Impression management – definition and example

Impression management is a process in which individuals try to influence the perceptions people have about something, a person, or an event.

Impression management may be a conscious or subconscious process. If you are an impression management professional, you attempt to influence the observations and opinions that consumers have of your products.

Put simply; effective impression management boosts sales.

In most cases, people who manage impressions are trying to align other people’s perceptions with their goals.

We use impression management a lot in business. However, we also use it in everyday life. We use it with our friends, work colleagues. We also use it with our family members.

Impression management
In business, impression management is all about getting people to focus on what is good about a product, and ignore what is bad about it.

Impression management – teenagers

For example, a teenage girl might only share good things about her boyfriend with her parents. She does this because she wants their perception of him to be a good one.

She knows that if they like him, they have a better chance of remaining together. has the following definition of the term:

“A process whereby someone tries to influence the observations and opinions of others about something.”

“In a typical impression management process within a business, a manager might attempt to regulate and control information n their interactions with staff or the general public.”

The manager controls and regulates information because he wants to give people the most favorable impression of the company.

Managing impressions in business

The most common kind of impression management in business is the presentation of merchandise, i.e., advertising. Advertising is the business of attracting consumers’ attention and encouraging them to buy something.

Every business in the world, if it aims to thrive, markets its products in the best possible light. If I sell chocolate cakes, for example, I focus on their delicious taste and wholesome ingredients.

I am definitely not going to focus on how chocolate cakes can make people fat and ruin their teeth.

Managing impressions represents a major part of marketing and advertising executives’ duties. Their job is to create impressions in the minds of consumers, i.e., make people like their products.

Above all, they want these impressions to boost their company’s revenue figures. Revenue refers to the money a business receives from the sale of goods or services.

Not only do marketing and advertising executives create impressions, but they also manage them.

MBASkool says the following regarding business people and impression management:

“(They) project and market their product in the best light possible.”

“Their job is to manage creating an impression in the minds of the consumers in the best possible way which boosts the revenue figures of the organization.”