PERSONAL SELLING:
PERCEPTION AND ATTENTION 

INFORMATION PROCESSING 
the process through which a person is 

  1. exposed to information 
  2. attends to it 
  3. comprehends it 
  4. places it in memory and 
  5. retrieves it for later use. 

PERCEPTION  
the process through which a person is 

  • exposed to information, 
  • attends to the information, and 
  • comprehends the information 
Exposure: 
a person receives information through his/her senses 

Attention: 
a person allocates processing capacity to a stimulus 

Comprehension: 
a person interprets the information to obtain meaning from it 


ATTENTION 
the allocation of cognitive capacity to an object or task 

Types of Attention 

  • voluntary attention:

  • a person actively searches out information that has personal relevance 

  • selective attention:

  • a person selectively focuses attention on relevant information 

  • involuntary attention:

  • a person is exposed to something surprising, novel, threatening, or unexpected 
    - e.g.: 
    • surprise 
    • movement 
    • unusual sounds 
    • size of stimulus 
    • contrast effects 
    • color 

COMPREHENSION 

Interpretation processes: 
people draw upon their experience, memory and expectations to attach meaning to a stimulus 

Expectations: 
prior beliefs about what should happen in a given situation can influence the interpretation of information 

Semiotics: 
how it is that people interpret meaning from signs 

  • signs: words, gestures, pictures, products, and logos used to communicate information 

INVOLVEMENT 
the process through which a person is influenced by the 

  • perceived personal importance and/or 
  • interest 
evoked by a stimulus 

Personal importance increases as perceived risk increases. 

As involvement increases, a person has greater motivation to comprehend and elaborate on information salient to the purchase. 

Higher levels of involvement are expected to result in 

  • a greater depth of information processing 
  • increased arousal 
  • more extended decision making 
Factors which can influence purchase involvement: 
  • situation 
  • product 
  • personality 
  • communication