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CHAPTER

THIRTEEN
Cross-Cultural Consumer
Behavior: An
International Perspective
Learning Objectives
1. To Understand the Importance of Formulating an
Appropriate Multinational or Global Marketing
Strategy.
2. To Understand How to Study the Differences Among
Cultures While Developing Marketing Strategies.
3. To Understand How Consumer-Related Factors
Impact a Firm’s Decision to Select a Global, Local, or
Mixed Marketing Strategy.
4. To Understand How Lifestyle and Psychographic
Segmentation Can Be Used.

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Under What Circumstances Would This English-Language Ad Attract
Affluent Consumers from Largely
Non-English Speaking Countries?

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If They Frequently Visit the United States
and Regularly Read American Upscale Magazines

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Who is the target for this product?
Global Generations of with pride in heritage!

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The Imperative to Be Multinational
• Global Trade
Agreements
– EU
– NAFTA
• Winning Emerging
Markets
• Acquiring Exposure to
Other Cultures
• Country-of-origin Effects

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Cross-Cultural Influences
• Cross-cultural differences
– Do not always coincide with national
borders
– Not always clearly demarcated by
national borders
– Marketers must consider them when
developing marketing strategies for
foreign markets
• Consumption culture
• Self-concept
• Similar cross-cultural changes
• Materialism
– Possessiveness
– Envy
– Non-generosity
• Marketing implications
Cross-Cultural Marketing
• Cross-cultural marketing is international marketing on a personal
level. It means considering cultural differences when planning
marketing campaigns and media; realizing the need for a balance
between localization and globalization; and most importantly,
implementing strategies that respect differences while seeking to
unify brand messages
• Cross-cultural marketing is defined as “the effort to determine to
what extent the consumers of two or more nations are similar or
different. This will facilitate marketers to understand the
psychological, social and cultural aspects of foreign consumers
they wish to target, so as to design effective marketing strategies
for each of the specific national markets involved.”
Elements of Cross-Cultural Marketing

• Culture impacts on Marketing (International Vs.


Domestic)
• Cross-cultural dimensions of marketing research
• Cross-cultural dimensions of marketing mix
• Cross-cultural marketing education and training
• Cross-cultural practice in electronic marketing
• Hofstede Cultural dimensions
The Best Global Brands - Table 13.1
1. Coca-Cola
2. IBM
3. Microsoft
4. GE
5. Nokia
6. Toyota
7. Intel
8. McDonald’s
9. Disney
10.Google

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Discussion Questions
• What challenges may Toyota have faced to get
their status as one of the top brands?
• What might they have done right in their
marketing strategy to achieve this status?
Consider the 4Ps.

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Country of Origin Effects:
Positive
• Many consumers may take into consideration
the country of origin of a product.
• Country-of-origin commonly:
– France = wine, fashion, perfume
– Italy = pasta, designer clothing, furniture, shoes,
and sports cars
– Japan = cameras and consumer electronics
– Germany = cars, tools, and machinery

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Country of Origin Effects:
Negative
• Some consumers have animosity toward a country
– People’s Republic of China has some animosity to Japan
– Jewish consumers avoid German products
– New Zealand and Australian consumers boycott French
products

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Why Do Most Global
Airlines Stress Pampering
Business Travelers in Their Ads?

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Upscale International Business
Travelers Share Much in Common.

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Other Country-of-Origin Effects
• Mexican study uncovered:
– Country-of-design (COD)
– Country-of-assembly (COA)
– Country-of-parts (COP)

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Conceptual Model of COD and COM
Figure 13.2

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The effort to
determine to what
Cross-Cultural
extent the
Consumer
consumers of two
Analysis
or more nations are
similar or different.

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Cross-cultural Analysis

TABLE 12.2
Cross-Cultural Consumer Analysis

Issues
 Similarities and differences  The greater the similarity
among people between nations, the more
feasible to use relatively
 The growing global middle
similar marketing strategies
class
 Marketers often speak to
 The global teen market the same “types” of
 Acculturation consumers globally (For e.g.
the ‘we’ & ‘I’ cultures

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Discussion Questions

 Are people becoming more similar?


 Why or why not?

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Similarities and Differences

TABLE 12.3
Consumer Styles
TABLE 12.4

TABLE 12.5
Cross-Cultural Consumer Analysis

Issues
 Similarities and
differences among people
 Growing in Asia, South
 The growing global
America, and Eastern
middle class
Europe
 The global teen market  Marketers should focus
 Acculturation on these markets

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Middle Class Growth

•Middle Class growth


By 2020, the middle class will grow from
30% to 52% of the world’s population.
By 2025, China will have the world’s largest
middle class
By 2025, India’s middle class will be 10
times larger than it currently is
Cross-Cultural Consumer Analysis

Issues
 Similarities and  There has been growth in
differences among people an affluent global teenage
and young adult market.
 The growing global
 They appear to have
middle class
similar interests, desires,
 The global teen market and consumption behavior
 Acculturation no matter where they live.

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Global Teen Market

TABLE 12.9

•Global Teen Market – similar interests, desires and


consumption behavior
Cross-Cultural Consumer Analysis

Issues
 Similarities and  The process by which
differences among marketers learn—via
people cross-cultural analysis—
 The growing global about the values, beliefs,
middle class and customs of other
cultures and then apply
 The global teen market this knowledge to
 Acculturation marketing products
internationally

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Acculturation: Dual Learning Process

1. Marketers learn everything relevant about


the product/product category in the chosen
market
2. Marketers must persuade/teach members of
the chosen market to change traditional ways
of doing things and adopt the new product
Measures of Cross-Cultural Aspects

•Product quality judgments


•Willingness to buy products
•Ethnocentrism
•Perceptions of consumption culture
•Acculturation
•Ethnic self-identification
•National self-identification
Measures of Cross-Cultural Aspects

Attitudes toward local and global products (Agree/Disagree)


•Entertainment
e.g. I enjoy entertainment that I think is popular in many countries around the world more than traditional
entertainment that is popular in my own country.

•Furnishings
e.g. I prefer to have home furnishings that are traditional in my country rather than furnishings that I think are
popular in many countries around the world.

•Food
e.g. I enjoy foods that I think are popular in many countries around the world more than my own country’s
traditional foods.

•Lifestyles
e.g. I prefer to have a lifestyle that is traditional in my own country rather than one that I think is similar to the
lifestyle of consumers in many countries around the world.

•Brands
e.g. I prefer to buy brands that I think are bought by consumers in many countries around the world rather than
local brands that are sold only in my country.
Measures of Cross-Cultural Aspects

•Independence •Masculinity
•Interdependence •Gender equality
•Power •Tradition
•Social inequality •Prudence
•Risk aversion •Ethnocentrism
•Ambiguity tolerance •Innovativeness
Consumer Research Difficulties
FACTORS EXAMPLES
Differences in culture Illegal to stop people on streets and
focus groups impractical in Saudi
Arabia

Differences in marketing research Russia and China have limited


information information regarding consumer
statistics

Differences in appropriate scales of A 10- or 20- point scale may be


measurement needed in other countries (vs. 5 to
7- point scale in the U. S.)

Differences in the availability of Telephone interviewing services may


research facilities not be available in particular
countries of the world
Cross-Cultural behavioral Caveats!

 In the U.K. it is deemed disrespectful not to finish a


meal provided by your host…whereas in China, if
you do, it is questioning the generosity of your host
 In Saudi Arabia, refusal to drink a cup of coffee
when offered can stall business negotiations
 Within the Muslim tradition, the dog is considered
a “dirty” animal, so portraying it as “man’s best
friend” in an advertisement is counter-productive.
 White symbols purity in the U.S., it is a symbol of
death in China

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Coke gets it wrong

 The name Coca-Cola in China was first rendered as Ke-kou-ke-la.


Unfortunately, the Coke company did not discover until after
thousands of signs had been printed that the phrase means “bite
the wax tadpole” or “female horse stuffed with wax” depending
on the dialect.

Then Coke gets it right?


• Coke then researched 40,000 Chinese characters
and found a close phonetic equivalent “ko-kou-ko-le”,
which can be loosely translated as “happiness in the
mouth”.
Other Linguistic Barrier Examples

 The slogan “Chevy Runs Deep” did not translate well in some
languages. The company replaced it with the slogan “Find New
Roads” because the car represents different things to different
people, a theme that resonates with consumers around the world.
 When General Motors introduced the Chevy Nova in South
America, it was apparently unaware that “no va” means “it won’t
go.” After the company figured out why it was not selling any of
these cars, it renamed the car in its Spanish markets as the Caribe.
 American Motors tried to market its new car, the Matador, based
on the image of courage and strength. However, in Puerto Rico the
name means "killer" and was not popular on the hazardous roads
in the country.
Other Major MNCs Cultural Mistakes!

 "Traficante“, an Italian mineral water found a great reception in


Spain's underworld. In Spanish it translates as "drug dealer".
 In Taiwan, the translation of the Pepsi slogan “Come alive with
the Pepsi Generation” came out as “Pepsi will bring your
ancestors back from the dead.”
 Kellogg had to rename its Bran Buds cereal in Sweden when it
discovered that the name roughly translated to "burned farmer."
 Also in Chinese, the Kentucky Fried Chicken slogan “finger-lickin’
good” came out as “eat your fingers off.”
 The soft drink Fresca was being promoted by a saleswoman in
Mexico. She was surprised that her sales pitch was greeted with
laughter, and later embarrassed when she learned that fresca is a
slang for "lesbian."
More Cross-Cultural Blunders!

 In 2002, Umbro the UK sports manufacturer had to withdraw its


new trainers (sneakers) called the Zyklon. The firm received
complaints from many organizations and individuals as it was the
name of the gas used by the Nazi regime to murder millions of
Jews in concentration camps.
 A golf ball manufacturing company packaged golf balls in packs of
four for convenient purchase in Japan. Unfortunately,
pronunciation of the word "four" in Japanese sounds like the word
"death" and items packaged in fours are unpopular.
 When Parker Pen marketed a ballpoint pen in Mexico, its ads were
supposed to say “It won’t leak in your pocket and embarrass you”.
However, the company mistakenly thought the Spanish word
“embararzar” meant embarrass. Instead the ads said that “It won’t
leak in your pocket and make you pregnant”.
Cross-Cultural Blunders contd…

 There are several examples of companies getting


tangled up with bad translations of products due to
the word "mist". We had "Irish Mist" (an alcoholic
drink), "Mist Stick" (a curling iron from Clairol) and
"Silver Mist" (Rolls Royce car) all flopping as "mist" in
German means dung/manure. Fancy a glass of Irish
dung?
 Pepsodent tried to sell its toothpaste in Southeast
Asia by emphasizing that it "whitens your teeth." They
found out that the local natives chew betel nuts and
discolored teeth was considered attractive.
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Guidelines to minimize cross-cultural mistakes

 Develop cultural empathy (recognize, understand and


respect another’s culture)
 Be culturally neutral and realize that the difference is not
necessarily better or worse
 Never assume transferability of a concept from one
culture to another
 Get cultural informants involved into decision-makings
Some Cross-Cultural Insights!

 Packaging, seen as a reflection of the quality of the “real” product,


is considerably more important in Asia than in the U.S., where
there is a tendency to focus on the contents which “really count.”
 Many cultures observe significantly greater levels of formality than
that typical in the U.S., and Japanese negotiator tend to observe
long silent pauses as a speaker’s point is considered.
 In the U.S. and much of Europe, agreements are typically rather
precise and contractual in nature; in Asia, there is a greater
tendency to settle issues as they come up
 In some cultures, gifts should be presented in private to avoid
embarrassing the recipient; in others, the gift should be made
publicly to ensure that no perception of secret bribery could be
made.
Alternative Multinational Strategies: Global
Versus Local

 Favoring a Global Brand


 Are Global Brands Different?
 Multinational Reactions to Brand Extensions
 Adaptive Global Marketing
 Frameworks for Assessing Multinational Strategies

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Products that are
manufactured,
packaged, and
Global
positioned the same
Brands
way regardless of the
country in which they
are sold.

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Cross-Border Diffusion of Popular Culture

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Top Global Brands and Appeals

TABLE 12.7
Top Global Brands (cont.)
Brand Shares

TABLE 12.8
Are Global Brands Different?

•Characteristics
 Quality Signal
 Global Myth
 Social Responsibility

•Intra-country consumer segments


 Global Citizens (Socially responsible)
 Global Dreamers (quality concerns only)
 Antiglobals (prefer local brands)
 Global Agnostics (evaluate both equally)
Why Does One of the World’s Most Highly Regarded
Wristwatch Brands Use a Single Global Advertising
Strategy (Only Varying the Language)?

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They Speak to Them in Their Own Language
to Maximize their “Comfort Zone.”

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Multinational Reactions to Brand Extensions

 A global brand does not always have success with brand


extensions
 Example Coke brand extension – Coke popcorn
 Eastern culture saw fit and accepted the brand extension
 Western culture did not see fit
 Kodak greeting cards and Mercedes Benz watches
garnered equal responses from both the cultural groups
 Eastern culture is known to be holistic in their thinking
than their western counterparts
 Corporate reputation did play a role in judging the ‘fit’ in
brand extensions by Easterners
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Adaptive Global Marketing

 Adaptation of advertising message to specific values of


particular cultures
 McDonald’s uses localization
 Example Ronald McDonald is Donald McDonald in Japan
 Japanese menu includes corn soup and green tea milkshakes
 Often best to combine global and local marketing
strategies

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Customization Examples

•McDonald’s
 Japan: Donald McDonald vs. Ronald McDonald
 Japan: Corn soup and green tea milkshakes
 Sweden: Softer design and woodcut packaging
 France: McBaguette
 Philippines: Rice and spaghetti as side dishes

•PizzaHut Casual Dining in China


•Starbucks coffee in Europe
•Sunglasses for Chinese people
Framework for Assessing Multinational
Strategies

 Global
 Local
 Mixed

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A Framework for Global Marketing Strategies

COMMUNICATON
STRATEGY

PRODUCT STANDARDIZED LOCALIZED


STRATEGY COMMUNICATIONS COMMUNICATIONS

STANDARDIZED Global strategy: Mixed Strategy:


PRODUCT Uniform Product/ Uniform Uniform Product/
Message Customized Message

LOCALIZED Mixed strategy: Local Strategy:


PRODUCT Customized Product/ Customized Product/
Uniform Message Customized Message

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Cross-Cultural Psychographic Segmentation

 The only ultimate truth possible is that humans are both


deeply the same and obviously different.
 For example, the percent of the U.S. female population
that works outside the home is the same as the percent
of the Japanese female population.
 But when we look at the psychographics of these groups,
we find that they have very different consumer behavior
and attitudes to certain products.

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Psychographic Segmentation
Six Global Consumer Segments

Strivers Devouts

Altruists Intimates

Fun
Creatives
Seekers
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HOFSTEDE’S DIMENSIONS OF CULTURE
 What works in one location may or may not work
somewhere else. The questions are,
 How can I come to understand these cultural differences?"
 Are we relegated to learning from our mistakes or are
there generalized guidelines to follow?
 Fortunately, a psychologist named Dr Geert Hofstede
asked himself this question in the 1970s and …..
 Result was an internationally standardized Model of
Cultural Dimensions

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Explanation & Illustration
THE FIFTH DIMENSION

 Long-Term Orientation (LTO) versus


short-term orientation: this fifth dimension
was found in a study among students in 23
countries around the world, using a
questionnaire designed by Chinese scholars
 Values associated with Long Term
Orientation are thrift and perseverance;
values associated with Short Term
Orientation are respect for tradition, fulfilling
social obligations, and protecting one's 'face'.
INDIA
CHINA
USA
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