Introduced to Thailand for the first time in February of 2006, Zara today has three stores located in the three most luxurious malls of Bangkok. Zara’s much anticipated opening was very well received by the Thai community. This study investigates views from both Zara and its customers in order to identify important issues regarding consumer’s interaction with Zara and vice versa.
An in-depth interview with Zara’s brand manager introduced three main issues concerning value perception from consumers, their expectations, and differences in culture norm on some of the consumers. Three more issues were developed through basic analysis on these issues that were presented by the brand manager to challenge Zara’s beliefs and strategies in the Thai market. The potential issues are whether Zara can be a brand for everyone as it is in developed countries, if there is too much reliance on one brand manager, and whether their policy of zero advertisement is appropriate here.
A survey was conducted with a sample size of 79 to test the significance of these issues and whether the Zara understands its Thai consumer base accurately. While all issues discovered from Zara were consistent with what consumers see as problems, Zara’s approaches to the issues are not what consumers look for. Lastly, recommendations were generated to resolve the three main areas of concerns. Mainly they are targeted to create more brand awareness and exposure, develop better means of communication with customers, adjust the level of expectations to make them more coherent, and minimize the cultural differences between Zara and Thailand.
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