How Purchase Probability Scales Can Shed Light on Consumer Purchase Intentions

Landslide. September–October 2019;12(1):51–54

Marketing, economics, and public opinion researchers use surveys to study topics such as consumer behavior, preferences, and purchase intent. Survey experts frequently address these themes in litigation matters related to intellectual property (IP), trademark infringement, false advertising, and antitrust and competition. A major element in many such matters is determining whether consumers would have purchased the product at issue. One way to answer this question is by employing purchase intent measures called “scales.” These measures allow consumers to express a likelihood that they would buy a product or service. In litigation, scales measure the impact of advertisement claims, product features, missing disclosures, or anticompetitive arrangements on consumer behavior.

The use of such scales is the focus of “How Purchase Probability Scales Can Shed Light on Consumer Purchase Intentions,” an article written by Analysis Group Principal Rene Befurt and coauthor Alvin J. Silk for Landslide, the American Bar Association’s (ABA’s) publication on IP law. The authors discuss the reliability and validity of purchase probability scales in determining purchase intention, focusing on the 11-point Juster scale. Dr. Befurt and Dr. Silk discuss a meta-analysis involving 40 independent studies establishing the Juster scale’s long-term track record and predictive validity, and correlations between the purchase intent measure and subsequent purchase behavior. They also discuss what they describe as the “rather skeptical and selective consideration of the Juster scale’s application” in United States v. AT&T, in which the court alleged shortcomings in the application of the scale, but made no reference to a body of evidence supporting such concerns.

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Befurt R, Silk AJ