3.6 Impacts on Global Marketing

While the same basic domestic marketing principles apply to global marketing, there are additional layers of complexity for marketers to consider when working across markets in different countries and world regions. Much of this complexity centres the need to develop a keen understanding of the consumer and the target market—a task essential for effective marketing, whether global or domestic. But in the global environment, there are additional questions to ask and issues to consider in order to fully appreciate the consumer and the marketing opportunities in a target market.

Additional complexity resides in the business environment created by government, regulatory bodies, and other societal institutions that shape the behaviours of individuals and institutions. This business environment is somewhat unique to every country and target market. Understanding these dynamics can help marketers work more effectively to achieve their organizations’ business objectives.

Cross-cultural marketing is defined as the process of marketing among consumers whose culture differs from that of the marketer’s own culture; such as language, religion, social norms and values, education and living style (Vaddadi & Thandava, 2019).

If Marketers want to succeed in a foreign market, they must design a marketing mix that meets the cultural expectations of that new market’s consumers. It involves recognizing that people all over the world have different needs and expectations. For a multicultural marketing strategy to succeed, cultural differences must be identified, understood and respected.

The following aspects are considered vital for a company to succeed in doing business globally:

  • culture impacts on marketing (international versus domestic)
  • cross-cultural dimensions of marketing research
  • cross-cultural aspects of the marketing mix (products, price, promotion, and place)
  • cross-cultural marketing education and professional training
  • and cross-cultural practice in electronic marketing (Vaddadi & Thandava, 2019).

To overcome cross-cultural differences and the possibility of cross-cultural marketing mistakes, companies need to study and understand the foreign culture they are entering. There needs to be a high level of appreciation and respect for the consumers’ religion and culture. They also need to understand and study the language differences and how this can affect translated products or slogans.

Student Perspective: McDonald’s

Glocalization in France: McDonalds and their Croque McDo
Glocalization in France: McDonalds and their Croque McDo” by Richard Allaway, CC BY 2.0

McDonald’s has done a great job introducing its chain around the world and moving into numerous markets and cultures. One location that I think is a great example of cross-cultural marketing is McDonald’s in France. The French have a very different culture than the United States. They live their life at a much slower pace and their meals are more about socializing and enjoying the time with people rather than eating and getting out. McDonald’s has created some new menu items for their French locations such as an Alpine burger and the McBaguette. McDonald’s also designed the French chains so that they are more spacious and decorated tastefully so that it does encourage the French to sit down and enjoy their meal at their own pace. There are also separate McCafe locations around France that are decorated with big comfortable chairs and couches to encourage socialization. In addition, the coffee is served in real coffee mugs and not it to-go cups.

Before entering the country, McDonald’s surely did their research because they not only added French-like items to the menu, but they also incorporated a French-like atmosphere. I think this is a very good example of cross-cultural marketing because these locations really encourage a dine-in and more relaxed experience compared to the fast pace take-out that Americans are used to. Many French people have actually commented on the fact that McDonald’s in France does not feel like a fast-food restaurant at all. With this information, I think it is easy to say that their research and cross-cultural marketing plan for France has been a success.

Courtney Kent

Class of 2020

Core Principles of International Marketing – Chapter 3.1 by Babu John Mariadoss is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Core Principles of International Marketing – Chapter 3.3 – Student Perspective by Babu John Mariadoss is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.


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Global Marketing In a Digital World Copyright © 2022 by Lina Manuel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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