The purpose of this assignment is to help students understand


The purpose of this assignment is to help students understand the value and importance of data in 

the study of consumer behavior. This is an individual assignment and must be completed entirely 

on your own.

1. Choose a data-driven consumer phenomenon to examine. This phenomenon can be based on 

one of the following:

• You observe some aspect of consumer behavior for a period of time and record your 

observations in a systematic way. For example, you observe the process by which 

consumers choose from among different ice cream flavors at an ice cream store, the 

activities that commuters do while waiting for their bus/train to arrive at a bus 

stop/station, or the factors that affect how shoppers choose between the human checkout

option or the self-service checkout option at a supermarket.

• You hear or read from the news about a consumer trend or development that has 

emerged. For example, consumers may have been more likely to shop via their mobile 

phones rather than in physical stores, use recyclable cups in order to support 

environmental sustainability in recent years, or prefer to travel solo instead of in groups 

or with their families for their overseas vacations.

You may define consumer phenomenon broadly or narrowly. Note that as a marketer it is

important to understand elements of consumer behavior including awareness, search, 

information gathering, use, consumption, and even disposal. The phenomenon that you 

choose to study could apply to all consumers in general or to a particular segment (or 

segments) of consumers. So be creative. Put yourself in the shoes of a business that is trying 

to understand and improve some element of its product or service, or a (public) policymaker 

who is hoping to understand some aspect of people’s daily lives in order to enhance the 

general well-being of residents.

2. Collect primary and/or secondary data to substantiate the consumer phenomenon of your 

choice. If you choose to collect primary observational data, be prepared to spend at least 30 

minutes to observe and make notes. Alternatively, you could collect secondary (or archival)

data from published media, company reports, and/or other available sources. If relevant, you 

could also use both primary and secondary data in your investigation.BMS5506 Consumer Behavior (AY2020-21 Sem2) Professor Leonard Lee

Note: If you choose to collect primary observational data in-person, it is imperative that as a 

representative of the National University of Singapore that you collect data in an ethical 

manner. You must adhere to safe-distancing regulations as well as respect individuals’ 

privacy particularly in situations where privacy is expected.

3. Write a brief report (no more than 2 double-spaced pages, 12-point font, Times New 

Roman, 1-inch margins) that summarizes your observations. This report should contain 

three elements:

a. What was the consumer phenomenon that you chose to study and what was the

method that you used in your study?

b. What did you learn about the phenomenon? 

Provide at least three insights of practical significance (for 

consumers/managers/policymakers) based on what you learnt from the 

primary/secondary data that you collected. Your description should include:

i. A clear description of the insight (i.e., “what?”)

ii. Your hypotheses about potential explanations or underlying causes (i.e., 

“why?”)

iii. Implications of the insight (e.g., potential solutions or opportunities that 

consumers/managers/policymakers can implement) (i.e., “so what?”)

c. In general, what did you learn about data-driven consumer studies?

For example, you may wish to comment on how you think you may have 

introduced errors into your study given the method(s) that you used, and how you 

might conduct your study differently if you were to do it again, perhaps with more

resources. 

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