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The influence of marketing media on tweens propensity to consume electronic goods.

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Tweens are a different regiment of children who are not reflected as children, but have not technologically advanced into fully autonomous teenagers (Hulan, 2007:31). This target market is viewed as the, “richest generation of children” (Lindstrom, 2004:175). This market has disposable income and the ability to influence purchases which are endorsed, which results in the tween market being acknowledged as a commercial niche market. For an effective marketing campaign, marketing managers need to be mindful of children’s advertising knowledge, as well as the influence and pressure from peer endorsement on purchases which are made. As a result, to define the influence of these variables, a research tool (questionnaire) was given out to respondents involving 390 participants in primary and secondary schools situated in the KwaZulu Natal region, who successfully completed this research instrument. Questionnaires were administered to the tween market during life-orientation class as an exercise in the selected schools. Parent/Guardians consent had to be received before their child was able to participate in the study. Children were also given consent forms to fill in; to make the teacher aware if they wanted to partake in this study. The main aim of this study was to understand the influence marketing media has on tween market consumption, which produces their consumption patterns. Also with the different media channels developing, the marketing teams have to understand how this target market understands and interprets their messages. The key research objective was to define tweens advertising literacy at different stages and their propensity to consume advertising literacy, as well as the degree of parents’ and peers’ influence on their purchasing decisions. Understanding what factors influence the tween market was also looked at to determine their role in purchasing decisions. These factors will assist marketers and professionals when margin structuring marketing and media campaigns aimed at the tween market. Generation Z is defined as the tween market and this was also looked at in detail; it consisted of character, personality and preferences. Their consumption of media and digital media was looked at in detail as it influences marketing campaigns. Data was analyzed using SPSS (Statistics Package for Social Sciences). Findings from the data collection were signified, and compared to the collected works gathered, and an emphasis was on Roedder’s information processing model and Piaget’s Hierarchy of Cognitive development, (Roedder, 1981:145; Piaget, 1960:135). The data gathered was displayed in various chart formats and tables to form an illustration of the results. The results showed there is a sturdy positive association amongst advertising literacy and the different age-groups. Peer influence also has an influence on the tween market purchase decision. It was also established the tween market is inclined to consume endorsed products, which have a high visibility during consumption, then goods with lower consumption conspicuousness. Parental influence also has a strong influence on the tween market and their purchase decisions. Other factors i.e. cultural & social, will also be looked at to gather insights on alternate factors which influence the target audience’s purchasing decisions. From the key gatherings, recommendations and insights were put together for South African managers and marketing professionals. This study report includes recommendations for research and considerations for marketing and media campaigns which will be aimed at tween’s and their purchase patterns. One of the recommendations marketing professional’s states campaigns should consider advertising to the tween market as well, instead of forgetting because they are a niche segment. Empirical findings show children are more naïve consumers and more enthusiastic to buying goods. This makes them an attractive division, as they are eager consumers.


Doctor of Philosophy in Management. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg, 2017.