Consumer Behavior in Global Markets

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Consumer behavior in global markets: the A-B-C-D paradigm and its application to eastern Europe and the Third World P.S. Raju

Introduction In the marketing literature a considerable amount of attention has been devoted to two groups of countries: the Third World countries and the former socialist countries of eastern Europe. Although there is no one term that precisely describes all the countries in this combined set, most of these countries are characterized as “less developed countries” by the International Development Association (IDA) and as “developing markets” in prominent textbooks of international marketing (Cateora, 1990). Hence the term “developing countries” is used in this article when alluding to both groups of countries jointly. New markets Over 40% of US exports of manufactured goods are to developing countries, and prominent companies in the USA, Europe and Japan have made countries like South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Poland their top priority for the future (Business Week, 1994a; Cateora, 1990, p. 289). Despite this trend, consumer behavior in global markets is a topic that is not well understood by marketers. The focus of this article is to provide a comprehensive view of consumer behavior in global markets, especially in relation to the countries of eastern Europe and the Third World. Third World countries, like Brazil, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and India, have made considerable progress in the last few years. The market growth between 1981 and 1986 for selected Third World countries was 24.3% for Brazil, 44.9% for China and 41.3% for India, as compared with 8.4% for the USA and 12.3% for Japan (Cateora, 1990, p. 321). Several companies such as PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Sony and Nestlé already operate in Third World countries, and others, like GE, see their entry into Third World markets no longer as a matter of choice (Business Week, 1993a). Eastern Europe, with a population of approximately 430 million, is...
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