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Innovation Behavior of Older Consumers

An Empirical Analysis of Older and Younger Consumers’ Determinants of Consumer Electronic Products Ownership


Armin Tank

This book picks up two mega trends: On the one hand population figures demonstrate the structural transition of the majority of western industrial nations. This demographic change has manifold consequences, especially on companies and their clients. On the other hand most of the markets are characterized by increasingly shorter product life cycles and global competition. The commercialization of innovations represents one possibility to remain competitive in this environment. The author connects important aspects of these two subject matters and identifies existing differences in the consumer behavior of older and younger individuals regarding innovative consumer electronic devices – a product category that is characterized by an exceptionally high pace of innovation.


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6 Conclusion


6.1 Synopsis and Interpretation of the Results With this study it was aimed to add a small piece to the incomplete puzzle re- garding older individuals’ consumer behavior. More precisely, deficits were de- tected in the academic research of older persons’ innovation behavior. The analysis of the current market situation and the literature review indicated that younger and older consumers’ innovation behavior regarding consumer elec- tronic products (CEP) has not been researched in great detail and, thus, repre- sents an interesting research focus. Therefore, the central objective of the disser- tation was to find out whether the ownership of innovative CEP depends on the age of the individual and, if so, what factors can be identified that are responsi- ble for ownership. With the help of prior gerontological knowledge in combination with theoretical knowledge on general innovation behavior of individuals, the concrete research hypotheses were formulated. At the same time the potential explanatory vari- ables (determinants) of innovation adoption were identified. As no adequate data was available to test the research hypotheses, a survey was set up and more than 500 persons between 18 and 85 years of age were interviewed. The collected data allowed building the final scales in order to measure the theoretically gen- erated determinants. Then, by use of several statistical methods, the hypotheses were tested and research questions were answered. In a first step, the gathered data indicated a negative relationship between age and different definitions of CEP ownership. That means that ownership hy- potheses derived...

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