Title: The role of purpose in consumer choice: a comparison between baby boomers and millennials in Germany with a focus on sustainability and consciousness

Authors: Isabelle Rennollet; Christian Schmidkonz; Patricia Kraft

Addresses: Munich Business School, Elsenheimerstraße 61, 80687 Munich, Germany ' Munich Business School, Elsenheimerstraße 61, 80687 Munich, Germany ' Munich Business School, Elsenheimerstraße 61, 80687 Munich, Germany

Abstract: This paper explores the role of purpose in consumer choice in Germany. A growing number of consumers around the globe realise that hyperconsumerism prevents them from finding lasting happiness. They want to focus more on sustainable and conscious consumption and place the role of purpose more and more in the centre of their consumer choice. In this study two highly important and influential consumer groups, the baby boomers and millennials, are contrasted against each other to find out whether there are significant differences in this context between them. After having reviewed the relevant literature, empirical analyses were conducted on a sample comprising 289 German consumers. The main findings are that German consumers rated purpose as the fourth most important criterion. Quality, value for money, and personal recommendations are more important to German consumers when choosing a product. It was also found that German consumers are mainly driven by the desire for happiness and fulfilment, and their will to make a positive difference in the world when choosing purpose-infused products. It was also revealed that German baby boomers and German millennials display more similarities than differences.

Keywords: purpose-infused products; consumer choice; conscious society; conscious marketing; purpose-driven brands; conscious consumers; sustainable consumption; baby boomers; millennials; Germany.

DOI: 10.1504/WREMSD.2020.107273

World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, 2020 Vol.16 No.3, pp.241 - 261

Received: 29 Jun 2018
Accepted: 08 Jul 2019

Published online: 11 May 2020 *

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