Cross Cultural Marketing

Topics: Mobile phone, IPhone, Motorola Pages: 3 (358 words) Published: October 16, 2012
Cross-cultural marketing can be defined as the effort to determine to what extent

the consumers of two or more nations are similar or different. In order for marketers to

become successful, they must understand the psychological, social, and cultural aspects of

foreign consumers that they wish to target. Marketers must focus on the differences between

communication styles, as well as needs, among members of different cultures. When making

decisions, consumer behavior is vital and must be taken into account. The differences in

consumer behavior across cultures may affect the marketing mix strategy, as illustrated in two

cases: 1) Japan to Apple’s iPhone: “No Thanks!” and 2) Would Mickey Mouse eat shark’s fin

soup?

Once Apple released a new version of the iPhone in 2008, almost instantly, it gained

popularity all around the globe—except in Japan. Some Apple analysts estimated that its latest

iPhone would sell a million units in Japan. Shockingly, revised estimates cut the number to

almost half of the original. Though the iPhone offered many features such as use of the 3G

network and touch screen, Japan displayed little interest.

For many years, the Japanese mobile market developed independently from the rest

of the world. They had strong partnerships between the carrier and the manufactures, aiding

them in the development of smart phones with high functionality. Thus, 3G access has been a

standard feature on Japanese cell phones for several years. In Japan, high-quality screens are a

selling point mostly because the Japanese are huge fans of mobile television. Screen quality is

so important that cell phone manufacturers have begun branding their phones with the same way

they do for their televisions—Viera for Panasonic, Aquos for Sharp, and Bravia for Sony. That

way, consumers would invest in mobile phones with that particular brand. Therefore, a high-

quality screen is valued much more than a touch...
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