Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Smith, L. George (Lloyd George), 1930-||Hendrickson, William J.

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Marketing


Tractor industry--Illinois--De Kalb County


The purpose of this investigation was to enhance understanding of the entire decision process utilized by DeKalb County, Illinois farmers in the purchase of tractors, with the further hope that the acquired insight will be valuable to both tractor dealers and manufacturers in designing effective marketing programs. Data were compiled from personally conducted interviews with 30 randomly selected DeKalb County, Illinois farmers who made tractor purchases in the period from August 1965 to August 1966. Intensive questioning of all potentially relevant factors bearing upon selective purchase decisions characterized the interviews, which lasted from 45 minutes to over an hour and 15 minutes. Prom data collected it was possible to study the causal factors influencing the purchase of various brands of tractors. The factors examined in this study were information sources, dealer's proximity, dealer's pre-sale and postsale service, the buyer-dealer personal relationship, guarantee, the physical product, and price. The basic findings and conclusions of this investigation suggest that selective tractor purchases are affected by a set of factors peculiar to industrial goods as a whole. There was clear evidence that country-life idiosyncracies were linked to the decision process whereby one brand of tractor was selected rather than another. Thus, it came as no surprise that the manner in which the farmers undertook their tractor purchase had only a semblance to the purported "rational" approach of other traditional industrial buyers. The marketing strategy implications arising from this anomalous situation are challenging ones for marketing-management action.


Includes bibliographical references.


viii, 123 pages




Northern Illinois University

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