Implications of behavioral decision theory for health marketing
Important decisions in the area of health are made by consumers every day. However, there has been insufficient attention to determining the best theoretical foundations on which promoting health should proceed. This article proposes that, in many cases, behavioral decision theory (BDT) is more useful than traditional economic utility theory for the marketing of health behaviors to the public. The article discusses some of the implications of BDT for health marketing, and reviews the findings of three pilot studies conducted to examine these implications. Study 1 examines the evaluation of multiple gains and multiple losses in the health domain; Study 2 examines the applicability of price-bundling concepts to gymnasium membership usage; and Study 3 examines the effect of time perspectives on health decisions. The implications of these findings for health marketing, and suggestions for future research, are discussed.