Market segmentation based on age and attitude toward the past: Concepts, methods, and findings concerning nostalgic influences on customer tastes

Morris B. Holbrook, Robert M. Schindler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

130 Scopus citations

Abstract

The marketing literature has neglected some effects of age and attitude toward the past that are potentially useful to marketers in the formulation of segmentation strategy for cultural products that appeal differentially to various customer tastes. Specifically, with respect to cognitive responses, previous research has supported a peak in memory for events that occurred during one's late adolescence or early adulthood. Similarly, research on the affective responses of consumers has shown comparable effects connected with nostalgia - first, an age-related preference peak for offerings associated with one's youth; second, a shift in this preference peak to an earlier age for those more favorable in attitude toward the past. The purpose of the present study is to illustrate such effects and to indicate their potential marketing implications in the case of one particular cultural product category - namely, motion pictures. Toward these ends, a complete reanalysis of data reported in another context: (1) replicates both the age-related preference peak and the nostalgic shift due to attitude toward the past, (2) extends these findings to the case of tastes for motion pictures, and (3) suggests the possibly dramatic implications that such findings might carry for the formulation of marketing strategy in the areas of entertainment, the arts, and other media-related offerings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-39
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Business Research
Volume37
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Marketing

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