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双语哈评 |型男更能激发男顾客购买欲

作者:艾莉森·比尔德(Alison Beard) 2018-09-10 12:58:43 0

An international research team led by Tobias Otterbring, now at Aarhus University, tracked purchases people made at a home-furnishings store in a midsize Swedish city during one weekend. When a tall, athletic-looking male employee stood at the entrance, male shoppers spent significantly more money than usual and more, on average, than female shoppers did.The conclusion: Men buy more from manly men.

丹麦奥胡斯大学教授托比亚斯·奥特布林(Tobias Otterbring)带领的一个国际研究团队,在一个周末观察了瑞典某中型城市家居商店的购物情况。当一个高大健壮的男性店员站在入口时,男性顾客的消费额明显高于平时,且高于女性顾客的平均消费额。研究者由此得出结论:型男更能激发男顾客购买欲。

Otterbring: The presence of this physically imposing guy in a store uniform as soon as people walked in the door did seem to change the way that men shopped. When he was there, the average bill for male shoppers came to about $165—more than double the average of $72 that women spent during those times and much higher than what either men or women spent when the employee was absent, which was $92 for men and $97 for women. The average price per item men paid was also higher—$18, versus about $10 when the employee wasn’t at the door, which was also the same amount women paid per item at any time.

奥特布林:顾客一走进店门就会看到这个身姿英武、穿着制服的店员,这确实改变了男性顾客的购物方式。这位店员站在那里时,男性顾客的平均消费金额达到165美元,是同一时间段女性顾客平均消费金额(72美元)的两倍以上,也比他不在时男性顾客和女性顾客的平均消费额(分别为92美元和97美元)高。这位店员在场时,男性顾客购买商品的平均价格也较高,达到18美元,店员不在场时则是10美元。10美元也是女性在所有情况下购买商品的平均价格。

My coauthors and I did this study in conjunction with the Service Research Center, CTF, at Karlstad University. Interestingly, in later research we found that the effect was even greater for male customers of short stature. We think this is because the physically fit male we used activated the classic male competitive instinct. We know that tall, athletic-looking men typically have greater success in economic and mating markets. So when male shoppers saw him, we suspect, they sensed a rival and responded by signaling their own status: They opened their wallets.

我和同事与瑞典卡尔施塔特大学的服务研究中心(CTF)联合进行了这项研究。有趣的是,在后续研究中我们发现,这种效应在身材较矮小的男性顾客身上更明显。我们认为,这是由于那位店员的好身材激发了原始的男性竞争本能。我们知道,高大健壮的男性一般在经济和婚恋市场上都更成功。所以我们设想,男性顾客会把他看成竞争对手、强调自己的地位,方式就是打开钱包。

HBR: And female employees—or less imposing male ones—wouldn’t inspire the same reaction?

Previous research has shown that men are indeed more inclined to try to prove their superiority when exposed to physically attractive women. We wanted to explore intrasexual competitive behavior instead. There were, of course, other store employees around during our field study. But we only compared purchases made when this particular male employee was present against those made when he was absent. We suspected that smaller male employees wouldn’t elicit the same effect and found support for that theory in a series of later lab studies. Shorter men just don’t seem to trigger the same evolutionary urge to show off.

HBR:女性店员或身材没那么突出的男店员就不会引起这种反应?

此前研究显示,面对身体有吸引力的女性,男性确实会尝试证明自己的优越性。但我们这次想研究同性之间的竞争行为。在我们的现场实验中,当然也有其他店员,但我们只比较了这一位男性店员在场和不在场时顾客的消费表现。我们设想,身材差一些的男店员不会激发同样的反应,这在后续的实验室研究中得到证实。身材较矮小的男性不会激发出那种源自进化本能的炫耀冲动。

intrasexual:同性别的

Why wouldn’t the women also spend more money in the presence of a physically dominant guy?

In an evolutionary sense, it’s been more advantageous for women to play up their beauty and health than to highlight their status and wealth. Maybe if we’d conducted our field study in a cosmetics store, we’d have obtained different results. At the same time, research has shown that women respond to intrasexual competition, too. For example, after looking at pictures of attractive women, they’re more likely to favor weight loss pills, extreme exercise, excessive suntanning, and other beautification behaviors.

面对身材这么突出的男店员,女性顾客为什么没有增加消费?

从进化的角度看,女性突出自己的美丽和健康,要比强调地位和财富更有利。如果在化妆品店进行研究,我们也许会得到不同结果。也有研究显示,女性同样会对同性竞争做出反应。例如,在看到有吸引力的女性的照片后,她们会更加努力提升自己的身体吸引力,包括服用减肥药、进行高强度锻炼和美黑等。

Could it be the timing of the employee’s shift that mattered instead? Men spend more in the afternoon than they do in the morning?

We controlled for that by having the employee work after lunch on Saturday and before lunch on Sunday, so he was present at different times on different days.

有没有可能是这位员工出现的时间起作用呢?男性在下午的消费水平是否高于上午?

我们安排这位员工周六上午和周日下午当班,这样就排除了这个因素。

What exactly did he look like? How tall is tall? How muscular is muscular?

He was taller than 95% of the American male population, which is also tall in Sweden, and had recently finished competing as a professional track-and-field athlete, so he was perceived as significantly more physically dominant than an average man. And in our follow-up lab experiments, which involved manipulating photos of men to appear either more fit or not, we found that seeing the images of stronger-looking guys caused men (but not women) to prefer larger logos on their clothing. We later determined that this effect was driven by the shorter male study participants, not the taller ones.

他的身材到底什么样?多高算高?多阳刚算阳刚?

他比95%的美国男性都高,在瑞典也算很高,而且刚参加完职业田径赛,所以身材比一般人明显突出。在后续的实验室实验中,参与者看到一些经过修饰的男性照片,结果看到显得健壮的男性照片的男性参与者,更偏好商标明显的衣服(女性参与者没有这种效果)。我们发现,这种效果主要是由身材较矮小的男性参与者带来的,而与身材较高大的男性参与者无关。

How does all of this play out for male shoppers who are gay?

We didn’t measure or control for sexual orientation in our studies. But given the random assignment of study subjects in the settings we used, we would expect that the number of gay men would be evenly distributed across our experimental groups, and so shouldn’t have strongly influenced the results. I can’t say for sure, but I’d think that gay men could feel the same sense of rivalry as straight men, even if they’re competing for different types of mates.

这对男同性恋顾客有什么影响?

这项研究并未考察性取向因素,也没有排除这个因素。但考虑到研究参与者都是随机选定,我们认为男同性恋者应均衡分布在各实验组别中,因此不会显著影响结果。虽然不能肯定,但我认为尽管男同性恋者性对象不同,也会和异性恋者一样感受到竞争。

Should retailers that want more business from men change their hiring criteria then? Only “The Rock” look-alikes need apply?

If you’re a company selling status-signaling luxury goods—like cars, watches, and clothes—it’s certainly an idea to consider. You probably wouldn’t see the same effect in stores selling more-functional, utilitarian items, however. I’d also note that the big, tall person doesn’t have to be an employee or even physically present, as our lab studies on logo preferences, which used photos of men in both uniforms and street clothes, showed. So we see implications for not just retail hiring but also advertising and marketing.

那么,想要争取更多男性顾客的商家是否应改变聘用标准?比如只招大块头店员?

如果是售卖象征地位的奢侈品,比如汽车、手表、高级服饰,那么当然可以考虑这样做。但这对售卖功能性和实用性商品的店家可能没有帮助。需要指出的是,身材高大的人不一定是店员,甚至不一定出现在店里。我们的实验室研究就是证据。那项实验使用了穿着制服和普通服装的男性照片,结果影响了参与者对衣服商标的偏好。因此这项研究的成果不仅对零售有启发,还可能对广告和营销有启发。

utilitarian:功利的,实用的

You mean companies can drop the slim male models and short male actors and hire more NBA or NFL stars to sell cars and clothes?

You already see some of this: Tom Brady in ads for Movado, Aston Martin, and Ugg; Roger Federer for Rolex and Credit Suisse.

你是说企业可以抛弃苗条男模和矮个男演员,聘请NBA或NFL球员来代言汽车和服装?

已经有一些例子了,比如汤姆·布雷迪(Tom Brady)出演摩凡陀、阿斯顿马丁和Ugg广告,罗杰·费德勒为劳力士和瑞信代言。

But isn’t there something a little amoral about hiring spokesmen or staff whose main role is to make customers feel bad about themselves so that they spend more?

Well, I’d say that the psychological mechanism is an increased drive to compete with people of the same gender, not decreased feelings of self-confidence. But retailers will have to decide for themselves whether it’s a good strategic move to, say, assign a taller male employee to handle the account of a shorter male customer. Maybe that would drive more sales in the short run.But it might also cause the short man to leave the store feeling unhappy and not come back, which wouldn’t be good for business. Personally, I would never encourage any organization to hire staff members simply on the basis of looks. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be aware of these superficial biases and understand how heavily they can influence consumption.

但为了让顾客自我感觉不佳而招募代言人和员工,刺激顾客多花钱,这是不是有点不道德?

呃,其实这种心理机制主要在于同性竞争,而不是自信受损。不过零售商确实需要考虑具体策略,比如是否应该安排高个男店员服务矮个男顾客。这也许能在短期内促进销售,但也许会让顾客因为不开心而一去不返,造成损失。我个人绝不会建议任何组织只凭外表招聘。但这并不妨碍我们认识这些肤浅的偏见,并了解它们能对消费造成多大影响。(王晨 |译   牛文静 | 校   万艳 | 编辑)

superficial:表面的,肤浅的

原文参见《哈佛商业评论》中文版2018年9月刊。

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