Mapping market mobility: Psychographic profiles and media exposure

William R. Darden, Warren A. French, Roy D. Howell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Are there households in trading areas that have unique mobility predispositions? Can mobility types be monitored? And does mobility type relate to the life style and consumption patterns of households? This study examines the mobility and life style characteristics of suburbanites in a medium-sized city in an effort to discover the answers to these and other questions. In particular, the article suggests that mobility relates to life style and media usage, which in turn largely determines the quality of consumer demand and the most efficient media to reach such a market. If the composition of mobility types within a shopping area is changing, retailers should monitor these changes so that they can better predict retail demand-both quality and quantity. A self-administered questionnaire was designed to measure (1) the mobility characteristics of consumers-including their local moves, long-distance moves, and their predisposition to move; (2) the life styles and socioeconomic characteristics of consumers; and (3) the median exposures of households. The instrument was administered by personal interviews with 322 suburban housewives within a medium-sized trading area. The usage sample included 304 cases. The data support the hypotheses of the study; mobility types emerged from the analysis and these had distinctive life styles and media habits. Periodic sampling of households is suggested as an approach to monitoring mobility composition within the trading area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-74
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Business Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1979


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