Absolute Value

Absolute Value

What Really Influences Customers in the Age of (Nearly) Perfect Information

By Itamar Simonson; Emanuel Rosen

HarperBusiness, Hardcover, 9780062215673, 232pp.

Publication Date: February 2014


Going against conventional wisdom, Absolute Value reveals what really influences customers today and offers a new framework--the Influence Mix--for thinking about consumer decision making, which should help managers develop more effective marketing strategies.

How people buy things has changed profoundly--yet the fundamental thinking about consumer decision making and marketing has not. Most marketers still believe that they can shape consumers' perceptions and drive their behaviors. In this provocative book, Stanford professor Itamar Simonson and best-selling author Emanuel Rosen show why current mantras about branding and loyalty are losing their relevance. When consumers base their decisions on reviews from other users, easily accessed expert opinions, price comparison apps, and other emerging technologies, everything changes. Contrary to what we frequently hear, consumers will (on average) make better choices and act more rationally.

Absolute Value answers the pressing question of what influences customers in this new age. Simonson and Rosen identify the old-school marketing concepts that need to change and explain how a company should design its communication strategy, market research program, and segmentation strategy in the new environment. Filled with deep analysis, case studies, and cutting-edge research, this forward-looking book provides an entirely new way of thinking about marketing.

About the Author
Itamar Simonson is the Sebastian S. Kresge Professor of Marketing at the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University. His award-winning work has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and many other outlets worldwide. He has been recognized as one of the world's leading authorities on consumer decision making.

Emanuel Rosen is the author of the national bestseller The Anatomy of Buzz. He was previously vice president of marketing at Niles Software, where he launched the company's flagship product, EndNote. Rosen started his career in marketing as an award-winning copywriter. His books are available in twelve languages.