Identifying differences in coffee consumers using hedonics, emotion, coffee involvement, and self-identity
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Coffee consumers differ in the importance and value they place in high-quality coffee. Focus groups revealed that coffee choices are influenced by habit, familiarity, meaning and significance, price, and one’s identity as it relates to coffee. Emotional consumer tests were performed with three different qualities of coffee, leading to the identification of four consumer clusters that varied in their degree of “involvement” with coffee. “Typical coffee drinkers” and “uninterested coffee drinkers” did not care strongly about coffee, while “coffee lovers” loved all coffee and “coffee snobs” were choosey and discriminative about their coffee. Self-identified coffee connoisseurs were no more likely to consume high-quality coffee than non-connoisseurs, suggesting that self-selecting an identity may say more about consumers wish to convey versus their true consumption habits. The most important emotional qualities consumers seek in their coffee relate to gratification, calming, focusing, the absence of disgust, and general positive emotions.