y to the i n d i v i d u a l and evoke behavioural responses, they are not always r e l a t e d to r e a l i t y but more often to the "stereotypes". People form stereotypes about races, s o c i a l groups and also about corporations, products, brands and stores. I t i s quite easy to see the r e l a t i o n s h i p between "stereotype" and "image". 30 Walter Lippman, Public Opinion, New York, Pelican Books, .1946, chapter .1, c i t e d i n Edward L. Brink and William T. Kelley, The Management  of Promotion, Englewood C l i f f s , P r e n t i c e - H a l l , .1963, p. 155. 24 Both are perceived, yet perhaps d i s t o r t e d , mental pictures of simple structure i n order to sum up the complex r e a l i t y . Stereotype and image r e a l l y are the summation of an i n d i v i d u a l ' s a t t i t u d e . He sorts out his attitudes about stores by forming images, p o s i t i v e , negative and i n d i f f e r e n t (no image). He uses these images i n order to guide h i s consumption habits. He moves to stores which possess a p o s i t i v e Image for him. He avoids negative image stores. He may ex-plore an unknown store i n order to e s t a b l i s h an attitude towards i t and construct an image. Yet he does not do t h i s alone. He does t h i s by phys-i c a l encounter with the store, i t s stock, i t s sales-people, i t s advertis-ing, i t s other customers; a l l tempered by h i s value system which modifies h i s perceptions to f i t h i s a t t i t u d i n a l set. He constructs a c l e a r l y marked map of preference i n order to choose the p a r t i c u l a r store where he w i l l purchase h i s requirements. The images he constructs help him make t h i s choice rather quickly and he w i l l tend to follow h i s image map as he proceeds to buy i n r e t a i l stores, p r e f e r r i n g the strong, p o s i t i v e image to the strong, negative image. A hierarchy of image value i s constructed and a choice i s made on the basis of the highest p o s i t i v e image. 25 CHAPTER III THE DETERMINANTS OF STORE IMAGE Since, i n t h i s paper, an attempt i s being made to l i n k the concept of "image" with the concept of " a t t i t u d e " i t i s important at t h i s point to analyze what are the determinants of an i n d i v i d u a l ' s store image. What fa c t o r s are at work i n shaping h i s at t i t u d e towards a p a r t i c u l a r store and how does he d i f f e r e n t i a t e one store from another? The analysis w i l l be attempted under three major headings: func-t i o n a l q u a l i t i e s , psychological a t t r i b u t e s and s o c i o l o g i c a l a t t r i b u t e s . I t w i l l be seen that the f i r s t two headings deal p r i m a r i l y with shopping experience which can be thought of as d i r e c t perceptions and encounter as well as i n d i r e c t experience or i n d i r e c t perceptions, i . e . , advertising messages, package recognition, and other i n d i r e c t encounters. Sociolog-i c a l a t t r i b u t e s may be thought of as intervening v a r i a b l e s . They condi-t i o n the perceptions of the store and may d i s t o r t the valence r a t i n g s of the actual experience with the store. Functional Q u a l i t i e s Included under t h i s heading would be store l o c a t i o n , ease of parking, store hours, layout and d i s p l a y , p r i c e and q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n s h i p s , depth and width of stock assortments and services such as c r e d i t , d e l i v e r y , r e s t rooms and restaurants. Store Location and Parking Where the store i s located i s c e r t a i n l y one very important determi-nant of store image. I f i t i s within easy access to the consumer, i t w i l l 26 possess a higher valence i n the area of convenience. A neighbourhood s p e c i a l i t y store, supermarket or department store w i l l a t t r a c t the house-wife whose near proximity w i l l save her time i n shopping since she w i l l be able to shop i n the stores without l o s i n g valuable time getting there. Also, i f the store i s located together with other stores at which she shops, t h i s too w i l l a t t r a c t her p o s i t i v e l y to the store. (A note of caution must be inserted here. Since a l l the determinants being discussed i n t h i s chapter a f f e c t the store image, i t i s important to note that the image i s a composite of a l l these factors and though l o c a t i o n may be p o s i t i v e , i t may be o f f s e t by other determinants being discussed.) The trend to suburban l i v i n g and the growth of shopping centres has been a strong force i n changing consumers' store "images". Jonassen has pointed out c l e a r l y the advantages and disadvantages of the stores i n the 31 downtown and i n shopping centres. One of the most important shopping-centre advantages i s the nearness to home. Parking, too, i s a r e a l advantage of the shopping-centre and again must a f f e c t store "image". The problem of parking near the store she prefers i s a r e a l determinant of store image. The store, situated i n a shopping-centre, has the advantage, generally, of ease of parking for the consumer. Shopping-centres are t y p i c a l l y set up with large parking areas. Another determinant associated with parking i s that of t r a f f i c l e v e l s . Generally i t i s f a r easier and l e s s f r u s t r a t i n g to the consumer to get to the shopping centre or neighbourhood store i n h i s or her car. In many cases, i t i s a short walk from home. The store that i s located near large parking areas i s c l e a r l y at an advantage over those whose customers 31 C. T. Jonassen, The Shopping Center Versus Downtown, Bureau of Business Research, Ohio State University, Columbus Ohio, 1955. 27 are unable to park near the store or must c i r c l e through heavy t r a f f i c before f i n d i n g a parking place for t h e i r cars. Of course, rapid t r a n s i t has helped overcome parking problems. In Toronto, the subway moves d i r e c t l y under the T. Eaton Co.'s store and the Robert Simpson Co.'s store. Shoppers may get o f f the subway and proceed into e i t h e r store d i r e c t l y . Montreal's new subway system which empties d i r e c t l y into the downtown area, also w i l l be a strong force i n changing consumers' att i t u d e s towards many of the stores i n the downtown area. In Vancouver, major department stores have b u i l t t h e i r own parking l o t s i n order to o f f s e t the parking problem. Store l o c a t i o n and parking do a f f e c t the attitudes of consumers, e s p e c i a l l y i n the perception of ease of shopping and a f f e c t other attitudes which involve the value of time spent i n shopping as against other a c t i v -i t i e s the consumer engages i n . Another associated determinant, as pointed out by Jonassen, i s the 32 influence of children. Going to downtown areas with small c h i l d r e n can be a rather harrowing experience. The crowds, the large stores, the bore-dom experienced by c h i l d r e n while t h e i r mothers and fathers shop, can c e r t a i n l y a f f e c t the valence sign of the determinant of store l o c a t i o n . Store Hours The convenience of store hours i s another determinant of store image. Again, we must deal with downtown as against shopping centres. Shopping centres usually open more nights and often stay open l a t e r on normal d a y s . 3 3 32 I b i d . , pp. 18-30. 33 Woodward's Oakridge Centre, Brentwood Shopping Centre, Vancouver, B.C., open 9:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m. Downtown stores open 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. / 28 In shopping for durable goods, generally the husband and wife are involved and shop together. Often, they may be able to shop on the husband's day o f f , but frequently, night shopping allows them to go to-gether. Grocery shopping, too, may be a j o i n t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the parents. Sunday shopping at supermarkets has a p o s i t i v e valence for many fa m i l i e s . Layout and Display The p h y s i c a l layout and display of a store can be a strong determi-nant of store image. A t t r a c t i v e store fronts and display windows may a f f e c t the attitude of the consumer p o s i t i v e l y . Though the consumer may not enter the store, the image i s p o s i t i v e l y or negatively affected. E s p e c i a l l y the s t y l e of both p h y s i c a l decor and merchandise of f e r i n g s i n display are perceived by the consumer. He or she notes the design of the ph y s i c a l f r o n t , the s t y l e of the inside furnishings, and the q u a l i t y of the merchandise displays. This i s r e a d i l y seen i n the use of a t t r a c t i v e f u r n i t u r e f o r display i n windows of high q u a l i t y women's s p e c i a l t y stores. The f u r n i t u r e may serve no fu n c t i o n a l end but does convey by i t s s t y l e , a f e e l i n g of q u a l i t y which adds to the s t y l e of the store's merchandise and Image. Physical layout of departments within the store i s another determi-nant of store image. Ease of a c c e s s i b i l i t y to various types of merchandise i s v i t a l i n pr o j e c t i n g a p o s i t i v e image f or the store. Information centres do help i n promoting a p o s i t i v e image and are a v i t a l need i n a store with many departments. I t i s indeed a f r u s t r a t i n g experience and perhaps a los s of valuable time to have to seek out merchandise which i s not c l e a r l y v i s i b l e . Cash r e g i s t e r l o c a t i o n s and t h e i r number also a f f e c t store image. 29 The problems involved i n seeking out a place to pay for merchandise may v i t a l l y a f f e c t store image. Also, i f the line-ups of r e g i s t e r s are long, many consumers may be discouraged from shopping at the store. Price and Quality Relationships Depending upon the income of the consumer, h i s economic valuation as well as s o c i o l o g i c a l group influences on h i s consumptive h a b i t s , p r i c e and q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n s h i p s must a f f e c t h i s image of the store. The economically " r a t i o n a l " consumer may s t i l l e x i s t , but i n most instances other factors than p r i c e alone are involved i n consumptive be-haviour. P r i c e , to a great degree, s t i l l influences the consumer but the " p r i c e " involves much more than the d o l l a r value of the product. It involves the type of package, the type of store, the d e l i v e r y or service as well as other factors being mentioned i n t h i s discussion of image deter-minants. Rich and P o r t i s found that high fashion appeal was becoming more important than p r i c e appeal e s p e c i a l l y i n non-standardized product l i n e s i n department stores. They found that discount stores presented the 34 strongest " p r i c e " image. Store image i s c e r t a i n l y conditioned by p r i c e and q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n -ships. A store whose q u a l i t y image i s accepted w i l l f i n d p r i c e alone i s not as important a factor as i t might be for lower q u a l i t y stores. Con-sumers perceive p r i c e - q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n s h i p s amongst the d i f f e r e n t stores they v i s i t . Income and p r i c e must of course be r e l a t e d although, as w i l l be pointed out l a t e r , reference group influence may well o f f s e t lower income i n d i v i d u a l ' s store image and may lead them to buy l i t e r a l l y "over t h e i r heads". 34 Stuart Rich and B. D. P o r t i s , "Clues for Action From Shopper Preference," Harvard Business Review, March-April, 1963, pp. 132-149. 30 Quality of merchandise and dependability of the store appear to go hand i n hand. An image of q u a l i t y merchandise i s often associated with store dependability. Festinger's theory of cognitive dissonance can be used to explain why many i n d i v i d u a l s shop q u a l i t y , high priced stores a f t e r they have purchased i n lower pr i c e d stores. They are l i t e r a l l y seeking to r e i n f o r c e t h e i r purchase by f i n d i n g s i m i l a r merchandise, much higher p r i c e d i n other stores. That the s i m i l a r i t y may be more f i c t i o n a l than r e a l , often eludes them for they are seeking s i m i l a r i t y so that they can o f f s e t the negative aspects of t h e i r previous purchase. Depth and Width of Assortment Although a shopper may only need to buy one item, most shoppers prefer a width of assortment so as to s a t i s f y t h e i r need to be able to make a "good" choice. Shown twenty l a d i e s ' dresses i n a s p e c i a l t y store, a customer, who only needs one, w i l l probably seek a store which has a wider range of s t y l e and p r i c e l i n e s . With our a f f l u e n t society has come an increasing i n t e r e s t i n s t y l e and fashion. The store which stresses fashion and in t e r p r e t s i t through a wide range of choice of current fasionable s t y l e s at varying p r i c e l i n e s , w i l l tend to b u i l d a strong fashion image. Of course, there i s a l i m i t . Sometimes the question of choice may r e s u l t i n confusion e s p e c i a l l y i f the width of assortment i s too great. Trained salespeople can p o s s i -bly overcome t h i s disadvantage of choice from too many, by d i r e c t i n g the customer to the items which may s a t i s f y h i s or her needs. Depth of assortment also helps determine image. A customer who wants a blue s h i r t , s i z e sixteen with a t h i r t y - t h r e e inch sleeve length would be somewhat disgruntled to f i n d a l l sizes but h i s . Out of stock p o s i t i o n s can be 3.1 very c o s t l y to a r e t a i l store and can promote a negative valence i n the image for that store. Fashion, as a means of p o s i t i v e image b u i l d i n g for department stores has become more important i n recent years since a majority of the depart-ment stores' customers are women. Rich and Por t i s found that: "Downtown department stores which present a fashion image are undoubtedly i n the strongest p o s i t i o n . . . "35 They found that a fashion-image store, though located downtown, had a strong following among suburbanites who were s t i l l w i l l i n g to come down-town to shop when buying fashion merchandise. I t can be seen that the negative valence of poor parking and heavy t r a f f i c can be overcome by the strong p o s i t i v e valence of fashion for groups of consumers. Also, the authors found that many young, career women work downtown and these women are high fashion conscious. Here, then i s the ju x t a - p o s i t i o n of q u a l i t y and assortment. Given good q u a l i t y merchandise a store whose fashion'presentation i s l i m i t e d , may s u f f e r competitive losses to a store whose breadth of assortment includes a wide range of current fashions. The main appeal of the s p e c i a l t y fashion stores i s to those who are fashion conscious and who can f i n d exclusive fashions i n these stores. The s p e c i a l t y store can concentrate on narrower ranges, e s p e c i a l l y i n pri c e l i n e s , and can stock a deeper assortment of merchandise i n p a r t i c u -l a r areas than can most broad-appeal department stores. Store Services With the complexity of modern l i f e has come an increase i n consumers' 35 Stuart Rich and B. D. P o r t i s , "The Imageries of Department Stores," Journal of Marketing, v o l . 28, no. 2, A p r i l 1964, p. 15. s h i f t i n g of problems to the r e t a i l store. E s p e c i a l l y i n the areas of c r e d i t and d e l i v e r y i s t h i s apparent. The store that can provide easy access to c r e d i t f o r i t s customers, enhances t h i s aspect of i t s image. The charge plate has eliminated much of the delay i n cred i t - g r a n t i n g and has saved valuable time for the con-sumer. The charge plate serves too as a t r i g g e r i n g cue for store selec-t i o n . I t i s far simpler to buy at a store on c r e d i t with a charge plate than to go through a c r e d i t interview with new stores. Delivery service i s also a strong image-building determinant. Stuart Rich found that women preferred to shop i n stores which could d e l i v e r t h e i r purchases. He found that to many consumers, mail orders and telephone orders were prime image determinants. Again, t h i s r e f l e c t s the tendency for consumers to pass on to the store many of the functions they formerly undertook themselves. E s p e c i a l l y i n the higher s o c i a l classes i s such behaviour apparent. I t would be considered i n poor taste by some, to carry parcels home. Rather, the store should d e l i v e r these. Other determinants i n the realm of store services would be wash-room f a c i l i t i e s , restaurants or nearness to restaurants, cheque-cashing espe-c i a l l y f o r the working man and f i n a l l y p o s t - o f f i c e f a c i l i t i e s and g i f t wrapping. A l l add to the image when found i n a store and l a t e l y there has even been a trend to serving coffee to customers i n better l a d i e s s p e c i a l t y stores. Psychological A t t r i b u t e s Another group of determinants which a f f e c t store image are those 36 Stuart Rich, Shopping Behaviour of Department Store Customers, Boston, Harvard University Press, 1963, p. 96. 33 which involve the p e r s o n a l i t y of the i n d i v i d u a l , h i s value system and the d i r e c t and i n d i r e c t encounter with elements of the store. Character of Sales Personnel The i n d i v i d u a l consumer's.reaction to the sales personnel i n a par-t i c u l a r store i s a strong determinant to his t o t a l r e a c t i o n to the store. The consumer's value system and personality help to shape the nature of h i s or her encounters with sales people. One important area i s that of f r i e n d l i n e s s . The consumer may f e e l that a c l e r k i s not g i v i n g enough atte n t i o n to h i s or her needs, even though that c l e r k i s busy with another customer. The consumer may believe that a l l c l e r k s i n the store are imper-sonal without having further, experience with other sales personnel i n the store. A consumer who i s greeted warmly and i s helped i n making a pur-chasing d e c i s i o n by a p a r t i c u l a r c l e r k , may walk out of the store con-vinced that t h i s i s a " f r i e n d l y " store and r e t a i n a p o s i t i v e image of the store i n t h i s area. The manner i n which complaints, returns, and adjustments are handled also a f f e c t the store image. Ease of r e t u r n can be a strong factor i n b u i l d i n g a strong store image. Consumers are t y p i c a l l y uncomfortable when making a return or getting an adjustment on merchandise. I f the t r a n s a c t i o n i s handled i n a manner which i s not embarrassing, the image can only be enhanced. Packaging The store box or bag i s another determinant of store image. The s t y l e of the package, i t s colouring, the symbol used for i d e n t i f i c a t i o n , a l l contribute towards store image. The Image Research Study, mentioned 34 e a r l i e r , 3 7 led to the Hudson's Bay Co. redesigning i t s boxes and bags using a mystical symbol of gold on a white background. The box or bag became r e a d i l y i d e n t i f i a b l e as against the grey box and bag used e a r l i e r . Here i s an example of an appeal to style-conscious, younger consumers, for the box and bag were aimed at giving an image of s t y l e and newness as i t was c a r r i e d out of the store by customers. It was hoped that consumers would change t h e i r image of the Bay from one of a long established, t r a d i -t i o n a l store to one of a modern, forward-looking store. Since the box and bag are a key to i d e n t i f y i n g the merchandise handled by the store, they become an important cue to shoppers as to the s t y l i n g to be found i n the store. Also, the boxes and bags are c a r r i e d by them and i f they see many, they begin to think of the store as being busy and a t t r a c t i n g many customers. When the box and bag are unexciting, they are not i d e n t i f i e d as r e a d i l y and do not convey the idea of a busy, a t t r a c t i v e store. A " f l a s h y " box and bag may, however, have the opposite e f f e c t . They may convey a sense of poor taste and i r r i t a t i o n to c e r t a i n consumer groups. The store must decide on what groups i t i s appealing to before decisions on packaging should be made. Advertising Tone The image of a p a r t i c u l a r store may be b u i l t i n consumers' minds merely by the tone of the advertising messages. Given a wealth of adver-t i s i n g cues i n newspapers, radio and t e l e v i s i o n , consumers i d e n t i f y a store p a r t l y by the type of messages that are presented. A store which uses a p r i c e appeal constantly i n i t s a d v e r t i s i n g , w i l l 37 Image Research Inc., op. c i t . 35 be thought of as a " p r i c e " store and w i l l a t t r a c t consumers who value p r i c e highly i n t h e i r purchasing decisions. A store which stresses s t y l e and fashion i n i t s ad v e r t i s i n g w i l l hopefully gain a fashion image. Since consumers i n an a f f l u e n t society tend to place high stress on fashion, and are extremely s t y l e conscious, a r e t a i l store should t a i l o r i t s a d v e r t i s i n g to r e i n f o r c e a fashion image. In homogeneous goods, p r i c e w i l l become a more important v a r i a b l e and here the store may aim at a pri c e - o r i e n t e d message to gain the consumer's patronage. E s p e c i a l l y i n convenience goods and durable shopping goods i s p r i c e an important consideration. The consistency of the ad v e r t i s i n g message w i l l become important i n b u i l d i n g a consistent a t t i t u d e to the store and therefore a consistent store image. Woodwards Stores Ltd. of Vancouver, B.C., use the words "nice department store" and "family store" c o n s i s t e n t l y i n t h e i r adver-t i s i n g . The appeal i s to a broad segment of the population and these words help to convey the aura of the store to consumers. Of course, such consistency should continue i n the store i t s e l f f o r i f consumers f i n d an unfriendly a t t i t u d e by sales personnel, the advertising message w i l l become an i r r i t a n t rather than a shopping cue. Since consistency i s an organizing p r i n c i p l e i n a t t i t u d e formation, the b u i l d i n g of a p o s i t i v e attitude to the store must be done by consis-tency i n a l l the determinants of store a t t i t u d e . The perception of adve r t i s i n g tone must be reinf o r c e d within the store i n order to form a p o s i t i v e a t t i t u d e . There i s no question that a l l the determinants men-tioned i n t h i s analysis must be of a consistent pattern i n order to evoke a strong, store image. 36 S t y l i n g of Merchandise S t y l i n g has already been dealt with i n previous sections, but i t must be recognized that the s t y l e of merchandise i s an e s s e n t i a l deter-minant of store image. The consumer i d e n t i f i e s her personality with a c e r t a i n s t y l e of dress, home furnishings and other outward means of per-son a l i t y expression through purchasing. She therefore i d e n t i f i e s strongly with a store whose merchandise expresses most c l e a r l y her own taste and w i l l form a favourable image towards those stores whose taste i s s i m i l a r to hers. A store whose s t y l i n g i s consistent throughout a l l departments w i l l therefore tend to a t t r a c t consumers who i d e n t i f y with the type of s t y l i n g presented by the store. A strong customer following w i l l r e s u l t , one which w i l l r e g u l a r l y choose to shop at t h i s store for p a r t i c u l a r needs. Where s t y l e and q u a l i t y are cons i s t e n t l y maintained, a strong attit u d e can only r e s u l t . Brooks Brothers of New York i s an i d e a l example of a store who has maintained a strong s t y l e and q u a l i t y image. One reason given f o r t h e i r success i s : "There's f e e l i n g of security when a shopper knows he can depend upon a store to carry the same q u a l i t y merchandise year i n and year out."^ 8 The store whose s t y l i n g v aries from department to department conveys a fuzzy image to i t s market. Perhaps some departments w i l l appeal to a group of consumers but the o v e r a l l store image w i l l be cognized as being rather unstructured and inconsistent. S o c i o l o g i c a l Determinants S o c i o l o g i c a l determinants such as group influences and status 38 Tom Mahoney, The Great Merchants, New York, Harper and Row, 1955, p. 45. 37 connotations, may be thought of as intervening variables f o r they act to d i s t o r t the perceptions of a store and i t s image. These are the variables which stores cannot control. They can co n t r o l the f u n c t i o n a l q u a l i t i e s and can influence greatly the psychological a t t r i b u t e s , but they have l i t t l e or no c o n t r o l over s o c i o l o g i c a l f a c t o r s . A l l they can do i s to understand them better and t a i l o r t h e i r e f f o r t s i n image-building to con-form with the s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the market. Group Influences Nelson, i n examining image formation, speaks of "reference points" which help human beings i n a complex society to make choices or judge-ments. He speaks of external reference points as being: " . . . s o c i a l influences, i n s t r u c t i o n , suggestion, group pressure and group p a r t i c i p a t i o n . " 3 ^ Consumers need reference points i n order to help them d i s t i n g u i s h between the many products and stores a v a i l a b l e for purchasing t h e i r con-sumptive needs. Group influences are c e r t a i n l y a force i n helping the consumer b u i l d h i s attitudes towards products and stores. a. Primary Groups Included i n t h i s s u b - t i t l e would be the family group, the work group and close f r i e n d s and associates. The family c e r t a i n l y helps mould an i n d i v i d u a l ' s l i k e s and d i s l i k e s i n a l l areas, as well as i n the choice of stores at which to shop. The a f f e c t component of the store a t t i t u d e w i l l be strongly influenced by the family. Children w i l l form attitudes toward stores that r e f l e c t t h e i r parents' a t t i t u d e s . These a t t i t u d e s , i n the early years, w i l l be emo-t i o n a l i n nature. As the c h i l d grows up, he may perceive that there i s 39 Nelson, op. c i t . , p. 69. an inconsistency between h i s a f f e c t and cognitive elements of the a t t i -tude towards a given store. He may change his a f f e c t component, or he may t a i l o r h i s cognitions to be consistent with h i s a f f e c t . A store's image may be perceived e n t i r e l y d i f f e r e n t l y than that which the store intends, because of the family influence. The work group, too, may help condition an i n d i v i d u a l ' s attitudes to p a r t i c u l a r stores. His adoption of the group norms of those he works with w i l l tend to change his store attitudes and images e s p e c i a l l y where the group i s i n t e r n a l l y strong. Friends and associates are another influence upon the i n d i v i d u a l i n the formation and change of attitudes. Veblen presented the t h e s i s that economic consumption i s not only motivated by i n t r i n s i c needs but also by prestige s e e k i n g . ^ "Conspicuous consumption" i s the consumption by the l e i s u r e c l a s s at stores and f o r a r t i c l e s which friends and associates are made aware of and can r e a d i l y i d e n t i f y . This d i f f e r e n t i a t e s the i n d i v i d u a l between classes and i n a r e a l sense expresses h i s choice of s o c i a l class i d e n t i f i c a t i o n . b. S o c i a l Class In dealing with consumptive behaviour, the marketer i s concerned with aggregates of consumers either at a given time or over a period of time. Thus, he must examine the s o c i a l f a b r i c of the market about him i n order to s t r a t i f y , by some means, the s o c i a l classes to which i n d i -v iduals belong. S o c i a l class exerts a strong influence on family behav-iour and helps to form a frame of reference from which the i n d i v i d u a l units sort out t h e i r own value systems and to which they r e l a t e t h e i r 40 Thorstein Veblen, Theory of the Leisure Class, New York, Viking, 1955. 39 a t t i t u d e s . S o c i a l class i s defined as: " . . . a group of i n d i v i d u a l s whose members are much a l i k e i n terms of c e r t a i n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s that d i s t i n g u i s h them from others i n society . . . . i n terms of wealth, occupation and education." We have already spoken e a r l i e r of Warner's s o c i a l classes and i t s a p p l i c a t i o n to consumptive behaviour. Proposition II extends the e f f e c t s of s o c i a l class norms applying to r e t a i l store image and p r e d i c t s that s o c i a l c l a s s groupings w i l l tend to cognize a p a r t i c u l a r store's image i n a r e l a t i v e l y uniform way. The problem of s o r t i n g s o c i a l classes i s however a r e a l one for i t i s further complicated by another s o c i o l o g i c a l concept; that of "reference group". c. Reference Group A s o c i o l o g i c a l concept which has r e s u l t e d from the rapid s o c i a l mobility of the Canadian and American s o c i a l structure i s that of reference group. No longer can s o c i a l c l a s s be thought of as the only frame of reference for family units or i n d i v i d u a l s for the a b i l i t y to move r a p i d l y between s o c i a l classes i n our society r e s u l t s i n a seeking to better one's p o s i t i o n or c l a s s and r e s u l t s i n an adoption of group norms l a r g e l y unrelated to s o c i a l class both by f a m i l i e s and by i n d i v i d -uals. Reference group may be defined as: " . . . that group whose outlook i s used by the actor as the frame of reference of h i s perceptual f i e l d . " ^ 2 C l e a r l y , reference group may be a prime determinant i n the 41 Kenneth R. David, Marketing Management, New York, Ronald Press, 1966, p. 230. 42 Tamotsu Shibutani, "Reference Groups as Perspectives," Marketing  and the Behavioural Sciences, ed. Perry B l i s s , Boston, A l l y n and Bacon, 1963, p. 226. i n d i v i d u a l ' s adoption of h i s s o c i a l r o l e . Like an actor, he assumes the r o l e which serves to gain him status within a s o c i a l group. This r o l e highly a f f e c t s h i s behaviour and also tends to influence h i s per-ceptions. S o c i a l c l a s s , to some, may determine the character of s o c i a l r o l e s , but to others, reference groups may provide the company i n which these r o l e s are to be played. Reference groups therefore help to order the view of one's world; one's perspective. They may not be r e l a t e d to the s o c i a l class that an i n d i v i d u a l may be measured i n when surveys are undertaken. Reference groups may influence the purchase of a product (conspicuous consumption) the choice of a p a r t i c u l a r brand, the choice of stores at which to shop and therefore store image. Reference groups a f f e c t attitudes and images and must be measured by the marketer i n surveying the attitudes of consumers when image studies are embarked on. The i n d i v i d u a l adopts the reference group perspective. He f e e l s he i s a r e a l member of t h i s group and though h i s wealth, occupation and education may not be up to the standards of the group, he i s aiming to move to the group i n his behaviour and i s highly motivated towards being accepted as a member of the group. The world of the reference group i s made known to the i n d i v i d u a l p a r t l y by commun-i c a t i o n channels. He reads of them, hears of them and wishes to belong. He attempts to move to a c u l t u r a l area which may be d i s s i m i l a r to h i s own and through e f f e c t i v e communication he begins to adopt the perspec-t i v e of the reference group. The Connotations of Status Another intervening v a r i a b l e which may d i s t o r t the store's attempts at image b u i l d i n g i s that of status. Status may be thought of as the 41 p o s i t i o n of prestige an i n d i v i d u a l holds within a group. I t i s a r e l a t i v e p o s i t i o n r e l a t i n g to a l l other members. I t defines how high i n the group's hierarchy the i n d i v i d u a l f e e l s he has r i s e n to or presently holds. The concept of status has great s i g n i f i c a n c e for store image studies. Pierre Martineau distinguishes between the "lower status" and the "upper status" shopper.^ 3 The former, he found, looks to the func-t i o n a l q u a l i t i e s of the store more d i r e c t l y . The store image for the lower status shopper r e f l e c t s her values of concreteness, p r a c t i c a l i t y and economy, the q u a l i t y of the merchandise and the dependability of the store. Conversely, the upper status shopper has a more symbolic meaning i n the store image. I t r e f l e c t s her own perceived status and her s t y l e of l i f e . The shopper, whether upper, middle or lower status, knows what to expect from a p a r t i c u l a r store by means of a preference map of images. Where the image i s heightened and sharp, the valence signs are very p o s i t i v e and very negative for the shopper. When, how-ever, the personality of the store i s d u l l and not c l e a r l y accentuated, the store merely becomes an a l t e r n a t i v e when the sharply defined stores do not have the products sought. Status implies that an i n d i v i d u a l has an image of himself or her-s e l f and t h i s image i s matched to the stores which the shopper encounters. The shopper seeks to match the image of h e r s e l f to the image of the store, and w i l l seek, preferably, the store whose image i s most congru-ent with the image she has of h e r s e l f . This implies that the c o n s i s t -ency i n the a f f e c t and cognitive components of atti t u d e extends to overt behaviour such as shopping. 43 Martineau, op. c i t . , p. 49. 42 One can imagine a shopper, when faced with the need for purchasing items, f i t t i n g stores into her planning, manipulating store images i n her mind and choosing those to which her attitudes are more favourable for solving her consumption problems. Store images are easy t o o l s for solving complex decisions. They act as reference tabs for f i l e s of complex determinants as experienced by the shopper. When the preference map i s being constructed, the connotations of status w i l l change the map to adapt i t to the status needs of the shopper. Summary The concept of store image b u i l d i n g has been dealt with i n t h i s chapter i n an attempt to i s o l a t e those factors which a f f e c t the store image preference map that i n d i v i d u a l s construct. Functional determi-nants of l o c a t i o n , parking, store hours, layout and d i s p l a y , p r i c e and q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n s h i p s , depth and width of assortment and store services have been examined. These are also c o n t r o l l a b l e by the r e t a i l e r . Psychological determinants are p a r t l y c o n t r o l l a b l e and include: char-acter of sales personnel, packaging, advertising tone, and s t y l e of merchandise. Though these l a t t e r v a r i a b l e s are c o n t r o l l a b l e , they may be conditioned by the psychological differences between i n d i v i d u a l s . The above determinants are then influenced greatly by intervening variable s of group influences: primary group, s o c i a l class and r e f e r -ence group. Status i s a further intervening v a r i a b l e that may serve to change the perceptions of store image. The intervening variables are uncontrollable by the r e t a i l e r . He must understand t h e i r e f f e c t s and attempt to measure them i n order to t a i l o r h i s c o n t r o l l a b l e e f f o r t s to match the s o c i o l o g i c a l segment of the market he i s attempting to capture. 43 To v i s u a l i z e better the determinants of store image, a hypothetical diagram i s presented. FIGURE I I I Determinants of Store Image Functional Determinants Psychological Determinants Location Parking Store Hours i s' "N °A R / ^e/ / I n d i v i d u a l ^ <°<s> \ Price and Qualityi Relationships —==} Depth and Width o Assortments i Store s i Image f \ Construct / ,<2. i Sales Personnel Packaging Advertising Style of Merchandise Store Services 44 CHAPTER IV FURTHER THEORETICAL CONSIDERATIONS In order to r e i n f o r c e the arguments presented i n e a r l i e r chapters, i t i s necessary at t h i s point to review some of the t h e o r e t i c a l explo-rat i o n s of the concept of image as presented i n recent publications. It w i l l be seen that the work of John Howard and Irving Crisp tends to follow, along s i m i l a r l i n e s , the propositions presented i n Chapter I and although the work to date i s highly t h e o r e t i c a l , i t i s hoped that methodology w i l l evolve to further substantiate the theory presented i n t h i s paper. I t i s not the purpose of t h i s t h e s i s to present a c l i n i c a l method of store "image" f i e l d study, but rather to point to the basic p r i n c i p l e s underlying the formation and perception of store image by the consumer. The f i n a l section of t h i s chapter w i l l deal with the theories of V i c t o r N. Vroom as presented i n "Work and M o t i v a t i o n " . ^ The i n c l u s i o n of Vroom i s to expand image theory by showing i t s r e l a t i o n s h i p to moti-v a t i o n a l research whether i n consumption, production or any other s o c i a l or economic a c t i v i t y . The concept of image i s r e l a t e d c l e a r l y to a l l the s o c i a l sciences and must emerge as an acceptable construct to a l l who work i n the f i e l d of human behaviour. The Howard Model In "Marketing Management", ^ John Howard presents a three phase 44 V i c t o r H. Vroom, Work and Motivation, New York, John Wiley, 1964, pp. 2-28. 45 John Howard, Marketing Management, Homewood I l l i n o i s , Richard D. Irwin, 1963, pp. 3.1-113. 45 model of buyer behaviour which he hopes w i l l be u s e f u l i n helping to explain consumer behaviour i n choosing from a l t e r n a t i v e products or brands. B u i l t upon learning theory, he evolves a stimulus-response model with three time dimensions: extensive problem solving (EPS) i n which the buyer i s being conditioned to choose from a maze of products and searches for sources of information extensively i n order to c l a r i f y h i s choice of product; l i m i t e d problem so l v i n g (LPS) i n which the buyer has now learned to narrow h i s choice of a l t e r n a t i v e s and where there i s a greater p r o b a b i l i t y that the buyer w i l l repeat the purchase of an a l t e r n a t i v e ; automatic response behaviour (ARB) i n which the buyer ceases to le a r n and often automatically chooses only one a l t e r n a t i v e whenever a buying stimulus i s present. The a p p l i c a t i o n of t h i s theory to store image i s apparent. Once the word "store" i s inserted i n place of "product" i n a l t e r n a t i v e s for choice, the theory i s s t i l l meaningful. Howard does not deal with image as such but implies i n the (ARB) stage that images do e x i s t which are strong and clear and allow the buyer to move automatically to a p a r t i c u l a r store when purchase needs a r i s e . Howard's behavioural equation i s stated as: B = P x D x K x V 4 6 where B i s response behaviour P i s the p r e d i s p o s i t i o n - the "inward" response tendency D i s the present drive l e v e l K i s the "incentive p o t e n t i a l " V i s the i n t e n s i t y of the cue For our purposes the "P" i s the e s s e n t i a l key to image for "P" represents the attitudes of the consumer towards stores that he has 46 I b i d . , p. 43. 46 formed over time. Howard defines a t t i t u d e as: " . . . the buyer's f e e l i n g f o r or against the brand. Howard's d e f i n i t i o n of at t i t u d e i s rather narrow for as we have seen, the concept of attitude has more components than merely " f e e l i n g " . Howard does deal with the topic of attitudes as predictors of behaviour. He implies that a t t i t u d e studies are most us e f u l for p r e d i c t i n g future purchases. He f e e l s that buyers plan future purchases and to do t h i s they store up information about products i n advance of purchasing. This statement r e i n f o r c e s Proposition I i n t h i s paper for the planning of s p e c i f i c product purchases may be compared to the "preference map" of store images that i s hypothesized i n Proposition I. In an e a r l i e r work, Howard deals more extensively with a t t i t u d e s . He says: "Attitudes are adaptive, cognitive acts which reduce tensions and help achieve goals. They are enduring predispositions f o r or against . . . . objects, people or events".^ 8 I t appears that t h i s statement i s the basis for the "P" factor i n h i s ultimate behavioural equation. Howard further elaborates on predis-p o s i t i o n ( a t t i t u d e s ) by hypothesizing that the amount of information seeking by a buyer i s : 49 " . . . inversely r e l a t e d to p r e d i s p o s i t i o n . . . " The buyer seeks l e s s information when h i s p r e d i s p o s i t i o n towards a product, brand or store i s high than when i t i s low. Howard also deals with sources of information, f i r s t l y from personal sources; s o c i a l 47 Ibid. , p. 50. 48 John Howard, Marketing: Executive and Buyer Behaviour, New York, Columbia University Press, 1963, p. 138. 49 Howard, op. c i t . , p. 58. 47 structure, primary groups and reference groups and secondly from imper-sonal sources; consumer guides, mass media, d i r e c t mail and shopping. Howard envisages a perceptual bias which i s explained by what he c a l l s the congruity p r i n c i p l e , that i s the congruity of i n d i v i d u a l a t t i t u d e s and behaviour. He f e e l s that incongruity causes dissonance (Festinger) and motivates the buyer to attempt to achieve consistency. Congruence of behaviour and class values r e s u l t s i n equilibrium and consistent behaviour. Howard's t h e o r e t i c a l treatment of buyer behaviour i s consistent with the theory presented i n t h i s paper. Though Howard deals with product and/or brand a l t e r n a t i v e s and we are dealing with r e t a i l store a l t e r n a -t i v e s , the consistency of the two treatments i s apparent. The "perceptive-bi a s " that Howard speaks of i s equivalent to the "intervening v a r i a b l e s " discussed" i n Chapter I I I , those of s o c i o l o g i c a l influences of groups and status c o n n o t a t i o n s . ^ The store "image" concept i s highly consistent with Howard's "P" i n h i s behavioural equation; the p r e d i s p o s i t i o n l a t e n t i n the i n d i v i d u a l whenever a stimulus occurs. Attitude Research i n Marketing: Crisp Perhaps the most extensive treatment of the r o l e of attitudes i n marketing i s presented by Irving Crisp i n an a r t i c l e dealing with a t t i -tude r e s e a r c h . ^ Although i n t h i s a r t i c l e Crisp deals with choices of products and brands, the i m p l i c a t i o n f or choices of stores appears to be l o g i c a l l y inherent i n h i s discussion. Crisp develops s i m i l a r l y the theory presented i n Chapter II of t h i s paper as regards attitude theory and makes the 51 Crisp, op. c i t . 48 point that the frame of reference to which a l l attitudes r e l a t e i s mean-i n g f u l only when we use the consumer's frame of reference, not the manu-. facturer's (or stores') frame of reference. He stresses the need i n a t t i t u d i n a l a n a l y s i s , "to i d e n t i f y and analyze the r e l a t i v e l y consistent ways of behaving that are c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of people . . . to a r r i v e at an 59 underlying structure to account for consistence". This quotation serves to s o l i d i f y the theory inherent i n Proposition II of t h i s paper that i t i s groups of people with s i m i l a r "images" or "a t t i t u d e s " towards stores that must be measured i n attitud e or image research. Individuals are important only when s i g n i f i c a n t groupings occur and must be examined as members of s p e c i f i c groups. Crisp does speak of "image research" which he f e e l s i s a s p e c i f i c type of attitud e research i n that i t involves i n v e s t i g a t i n g cognition  and frame of reference j o i n t l y . This i s i n l i n e with the research con-ducted by Rosenberg and the p r e d i c t i o n that the value system (frame of reference) of the i n d i v i d u a l i s a component of the cognitive element of at t i t u d e s , and i s a bias a f f e c t i n g perception. Crisp also deals with methods f o r conducting attit u d e research as regards consumer behaviour. Of p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t to him are experi-mental studies i n which variables are d e l i b e r a t e l y manipulated i n order to discover the extent of attitud e change accompanying the manipulation. In store image research t h i s could involve changing determinants of store image and measuring the r e s u l t a n t a t t i t u d e change. For instance, adver-t i s i n g tone could be one determinant that could be r e a d i l y manipulated. Packaging could be also changed i n an e f f o r t to determine the extent of attitude change. Of course the sample groups used, as indicated i n 52 Ibid. , p. 9 . 49 Proposition II of t h i s paper, would have to be s t r a t i f i e d into some pre-determined socio-economic l e v e l s i n order that the attitude change be measured within s p e c i f i c groups who tend to cognize the store i n a r e l a -t i v e l y uniform way. C r i s p , however, does not deal with t h i s problem of reference groups as a t t i t u d e reference anchorages. Crisp i s one of the few marketers to incorporate formal attitude theory d i r e c t l y into marketing research analysis. Some marketers have introduced some facets of a t t i t u d e theory without extensively recognizing the v a l i d i t y of the theory as a whole. Others have used a t t i t u d e theory without expressly d e f i n i n g the r e l a t i o n s h i p of a t t i t u d e theory to marketing.53 Crisp points to the importance of attitude analysis as an aid to the better understanding of consumer behaviour. He r e i n f o r c e s the discussion i n t h i s t h e s i s that a t t i t u d i n a l analysis i s a key to the d e f i n -i t i o n and understanding of image whether i t be product, brand, corporate or store. Instrumentality and Expectancy: Vroom In "Work and Motivation", V i c t o r Vroom presents an h i s t o r i c a l , cog-n i t i v e model to explain why a person chooses an a l t e r n a t i v e from a group of a l t e r n a t i v e s when confronted with a d e c i s i o n . ^ The concept of valence (preference) i s l i n k e d to outcomes as cognized by the i n d i v i d u a l . For each a l t e r n a t i v e an outcome i s perceived. The valence attached to a l t e r n a t i v e s indicates the d e s i r a b i l i t y of the outcomes. I f an outcome i s d e s i r a b l e , i t i s p o s i t i v e l y valent. I f i t i s not desired, i t i s negatively valent. A valence of zero, indicates the person i s i n d i f f e r e n t 53 Image Research Inc., Meyers, Ben Crowe and Associates, studies  mentioned i n Chapter I. 54 Vroom, op. c i t . p. .14. 50 to a t t a i n i n g or not a t t a i n i n g the outcome. Motive i s a term used to ind i c a t e a class of outcomes; those that are p o s i t i v e l y valent and which the i n d i v i d u a l wishes to a t t a i n , or those which are negatively valent and which the i n d i v i d u a l wishes to avoid. Motive i s therefore used to i n d i -cate ambivalent behaviour; attainment or avoidance. Further, Vroom argues that outcomes themselves are only means to ends. A person may be p o s i t i v e l y or negatively attracted to outcomes but may perceive that these outcomes may not be s a t i s f y i n g i n themselves but may contribute to ends which are desired or appear to be s a t i s f y i n g . Thus, instrumentality of outcomes i s a motivating force for behaviour, since outcomes are instrumental i n achieving further desired ends. Vroom presents h i s f i r s t p r o p o s i t i o n that: "the valence of an outcome to a person i s a monotonically increasing function of the algebraic sum of the products of the valences of a l l other outcomes and h i s conception of i t s instrumentality for the attainment of these other outcomes." To state t h i s i n terms of consumer behaviour, an i n d i v i d u a l may be able to shop at two d i f f e r e n t stores f o r h i s needs. He cognizes that store A i s higher p r i c e d for most items and that store B i s lower priced. Economically speaking, he has a p o s i t i v e valence for store B and a neg-ative valence f o r store A. But other factors enter into the decision. He wishes to be known as a member of a higher socio-economic group which shops at store A. He perceives that the c l i e n t e l e of store B i s not of the class he belongs to or wishes to belong to. He therefore may choose store A even though he cannot r e a l l y a f f o rd to shop there because h i s shopping there w i l l be instrumental i n achieving the desired end of con-forming to the norms of the group he f e e l s he belongs to or wishes to belong to. Of course the example does not r e a l l y i n t e r p r e t Vroom's 55 Ibid. , p. .17. 51 p r o p o s i t i o n f u l l y , for there may be a choice of twenty stores. He then w i l l shop where the highest or l e a s t low valence i s perceived to be, which i s modified by h i s conception of the instrumentality of the store i n achieving h i s desired ends. Vroom next examines the concept of expectancy. Since outcomes are dependent not only on the choices the i n d i v i d u a l makes but are also dependent upon events which are beyond h i s control,- then behaviour i s further modified by the degree to which the i n d i v i d u a l believes the out-comes to be probable, The b e l i e f that outcomes are p r o b a b i l i s t i c i s re f e r r e d to as expectancies. Since p r o b a b i l i t i e s are calculated from zero to one, then expectancies may be described i n terms of t h e i r strength. Maximum strength would be the perceived c e r t a i n t y that an act w i l l be followed by the desired outcome. Vroom then s p e c i f i e s how valencies and expectancies combine i n determining choice.. His second p r o p o s i t i o n i s : "the force on a person to perform an act i s a monotonically increasing function of the algebraic sum of the products d'f the valences of a l l outcomes and the strength of h i s expect-ancies that the act w i l l be followed by the attainment of these outcomes." An outcome with a high p o s i t i v e valence w i l l therefore have l i t t l e e f f e c t on the force to perform the act unless there i s some subjective p r o b a b i l i t y that the desired outcome w i l l be attained. The concept of the p r o b a b i l i t y of success of an outcome also has great relevance for marketing behaviour. I may prefer to buy at a par-t i c u l a r store, however I may perceive that I w i l l not f i n d the item at t h i s store. • I therefore w i l l go to the highest valent store at which I 56 Ibid. , p. 18 may expect to f i n d the item. This explains the reason f o r the preference map of images as a s i m p l i f i c a t i o n of attitudes i n the minds of consumers. The preference map e x i s t s . I t i s structured by the interwoven determi-nants of image and the intervening variables of groups and status. Stores' images r e f l e c t the valence assigned to determinants of image and r e s u l t i n p o s i t i v e , zero and negative valent images. This image map i s held i n reserve and i s lat e n t . It comes to l i f e when buying decisions are to be made. It d i r e c t s the i n d i v i d u a l ' s shopping behaviour and the operative force or motivation to go to the store i s a function of the expectancy of the Individual that the store w i l l be able to s a t i s f y h i s product needs. The preference map of store images helps the consumer sort out h i s expectations. He wants to be able to know what to expect when he walks into the store. The image determinants a l l operate to form t h i s image of expectation. Vroom's theory of instrumentality and expectancy i s highly a p p l i -cable to at t i t u d e studies of store image formation. I t helps explain why attitudes form and why images are constructed to represent symbol-i c a l l y I n d ividual a t t i t u d e s . Vroom's model s u f f e r s from two major defects. F i r s t l y , i t i s untestable as yet for i t s concepts have not been r e l a t e d to observable events. I t i s a d i f f i c u l t task to quantify valence and though we may know valence d i r e c t i o n , measurement may only be o r d i n a l rather than com-parative. Secondly, being a h l s t o r i c a l , the model suffers from the weak-ness of not formulating why i n d i v i d u a l attitudes develop and how or why they change. It does however conceptualize two important choice v a r i -ables, instrumentality and expectancy both of which operate markedly on consumptive behaviour. Alderson moves to a s i m i l a r conclusion when he 53 says: "Studies indicate that consumer decision-making proceeds i n terms of expected values. The consumer begins a shopping t r i p with some degree of s p e c i f i c a t i o n of what i s wanted and some subjective judgement as to the p r o b a b i l i t y ' o f getting them." 5 7 Summary In t h i s chapter an attempt has been made to l i n k the concepts of store image as presented In Chapter I with other t h e o r e t i c a l concepts formulated i n current marketing l i t e r a t u r e . The consumer behaviour model, as formulated by John Howard, was examined with p a r t i c u l a r reference to the " p r e d i s p o s i t i o n " of consumers towards products, brands, corporations and r e t a i l stores. Though Howard deals p r i m a r i l y with "product choice", the i n c l u s i o n of r e t a i l "store choice" can be a r b i t r a r -i l y i n f e r r e d . The p r e d i s p o s i t i o n to buy at p a r t i c u l a r stores i s cer-t a i n l y a factor i n consumer behaviour and i s , as has been shown, r e l a t e d c l e a r l y to the attitudes consumers have evolved over time. R e t a i l store image i s merely the s i m p l i f i c a t i o n of attitudes into a convenient pack-age for ready r e c a l l when the consumer i s faced with a buying stimulus. Irving Crisp's a r t i c l e on the r o l e of attitudes i n marketing was also discussed i n an attempt to show further that marketers are becoming f a m i l i a r with socio-psychological concepts which are a n a l y t i c a l tools f o r studying consumer behaviour. Crisp i s the f i r s t marketer to incor-porate attitude concepts into marketing i n an attempt to more c l e a r l y define why consumers behave as they do. He deals with "image" research as a p a r t i c u l a r kind of a t t i t u d i n a l study. Store image i s an e s s e n t i a l concept which derives mainly from the cognitive element of a t t i t u d e . 57 Wroe Alderson,Dynamic Marketing Behaviour, p. 222. 54 I t has very l i t t l e or no a f f e c t i v e component but i s rather i n the f i e l d of opinion or b e l i e f . Its u n i f y i n g strand i s the value system of the i n d i v i d u a l which i s a r e a l component of the cognitive element and permeates through a l l attitudes held by the i n d i v i d u a l , u n i f y i n g and organizing them by a movement towards consistency. The motivational model of Victor Vroom was introduced into the d i s -cussion for i t appears to explain more c l e a r l y the force that operates on an i n d i v i d u a l to choose one store over another. The concepts of instrumentality and expectancy help to explain valence and force. Images, for Vroom, would be an index system for the i n d i v i d u a l to unlock attitud e c l u s t e r s r e l a t i n g to choice decisions. Rather than examine each a l t e r n a t i v e again when faced with a d e c i s i o n , the consumer con-stru c t s a h i e r a r c h i c a l structure of valent weighted a l t e r n a t i v e s en-countered i n the past, ranging from plus to minus. This i s s i m i l a r i n concept to the preference maps that are presented i n Proposition I of t h i s paper i n order to define r e t a i l store image. 55 CHAPTER V SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS An attempt has been made i n t h i s paper to c l a r i f y the concept of r e t a i l store image by p o s t u l a t i n g two e s s e n t i a l propositions. We w i l l now deal with them one at a time. Proposition I The concept of r e t a i l store "image" can be best explained i n terms of attitu d e theory and that r e t a i l e r s may b u i l d or modify t h e i r "image" by better understand-ing a t t i t u d e formation and change. R e t a i l store "images" may be looked upon as preference maps that consumers construct from experience, perceptions, s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n s , values and aspirations which serves to aid them i n t h e i r decision-making as to where to go to purchase the assortment of products they r e -quire. A strong store image would then be associated with the propensity of customers to trade r e g u l a r l y i n a p a r t i c u l a r store without s p e c i f i c regard for t h e i r needs to buy p a r t i c u l a r items. The core of "image" theory i s presented i n t h i s p r o p o s i t i o n for i t defines store "image" formation by r e l a t i n g image to att i t u d e . Since attitudes are r e l a t i v e l y stable c h a r a c t e r i s t i c ways of r e a c t i n g to aspects of the environment, then images would also be r e l a t i v e l y f i x e d and stable. Attitudes a r i s e from experience, perceptions, s o c i a l i n t e r -actions, values and a s p i r a t i o n s , as has been shown i n the chapter on 56 a t t i t u d e theory. So, too, must images a r i s e . The consumer sorts out h i s many attitudes by means of stereotypes or images. These "pictures i n the mind" are a means of s i m p l i f y i n g the complex c l u s t e r s of attitudes. R e t a i l store "images" simplify those attitudes developed towards p a r t i c u l a r stores i n order to solve the com-plex decisions involved i n consumptive behaviour. As can be seen from previous discussions, store image research must seek out a t t i t u d e s , not merely images, by attempting to uncover two strands i n the cognitive element of a t t i t u d e , the b e l i e f s and opinions the consumer has about the store as well as the frame of reference; the value system which modifies perception. These must be investigated j o i n t l y as they operate together. Investigating Store Images: Individuals There are r e a l l y two problems involved i n i n v e s t i g a t i n g store images i n l i g h t of the d e f i n i t i o n i n Proposition I. One i s the recon-s t r u c t i o n of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s preference map of store images by the Investigator. This can only be attempted by product categories since stores do not a l l handle complete product l i n e s . A type of question might be posed i n the following manner, "To which store would you go to buy the following items?" The responses to t h i s question would uncover the top valent stores but would not uncover the t o t a l image map for i t deals i n p o s i t i v e valence only. A better technique might be a ranking of stores by the consumer. Again product categories would have to be sti p u l a t e d . Department stores might be classed as a single group, whereas s p e c i a l t y stores might be separated by product c l a s s i f i c a t i o n . A recent study at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia's marketing 57 department^ was aimed at unearthing consumer buying habits i n depart-ment stores i n the Greater Vancouver area. Really, the study res u l t e d more i n unearthing underlying attitudes and images rather than buying habits. I t i s a d i f f i c u l t task to i n t e r p r e t what people say as against what they might do. An image map must be modified by the s i g n i f i c a n c e of Vroom's expectancy theory. Though a consumer may rank a store highly, she may not shop at that store. She may choose an a l t e r n a t i v e f o r reasons of lower p r i c e , convenience or other reasons f o r she may not be able to afford the p r i c e s at the higher ranked store even though i n her image map, i t ranks higher. Expectancy i s a r e a l force operating on consumer behaviour. Once the invest i g a t o r i s able to reconstruct the image map of the consumer, the second problem i s to analyze why i t takes the shape i t does. Why are some stores higher than others i n rank? This problem centres upon the determinants of r e t a i l store image as they are perceived and judged by the consumer. Functional, psychological and s o c i o l o g i c a l determinants (see Chapter III) must be assessed and t h e i r impact must be measured. For the i n d i v i d u a l store, i t i s not enough to know how the consumer ranks i t i n comparison to other stores. The store must know why i t i s ranked as i t i s i n order to adopt strategies which may r e i n -force p o s i t i v e or change negative or zero valented determinants. Again, product categories may be used for determinant measurement. Comparative ranking within categories f o r each v a r i a b l e would help to uncover the i n d i v i d u a l store's strengths and weaknesses. The problem again i s one of measurement. A semantic d i f f e r e n t i a l technique s i m i l a r to the 58 S. Oberg, "Study of Consumer Buying Habits," unpublished survey, Vancouver, B.C., University of B r i t i s h Columbia, Department of Marketing, .1966. 58 Likert-type scale might be evolved for each v a r i a b l e . The Lippencot and Margolies s t u d y 5 9 used only two semantic d i f f e r e n t i a l s e.g. moderate p r i c e s , expensive p r i c e s ; high q u a l i t y merchandise, low q u a l i t y merchan-dise. This l i m i t e d use of comparative ranking i s not r e a l l y a true d i f f e r e n t i a l f or i t o f f e r s the consumer l i t t l e choice i n ranking. It i s an e i t h e r , or technique and cannot r e a l l y measure the variables as they should be. A f i v e point scale would be a better choice: e.g. very low p r i c e s , low p r i c e s , average p r i c e s , higher than average p r i c e s , very high p r i c e s . Such a scale would be more meaningful for each determinant measured. Problems of measuring the intervening variables of group influence and status connotations are more complex. The use of open-end questions or a s s o c i a t i o n techniques might be h e l p f u l i n uncovering the nature and extent of these v a r i a b l e s . Perhaps an interview designed to uncover the value system and aspirations of the i n d i v i d u a l might be most h e l p f u l i n assessing the impact of the intervening v a r i a b l e s . Although the examination of the f u n c t i o n a l and psychological variables may lead to an inference of the value system of the consumer, i t would be better to d i s c l o s e t h i s by some pr o j e c t i v e techniques. Other attitudes may be uncovered which a f f e c t the perceptions of the store's e f f o r t s to b u i l d an image. To the store, such information would be of v i t a l assistance i n i n d i c a t i n g needed changes i n i t s strategy i n order to enhance i t s image. By better understanding consumer a t t i t u d e s , the store may better t a i l o r i t s e f f o r t s to gain wider acceptance. The Hudson's Bay study, mentioned e a r l i e r , did uncover widely held attitudes which indicated the s i g n i f i c a n t groups of consumers were l e s s and l e s s interested i n 59 Image Research Inc., op. c i t . 59 t r a d i t i o n and the company's long h i s t o r y . What they found was that these consumers wanted to i d e n t i f y with modern, young stores. The Bay then changed i t s strategy to a t t r a c t t h i s large group by modern adver-t i s i n g techniques, more youthful colouring on boxes and bags, and a change i n merchandise to incorporate more youthful s t y l i n g . The store that can p r o j e c t a strong image, one which i s consistent i n every determinant, makes use of the p r i n c i p l e of consistency Inherent i n a t t i t u d e theory. Since consistency organizes attitudes then a high consistency should lead to a strong p o s i t i v e a t t i t u d e . For the spe-c i a l t y store, a high consistency leading to a strong image ensures i t an acceptance within the market segment i t has chosen to cater to. The problem of a high negative image for the store i n other market segments may be a r e a l one. But t h i s i s overcome by the l o y a l t y of the group i t has chosen to serve. The department store, however, has a far more complex problem i n that i t covers a wider market segment. Consistency must s t i l l pervade i t s every e f f o r t , but these e f f o r t s must be c o n s i s t -ent with the attitudes held by widely d i f f e r i n g s o c i a l groups of con-sumers. I t i s much more d i f f i c u l t f o r a department store to b u i l d a strong p o s i t i v e image for i t cannot afford a strong negative image i n any of i t s varied market segments. The appeal of the department store must therefore be the wide range of assortments i n a wide range of departments. Store services become an indispensable aid In b u i l d i n g a department store image. Ease of parking, inside store transportation, ease of c r e d i t procurement, d e l i v e r y , easy return of merchandise; a l l these aid the department store i n b u i l d i n g a favourable image, perhaps even more importantly than s t y l e of merchandise and depth of assortment. To the s p e c i a l t y store, s t y l e of merchandise and depth of assortment may be the most important image determinants. Proposition II "Image" i s those tangible and intangible pro-p e r t i e s of an object which have the e f f e c t of being cognized i n a r e l a t i v e l y uniform way with r e l a t i v e l y uniform salience by a s i g n i f i c a n t l y large proportion of a s p e c i f i e d group or aggregate of people. Investigating Store Image: Groups Proposition I defined r e t a i l store image for the i n d i v i d u a l con-sumer. Proposition II extends the d e f i n i t i o n into c a t e g o r i c a l s i g n i f -a icance which can be meaningful to marketers. Individuals make up a market but marketers must be concerned, not with i n d i v i d u a l s , but aggregates of i n d i v i d u a l s or groups. Knowing that a preference map of store images i s b u i l t up for each i n d i v i d u a l and knowing the determi-nants of store image i s of vast importance i n s t r u c t u r i n g r e t a i l store strategy, but the r e a l i z a t i o n that the image map i s s i m i l a r for a large proportion of consumers i s the r e a l key to implementing strategy. S o c i o l o g i s t s view consumptive behaviour as: " . . . the behaviour of consumers at a given time or over a period of t i m e " . ^ It i s these aggregates that r e t a i l stores must seek to i d e n t i f y . The lack of data presently on the s o c i a l f a b r i c of society, values, norms, habits and customs, i s a r e a l stumbling block to s o r t i n g out meaningful groups for marketing strategy formulation. Too often, marketers get around the problem by choosing to separate groups by one 60 Charles Clock and Francesco Nicosi a , "Uses of Sociology i n Studying Consumptive Behaviour," Journal of Marketing, v o l . 28, no. 3, July .1964, p. 51. 61 independent va r i a b l e such as income. As has been pointed out i n t h i s paper, income may not nec e s s a r i l y be the only v a r i a b l e operating. S o c i a l c l a s s and reference group aspirations may be even a stronger force i n str u c t u r i n g groups. Unfortunately, there i s not enough research r e s u l t s a v a i l a b l e as yet to i d e n t i f y the structure of contemporary society. L i f e - c y c l e concepts, too, augment the complexity of the problem. The s o l u t i o n to the analysis of store image among s p e c i f i c groups i s not yet available to marketers, but through some a r b i t r a r y c l a s s i f i -c a t i o n , group a f f i l i a t i o n s may be i n f e r r e d . In examining i n d i v i d u a l ' s store images, u s e f u l hypotheses may be uncovered to c l a s s i f y i n d i v i d u a l s to groups. Proposition I I implies a s i g n i f i c a n t segment of a group has a r e l a t i v e l y uniform image map and t h i s may be v e r i f i e d by grouping s i m i l a r reconstructed preference maps and noting the s i m i l a r i t i e s between i n d i v i d u a l s , s t r e s s i n g s o c i o l o g i c a l v a r i a b l e s such as education, race, r e l i g i o n , profession together with the economic va r i a b l e s of income. Perhaps an i n d i c a t i o n of the s o c i a l aspirations of the i n d i -v i d u a l may help i n c l a s s i f i c a t i o n . Proposition II makes use of a f a m i l i a r marketing p r i n c i p l e , that of market segmentation. I t i s necessary f o r any marketing i n s t i t u t i o n to define, through research, the varied c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the market seg-ments i t i s attempting to a t t r a c t . The idea of "target markets"^"*" i s inherent i n the t h e o r e t i c a l presentation of Proposition II. R e t a i l stores aim at "target markets" i n the same way that manufacturers and wholesalers do. By knowing the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the "target markets" r e t a i l e r s are better able to t a i l o r t h e i r strategy to s a t i s f y t h i s 61 McCarthy, Basic Marketing, p. 25. market. The concept of store image helps to understand better the market segment for i t y i e l d s an understanding of the attitudes and therefore the behaviour of the group of consumers i n the segment. Conclusion The concept of r e t a i l store "image" has been dealt- with extensively i n an attempt to c l a r i f y i t s connotations so that r e t a i l stores may better t a i l o r t h e i r strategy to enhance t h e i r market p o s i t i o n . Attitude theory has been introduced i n an e f f o r t to show that store image merely r e f l e c t s the o v e r a l l a t t i t u d e a consumer holds towards a store as well as towards a l l stores she has experienced. Two propositions are pre-sented which serve to s i m p l i f y the understanding of r e t a i l store image. One defines store image for the i n d i v i d u a l , the other moves to a mean-i n g f u l generalization. Throughout the paper, the concept of consistency has been stressed as the underlying p r i n c i p l e of a t t i t u d e organization as well as image formation. I t has been shown that a consistent store image a t t r a c t s a s i g n i f i c a n t group of consumers who i d e n t i f y themselves with the store. Bruck sums t h i s up when he says: " . . . . shopping i s an expression of a woman's personality and the store she prefers i s one that r e f l e c t s a view of con-temporary l i f e consistent with her own . . . . one that o f f e r s merchandise that f i t s i n with her home and her v i s i o n of what she wants her store to b e " . ^ Attitude theory also can be u t i l i z e d by marketers i n better under-standing how store image may be changed. Knowing f i r s t l y the attitudes of the groups comprising h i s market, the r e t a i l e r may t a i l o r h i s e f f o r t s to.influence them to regard h i s store favourably by creating a 62 G i l b e r t Bruck, "What Makes Women Buy," Fortune, August, .1956, p. 101. strong store image. As has been shown, he may examine separately a l l the determinants of store image i n l i g h t of the s o c i o l o g i c a l influences that are at work to form the value system or reference anchorages that are the piv o t about which attitude c l u s t e r s evolve. He must c l e a r l y communicate to groups of consumers the instrumentality of h i s store i n f u l f i l l i n g t h e i r consumptive needs as well as the p r o b a b i l i t y or expectancy that these needs may be f u l f i l l e d i n h i s store. By accom-p l i s h i n g t h i s , he serves to b u i l d an image'which groups of consumers r e a d i l y cognize and incorporate into t h e i r Image preference maps. The i n c l u s i o n of h i s store's image into group maps ensures a market accept-ance of h i s store. But he must continue to note attitud e changes i n h i s c l i e n t e l e and i n other consuming groups so that he may change h i s strategy i n the l i g h t of changing a t t i t u d e s . 64 BIBLIOGRAPHY I. BOOKS Alderson, Wroe, Dynamic Marketing Behaviour, Homewood, I l l i n o i s , Richard D. Irwin Inc., 1965. Brink, L. and Kelley, William T., The Management of Promotion, Englewood C l i f f s , New Jersey, Prentice-Hall, 1963. Davis, Kenneth R., Marketing Management, New York, Ronald Press, 1966. Dichter, Ernest, Handbook of Consumer Motivations, New York, McGraw-Hill, 1964. Festinger, Leon, A Theory of Cognitive Dissonance, Stanford, Stanford University Press, .1958. Howard, John, Marketing: Executive and Buyer Behaviour, New York, Columbia University Press, 1963. Howard, John, Marketing Management, Homewood, I l l i n o i s , Richard D. Irwin Inc., 1963. Jonassen, C. T., The Shopping Centre Versus Downtown, Columbus, Ohio, Ohio State University, 1955. Krech, David, Crutchfield, R.S., and Ballachy, E. L., Individual in  Society, New York, McGraw-Hill, 1962. Lambert, W. W. and Lambert, W. E., Social Psychology, Englewood C l i f f s , New Jersey, Prentice-Hall Inc., 1964. McCarthy, Jerome, Basic Marketing, Homewood, I l l i n o i s , Richard D. Irwin, Inc., 1964. Mahoney, Tom, The Great Merchants, New York, Harper and Row, 1955. Rich, Stuart W., Shopping Behaviour of Department Store Customers, Boston, Harvard Business School, 1963. Secord, Paul F., and Backman, C. W., Social Psychology, New York, McGraw-H i l l , 1964. Thurstone, L. L., and Chave, E. J., The Measurement of Attitudes, Chicago University Press, 1929. Veblen, Thorstein, Theory of the Leisure Class, New York, Viking, .1955. Vroom, Victor H. , Work and Motivation, New York, John Wiley, .1964. 65 II. ARTICLES IN BOOKS Bourne, Francis C. , " D i f f e r e n t Kinds of Decisions and Reference-Group Influence," Marketing and the Behavioural Sciences, ed. Perry B l i s s , Boston, A l l y n and Bacon Inc., 1963, pp. 247-261. Herzog, Herta, "Behavioural Science Concepts for Analyzing the Consumer," Marketing and the Behavioural Sciences, ed. Perry B l i s s , Boston, A l l y n and Bacon Inc., .1963, pp. 76-88. Lewin, Kurt, "The Conceptual Representation and the Measurement of Psychological Forces," Contributions to Psychological Theory, v o l . 1 no. 4, Durham, Duke University Press, 1938. Rosenberg, Milton, "An Analysis of Affective-Cognitive Consistency," Attitude Organization and Change, Yale Studies on Attitude and Communication, New Haven, Yale U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1963, pp. 15-64. Shibutani, Tamotsu, "Reference Groups as Perspectives," Marketing and the  Behavioural Sciences, ed. Perry B l i s s , Boston, A l l y n and Bacon Inc., 1963, pp. 220-234. II I . JOURNALS AND PUBLICATIONS Atkin, K. L., "Advertising and Store Patronage," Journal of Advertising  Research, v o l . 2, no. 4, 1962, pp. .18-23. Bruck, G i l b e r t , "What Makes Women Buy," Fortune, August, 1956, beg. p. 93. Business Week, "Hudson's Bay Mushes Along the Urban T r a i l , " September 3, 1966, pp. 64-68. Crisp, I r v i n g , "Attitude Research," Marketing Research Technique Series, no. 7, American Marketing Association, 1965. Glock, Charles and N i c o s i a , Francesco, "Uses of Sociology In Studying Consumption Behaviour," Journal of Marketing, v o l . 28, no. 3, July, .1964, pp. 51-54. H a r r i s , Remus A., "How C r e a t i v i t y i n Marketing Can Develop the Image That Counts," Advertising Age, July 21, 1958, p. 61. K o t l e r , P h i l l i p , "Behavioural Models f o r Analyzing Buyers," Journal of  Marketing, v o l . 29, no. 4, October 1965, pp. 37-45. L i k e r t , Rensis, "A Technique for the Measurement of A t t i t u d e s , " Archives  of Psychology, 1932, no. .140. Martineau, P i e r r e , "The Personality of the R e t a i l Store," Harvard Business  Review, v o l . 36, no. 1, Jan.-Feb., 1958, pp. 47-55. 66 Meyers, Robert H., "Sharpening Your Store Image," Journal.of R e t a i l i n g , v o l . 36, no. 3, F a l l .1960, pp. 129-137. Nelson, Bardin H., "Seven P r i n c i p l e s i n Image Formation," Journal of  Marketing, v o l . 26, no. 1, January, 1962, pp. 67-71. Rich, Stuart U. and P o r t i s , B. D., "Clues for Action From Shopper Preference," Harvard Business Review, March-April, 1963, pp. 132-149. Rich, Stuart U. and P o r t i s , B. D., "The Imageries of Department Stores," Journal of Marketing, v o l . 28, no. 2, A p r i l , 1964, pp. 10-15. S t r a i t s , Bruce, C., "The Pursuit of the Dissonant Customer," Journal of  Marketing, v o l . 28, no. 3, July, .1964, pp. 62-66. IV. RESEARCH STUDIES Crowe, Ben and Associates Ltd., A Store Attitude and Shopping Pattern  Study, conducted for the T. Eaton Co. Ltd., Winnipeg, 1965. Image Research Inc., A Study of Department Store Imagery Conducted i n Canadian Markets, prepared for the Hudson's Bay Co. Ltd., Winnipeg, 1964. V. UNPUBLISHED PAPERS Cr i s s y , W. J. , "Research on Images," unpublished paper, Michigan State U n i v e r s i t y , 1966. Oberg, S. , "Study of Consumer Buying Habits: Vancouver, B.C.," University of B r i t i s h Columbia, Department of Marketing, 1966. 67 APPENDIX I DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS OF RESPONDENTS VANCOUVER Total A l l Respondents 109 Demographic C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s % Age of Respondent .18-24 years 3 25-34 years 17 35-44 years 29 45-54 years ' 29 55 years or more 22 Tota l 100% Education of Respondent 1-8 years p u b l i c school 6 1-3 years high school 12 4 years high school 31 Technical school 4 1-4 years college 45 No report 2 Total .100% Occupation of Head of Household Professional 26 Executive , owner, manager .19 Sales 10 C l e r i c a l , white c o l l a r 15 S k i l l e d labor 9 Unskilled labor 1 Widow, spinst e r , r e t i r e d 11 A l l other occupations 7 No report 2 Tota l I0TS% Yearly Household Income $ 3,999 or l e s s 13 $ 4,000 - $4,999 6 $ 5,000 - $7,499 16 $ 7,500 - $9,999 13 $.10,000 or more 32 No report 20 Total .100% Source: Image Research Inc., A Study of Department Store Imagery Conducted  i n Canadian Markets, Table 36U. APPENDIX II 68 October 12, 1965. The Hudson's Bay Company Ltd., Portage Ave. R e t a i l Store, Winnipeg, Man. Attention: Public Relations O f f i c e Gentlemen: I am writing to you i n an e f f o r t to f i n d out why your executive has found i t necessary, a f t e r nearly three hundred years, to change the whole concept of "The Hudson's Bay Company, established 1670", to a pseudo-Chinese motif "the Bay". Even i f people do prefer to c a l l you "the Bay", does t h i s need a complete, i f unpalatable, " f a c e - l i f t i n g " , including the removal of the trade-mark granted at the same time as the Charter? In t h i s day of fast-changing pace, those who c l i n g to the old t r a d i t i o n s are d i s t i n c t l y i n the minority, but when encountered, present a refreshing change. Three hundred years of history-making i s no mean contribution to t h i s country's h i s t o r y , and i t i s a shame to see i t sac-r i f i c e d to a merchandiser's dream, or as a sop to consumer opinion. Perhaps the old t r a d i t i o n s do not bring more d o l l a r s into the store, but surely bring g r a t i f i c a t i o n to those who have helped to shape Canada's h i s t o r y - for example - "The Hudson's Bay Company". Personally, I have always f e l t that The Hudson's Bay Company stood for a d i g n i f i e d service, something more than j u s t another r e t a i l o u t l e t , which may or may not be around next year. The "Bay" has been around f o r three hundred years, with every i n d i c a t i o n of being around for a good long time yet. I n c i d e n t a l l y , being known as "the Bay" i s not new - i n my l i f e t i m e you were always r e f e r r e d to as "the Bay" i n our family -but without benefit of the r a d i c a l changes you seem to f e e l necessary now, and people were proud to shop at a store which had been so i n s t r u -mental i n the shaping of t h i s country, p a r t i c u l a r l y the West. .... 2 Source: Correspondence f i l e of the Hudson's Bay Company Ltd., Winnipeg, Manitoba. Appendix I I - 2 -Although I know t h i s l e t t e r w i l l not change anything, and you w i l l go ahead with your 'modernization' plans, I would r e a l l y be i n t e r -ested to know what prompted t h i s change - p a r t i c u l a r l y now, when so many plans are afoot for the Centennial celebrations, one would think you would c a p i t a l i z e on your long h i s t o r y i n t h i s country, instead of playing i t down. Yours s i n c e r e l y , (Mrs.) E i l e e n Pruden Appendix I I October 15, 1965. Mrs. E i l e e n Pruden, Dear Mrs. Pruden: Thank you for your f o r t h r i g h t comments on our "new look". We believe that the reason we have survived as a Company for almost 300 years i s that we have been able to change with the times. For 200 years we were exclusively a fur trading organization, then i n .1870 we became p r i m a r i l y a land company. Management i n the early 1900's was able to see that land, a depleting asset, would not l a s t forever and large scale investments were made i n the r e t a i l business. Today our department stores, large and small, account for over 75% of our p r o f i t s . We believe that to succeed i n the r e t a i l business our stores must constantly explore new methods, feature new merchandise, adopt new ways. About two years ago we undertook an extensive customer survey on the image of our stores and our competitors. We found that The Bay and Morgan's, our Eastern Canadian subsidiary, were highly regarded i n r e l a t i o n to competitors i n such c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s as high q u a l i t y merchandise and a t t r a c t i v e displays. They scored f a i r l y w e ll In progressiveness. But customers generally rated our stores somewhat behind competition i n best values, h e l p f u l sales people and f r i e n d l y atmosphere and The Bay and Morgan's were thought to have more expensive merchandise than competitors i n each community. Some of these findings were quite disturbing. We know our prices are competitive, we know our sales people are h e l p f u l and we would l i k e to think that our stores have a f r i e n d l y atmosphere. We a t t r i b u t e d some of the misconception on the part of our customers to f a i l u r e of our own communications. We f e l t the use of the formal .... 2 Source: Correspondence f i l e of the Hudson's Bay Company Ltd., Winnipeg, Manitoba. Appendix II Mrs. E i l e e n Fruden - 2 - October .15, .1965. Hudson's Bay Company name i n the archaid old English configuration, together with a Coat of Arms, contributed to t h i s aloof, s t u f f y , some-what old-fashioned and high p r i c e image. We decided to use our less formal name - The Bay - which had been used by customers and s t a f f for many years, as the p r i n c i p a l i d e n t i f i e r for our stores, r e t a i n i n g the Hudson's Bay Company name for secondary pur-poses i n the stores - i t w i l l continue to be found on many items of merchandise - for our fur operations and for corporate purposes. We then set about to design a new configuration for The Bay. We wanted a design which would suggest a store that was fashionable, modern, dependable, f r i e n d l y , and o f f e r i n g q u a l i t y f or the d o l l a r spent. We also wanted a design which would be strong and unique. Individual t e s t s i n the f i e l d of design vary widely and the r e s u l t which you describe as "pseudo-Chinese" impressed us as the best of a number of al t e r n a t i v e s i n s a t i s f y i n g these c r i t e r i a . We then proceeded to apply the new design to a wide v a r i e t y of items, Including wrapping materials, forms and stationery, signs and trucks (a program which i s s t i l l i n progress). The objective i s to give our stores a look which i s more modern, f r i e n d l y , fashionable, competitive, progressive and appropriate to our business. We hope that our new look w i l l grow on those of our customers who f i n d i t strange at f i r s t . Many thanks for having taken the time and trouble to write. Yours s i n c e r e l y , A. R. Huband, Secretary, Canadian Committee. 

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