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Li-Chun Huang

Product behavior represents how consumers perceive and use a product. Its importance in predicting consumer buying behavior is well documented in marketing research. There are, however, no data available investigating the role of product behavior in the floral market. This study addressed this deficiency. Data were first analyzed using factor analysis to extract the principal determinants of product behavior in the floral market. As a result, six primary behavioral factors were identified and named as: “using flowers as daily essentials,” “perceived product value,” “negative attitude toward flowers,” “using flowers as gifts,” “eventbased usage,” and “experience in receiving flowers.” The effects of these extracted behavioral factors on consumer flower purchase frequency were then further investigated with multinomial logistic regression analysis. Analytical results revealed that behaviors “using flowers as daily essentials” and “using flowers as gifts” forced consumers to become heavy users in the floral market. Conversely, “negative attitude toward flowers” negatively affected the floral purchase frequency. Experimental results in this study also suggest that promoting a positive attitude toward flowers is essential in encouraging consumers to become flower users. The intended use of flower product purchase, whether for personal use or as gifts, was the main factor affecting the frequent purchasing of flowers.

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Li-Chun Huang

The concept of market segmentation in the floral market has become widely accepted, and a substantial body of research has investigated the characteristics of consumer behavior in several different segments of the market. Robertson and Hahn (1978

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Li-Chun Huang and Li-Chun Chen

related research has increased in recent years. For example, Hall et al. (2012) analyzed the importance of social media to florists and provided suggestions on how to operate social media successfully in the floral market. Prince and Prince (2014

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Yen-Chun Lai and Li-Chun Huang

A high percentage of fresh flowers sold are consumed as gifts in many countries, such as Taiwan, Japan, and the United States. As gift consumption is so important for the sales of fresh flowers, consumer behavior in floral gift giving is investigated in this research. This study explored the consumer decision to purchase fresh flowers as a romantic gift for Valentine’s Day based on 1) relationship stage, 2) affection, and 3) satisfaction with the relationship. The statistical results, based on the data of 366 valid questionnaires collected from a self-administered questionnaire survey, showed that the relationship stage of “personality need fulfillment,” the affection of “passion,” and relationship satisfaction significantly influenced the consumer decision of whether to purchase fresh flowers as romantic Valentine’s Day gifts. Consumers were more likely to buy their intimate partners fresh flowers when they perceived their personality need, such as the need of being loved, was fulfilled in the relationship. When strongly passionate about that relationship, they tended to give fresh flowers in conjunction with other gifts. However, when consumers were more satisfied with their romantic relationships, they were less likely to buy their intimate partners fresh flowers. The study results have valuable implications for florists’ business alliances and advertising campaign development for promoting floral gifts efficiently.

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Li-Chun Huang and Tzu-Fang Yeh

How to sell more flowers is always a concern of the practitioners in the floral market, therefore, understanding the driving forces that influence consumers' choices in regard to the purchases of flowers, such as to buy or not to buy, how much to

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Virginia R. Walter, Mark D. Shelton and Richard A. Cavaletto

Shipments of floral products to Pacific rim markets must meet stringent pest-free requirements. Conventional fumigation methods with methyl bromide will soon become unavailable. Studies show that controlled atmosphere (CA) environments can offer effective insect control. Currently, CA overseas marine shipping is occuring with fresh fruits and vegetables. These shipments use microprocessors to precisely control O2, CO2, temperature and relative humidity. This study is evaluating similar commercial shipments with fresh flowers and foliage under low temperature and low O2 and high CO2 atmospheres. Preliminary results with shipments conducted by TransFresh to Guam indicate that properly maintained CA shipments of 0.5 % O2 kill insects and that flowers in properly maintained atmospheres can withstand 14 days of marine shipment with minimum effect on post-harvest life. Adequate regulation of CA storage during transit seems to be the primary limitation to the expansion of floral markets using this method of shipment.

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Neil O. Anderson and Natalie J. Walker

Genetically modified organism (GMO) crops provide new trait(s) that may benefit floral designers and consumers. A limited array of GMO cut flower cultivars exist in the floral markets worldwide: nine carnations (Dianthus caryophyllus) and one rose (Rosa ×hybrida). Labeling GMO flowers in the United States is not required. Thus, most distributors, flower auctions, brokers, wholesalers, floral designers and consumers are not aware that they exist. To test the acceptance of GMO cut flowers with potential future floral designers, n = 121 students enrolled in Floral Design (HORT 1013) at the University of Minnesota during 2005–07, 2009, and 2011, designed with standard and miniature GMO Moon™ series carnations. Each student created a Hogarth design with both types of carnations and assembled a price sheet. Students examined the differences between GMO lavender/purple carnations and those created with classic methods of spraying, dipping, or infusion. In 2009 only, students were also assigned to write a marketing paragraph about their GMO floral design. Each year, students were given an identical question on a subsequent midterm examination to determine their position on GMO cut flowers, including development of a floral shop policy to inform customers. Student examination responses ranged from not carrying GMO products [1/121 (0.8% response)], offering GMO/non-GMO carnation options to the consumer [81/121 (66.9% response)], or only selling only GMOs [33/121 (27.3% response)] that differed significantly from a 1:1:1 chi-square (χ2). A significant majority of students would inform their customers of the GMO crops [89/121 (73.6% response)]. In several instances, consumers were not to be informed of the GMO nature unless they queried about the higher price point. Similarly, marketing paragraphs did not uniformly highlight the GMO nature of the flowers. Implications for the next generation of floral designers demonstrate that, with the exception of students in 2005–06, most would sell both GMO and non-GMO flowers with a majority of shops clearly identifying GMOs.

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purchase intentions in the floral market. Understanding behavioral characteristics associated with personal-use and gift purchases may help to improve the efficiency of marketing strategies in the floral market. Huang (p. 183) observed behavioral

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Scott E. Hygnstrom, Peter D. Skelton, Scott J. Josiah, Jason M. Gilsdorf, Dallas R. Virchow, James A. Brandle, Anil K. Jayaprakash, Kent M. Eskridge and Kurt C. VerCauteren

-Einspahr, 2001 ). The wholesale market for fresh woody florals was about $8 million, exclusive of Pacific coast states in 2000 ( Lambe, 2001 ). Additional woody floral markets exist for decorative woody florals, such as curly willow, pussy willow, and redozier

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Tzu-Fang Yeh and Li-Chun Huang

the consumers' choice to buy or not to buy, as well as the choice of product type and brand of a choice alternative. Many studies have been conducted to help us better understand consumers' behavior in the floral market, but systematic research on the