As described in our book, self concept, or self perception is consumers perceive themselvels. Self-concept includes, attitudes, perceptions, beliefs, and self evaluations. Although self concept may change, the change is often gradual. Through self concept, people define their identity, which in turn provides for consistent and coherent behavior.
Self concept combines two different types of self image. The first is ideal self image, which is the way an individual would like to be perceived. The second is real self image, which is how an individual actually perceives himself or herself. In today's society, we generally try to raise our real self-image toward our ideal self image or at least narrow the gap between them. An example of this would be someone who sees herself as a trendsetter, and wouldn't buy clothing that doesn't project a contemporary image.
Can any of you think of a certain time that you wanted to buy a product to raise your real self-image? If so, did you end up buying the product?