International Culture in Marketing
It has become increasingly popular for organizations to take their products and marketing strategies global. As they begin to integrate into these new markets they will be faced with many challenges. One of which is culture. Culture can be defined as, “The quality in a person or society that arises from a concern for what is regarded as excellent in arts, letters, manners, scholarly pursuits” (Dictionary.com, 2011). This paper highlights the impact culture has on marketers in foreign markets. Culture truly is a force to be reckoned with.
Identification of the Issue
Companies are constantly looking to expand and improve upon their business. This has caused businesses to spread their operations all throughout the world, thus creating global businesses. Global businesses must operate and market their products in all different parts of the world. When marketing globally, culture is a constant factor. Culture can be defined as, “The quality in a person or society that arises from a concern for what is regarded as excellent in arts, letters, manners, scholarly pursuits” (Dictionary.com, 2011). Businesses must take culture into account in many different ways when marketing to these new and unique places because culture is quite possible the most important factor when marketing internationally. Normally, when a business is marketing a new product, they are trying to implement change. These changes are usually met with resistance rather than general acceptance most of the time (Cojocaru, 2010). This brings forth a great challenge for all marketers. Marketers must recognize these obstacles when planning their strategy. Besides cultural recognition, the synchronization of the marketing company’s culture and the target market culture is imperative (Cojocaru, 2010). Thus, this brings the challenge of allowing the local culture to prevail, while the marketing company’s strategy succeeds. When it comes to marketing a product internationally, culture is the most important factor.
It is becoming more and more popular for emerging companies to take their products global (Khavul, Peterson, Mullens, & Rasheed, 2010). Once companies have established themselves in their home countries, they often look to begin to conduct business internationally. There are many different factors that influence global business. One major factor that influences global businesses is culture. By definition culture is conservative and is resistant to changes (Cojocaru, 2010). A change in culture is generally one of the toughest obstacles organizations will meet when conducting business globally. The degree of resistance differs in each case, some cultures will adapt to change whereas other will resist so strongly that it will never change (Cojocaru, 2010). The responsibility of change and its responses are very relevant to those in marketing, because efforts of marketers are generally much more than cultural innovation (Cojocaru, 2010). Monica Cojocaru states, “Beyond culture recognition, analysis and culture, harmonization between the company culture and the domestic market culture is required” (Cojocaru, 2010). The extreme task is to match the firm’s corporate culture with that of the target market’s culture. Monica Cojocaru also states, “One must never lost sight of its own culture, both at the firm and country of origin level, and it is necessary to act with determination to alter the cultural change of target markets (Cojocaru, 2010).” The correct combination can equal a successful venture into international markets. Brands that are available in a vast array of countries and easily recognized are described as global brands (Dimofte, Johansson, & Bagozzi, 2010). The general consensus is that global brands bring a higher value, enjoy a large reputation, and are generally better than local brands (Dimofte, Johansson, & Bagozzi, 2010). Findings have also suggested that...
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