Ethnic Marketing and the Different Cultural Dimensions

Topics: Marketing, Culture, Cross-cultural communication Pages: 10 (2889 words) Published: February 11, 2012
1. Introduction

The man in his desire to know, measure and control everything has develop remarkable capacity for the study of the phenomena that occur. The positive paradigm of approaching the discovery of reality has certainly shown multiple benefits, as their thoroughness, accuracy, statistical and control variables among many other factors allowed drawing conclusions valuable in different areas of knowledge and progress.

This way of studying sees appropriate precisely because of its benefits in controlling and monitoring. However, this puts to manifest that human beings should not be mere variables to be studied, rather, people with specific roles that need to be understood and measured in some respects but not in all. Reference to Geertz shows that the analysis of culture doesn't has to be an experimental science in search of laws, but an interpretative science is search of meanings.

The work of Lindridge & Dibb found that a new school of thought has emerged in marketing that sees marketing as a social process where culture plays a role as the backdrop for the development of consumption pattern of certain products and services. They have been gaining a symbolism not imagined before; in this new tendency, marketing is part of a given culture (Farmer, 1981).

2. Marketing to multicultural audiences

Marketing to multicultural audiences has relied on ethnicity as a historical construct from the principles that operate within each human group. According to Schein culture with all it symbolism its printed in human behavior and the ethnic marketing begins to unravel the unknowns behind the values and beliefs as well as the core or the cultural roots. This new approach of marketing which segments culture is breaking the traditional approach of marketing that tries to reduce it to an universal formula with superficial variations (Gronroos, 1997) without paying attention to the adjustments that need to be made to function in today's new hypercompetitive (Child, 2005) environment.

2.1 Ethnicity
Despite the different approaches made in the social sciences to the issue of ethnicity. They continue to be vast and complex, professionals on marketing have preferred anthropological and sociological studies to explain the phenomenon of ethnicity. From a marketing perspective, the studies about ethnicity have been closely tied to consumer behavior but, the majority have involved with ethnic groups living in developed countries and often they don't evaluate anything that is not culturally relevant outside their own culture (Costa & Bamossy, 1995). However, the popularity of ethnicity as a theoretical construct according to Banton (2011) is because the ethnicity concept arranges people separating them by their status, where groups are formed according to differences or attributes of common origin.

2.2 Etnoconsumerism
Venkatesh gather consumer consumption data in cultural, social and individuals aspects in the same analytical effort and proposed "Ethnoconsumerism"(1995), as the study of consumption from the viewpoint of the social or cultural group to which one belongs. This new paradigm in consumer behavior uses theoretical categories within a given culture and studies the consumption utilizing their behavior and the way one thinks. Ethnos, nation or group is used in its classical sense as a group of cultural practices of a given culture. However, the notion of consumer not just evaluates their value system, beliefs, symbols, rituals and daily practices the Ethnoconsumerism forces researchers to look at the individual as a cultural being, as a part of culture of a subculture and other kind of group affiliations (Venkatesh, 1995).

The opinion of Davies & Fitchett is that Ethnoconsumerism joint the study of the consumer value systems and their belief systems, rituals and daily practices, all interwoven in a holistic view of the consumer with several different levels. These levels of study include symbolic...

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