Conspicuous consumption is a concept that has stood the test of time and proven its validity and importance in terms of human consumption. This research paper has taken the initiative to analyse the conspicuous consumption behaviour of Sri Lankan managers in terms of mobile phone preference and usage. The answers as to how they employ mobile phones for conspicuous consumption and the reasons as to why they engage in the conspicuous consumption of mobile phones are discussed and analysed in this research. To seek insight into this phenomenon, the research has taken a qualitative approach, using interviews to collect data for the research and thematic analysis to develop research findings. The research reveals that mobile phone is conspicuously consumed by Sri Lankan managers through its features, the occasion it is used in, the brand and the outer aesthetic of the mobile phone. Mobile phones are conspicuously consumed by Sri Lankan managers to maintain current and higher levels of wealth and status. It is also incentivised by psychological attributes such as personal achievement, personality, and attitudes and how one’s self and self-concept is developed. Brand variables such as brand image, brand familiarity, perceived brand quality and brand loyalty, along with the interest in expressing their uniqueness, also affect this intention. Interpersonal influences, as well as interest in keeping up with technology and market demand also play a hand in pushing managers towards conspicuous consumption of mobile phones. With these revelations, mobile phone companies will be able to develop suitable branding and positioning strategies for their products.
Keywords: Conspicuous Consumption, Status Consumption, Hedonism, Mobile Phones