The Hofstede model has some serious negative correlations with the Globe study that should be reconciled. The Hofstede model gives a generic six category description of cultural among individual countries for business to get a very basic idea of differences. The uncertainty avoidance dimension in the two studies, Hofstede versus Globe that is, calls into question the validity of the Hofstede model and mentions caution to using the defined characteristics to derive decisions from.
Personally, I do not quite agree with some of the definitions such as masculinity among nations. Japan is rated very high and yet as a society they are passive when compared in person to an American. I was in the military, stationed in Japan for over one year which I base my experience on. Sure, the older generation expected wives to walk behind the husband ten feet at all times, which seems disconnected as a community but perhaps this is what Hofstede sees as masculine. Diminutive stature with low muscles mass hardly seems like a overly testosterone filled society. I just do not buy the entire model. Can somebody sway my opinion and illuminate what I cannot see?
Today, our rights to freedom of speech is on assault. No longer can truthful conversations occur among friends without citizens betraying their own cultural to pursue advancing minority cultures with education, employment, income redistribution, and even their own women. Most global media giants are created and grown by European populations among a few continents and yet the ideology is to censor their own cultural from discussing events in the community, nation, and the world. Facebook, Google, Instagram, and YouTube are banning accounts with the wrong type of vision of multiculturalism. But it is entirely acceptable for violent groups such as Antifa to assault citizens. Even among college campuses this narrative is seen among young adults. Of course, all liberals turn conservative as soon as they begin paying taxes in the tens of thousands. It is always easiest to spend other peoples money.
Diamond and Silk, a very funny duo, also an unlikely supporter of conservatism according to the liberal media, was banned from Facebook because of the danger they represent to their community. That is some funny and absurd lies. Facebook simply cannot let black Americans get the message out that the Democrats are not delivering on promises to the minority community. What happened to allegiance to the country which citizens reside? Why the allegiance to foreign countries?
Nike has turned its back on American ideals, values, and even its citizens that paid for their success for more than thirty years. Nike has turned its marketing campaign to bring in the NFL once-a-star, Colon Kaepernick, to shove anti-patriotism into corporate backed mainstream. America, prior to the unauthorized mass migration by its own paying citizens, used to have a long history of men serving in the military prior to entering the workforce. In the last forty years, men who have served their duty to their country has gone from forty percent to slightly less than ten percent in 2018. Without a country with more military service among its men, the men we are turning out are beta-males (weak, testosterone-less males that are incapable of defending their own women from criminals or invaders) and foreigners with no allegiance to the constitution which made the economy possible. Nike not only turns un-American in this manner but also has the moral-less decision making to outsource jobs to make use of child labor in foreign markets(until caught at least). Nike continues to have only African athletes modeling their shoes and appearing in their ads all the while trying to convince European men that these shoes will help them. Nike’s participation with sleazy lawyer, Michael Avanatti is pretty embarrassing as well and continues to show a pattern of gutter-sniping.
There is a progressive, liberal decay in society of Europeans on multiple continents where men with DNA that creates better methods in all aspects focused on have honest altruism. This altruism is used a weapon to deceive men into feeling guilty and their women into interracial coupling to destroy their own ancestral line. The phrase “It is all fun and games until somebody gets hurt” rings among rumor circles. How long will people pay for products by corporations that choose to betray the base consumer that brought them success? Addidas makes a better running shoe anyway.
In today’s consumer culture, people often times have several choices at their fingertips, whether it be for clothing, fast food, cars, you name it. Because of this, it is becoming more important than ever for brands to focus on customer retention and customer loyalty.
Transparency is an important way of doing this. In fact, a survey showed that 94 percentof consumers are more likely to be loyal to brands that show transparency in as a part of their marketing efforts.
“Transparency marketing is all about letting your fans, customers and leads into your world so they know you and feel your brand’s human side.”
– Luis Congdon, Entrepreneur.com Guest Writer
Companies are embracing this new tactic of transparency left and right. Here are a few of the most prominent brands that have been successful doing this:
McDonald’s has been known for its poor rumors regarding its food. Between high preservatives and serving meats that are misleading, consumers have been wary of eating there for years. As a result, the brand created the “Our food. Your questions.” campaign, which allowed them to address these rumors head on.
They even went so far as to post a video from inside one of its beef processing plants, proving that the beef patties they serve are truly from cows, as opposed to cheaper alternatives. The campaign has been widely successful, with more than 42,000 questions posted by consumers and close to 4 million people visiting the site seeking answers to these questions. This shows how much their consumers value this transparency.
Since the beginning, Patagonia has been very open about its mission of sustainability and push for social change. They are consistently keeping up with the times in terms of sustainable practices, and they are open with their customer base about what they are doing.
They even go a step further, educating their customers so that the consumers themselves will be better equipped to make decisions that benefit the environment. One of the ways in which they have done this is through their Fair Trade campaign, which was prompting consumers to be more conscientious about where their clothing is coming from.
This transparency about their mission and dedication to living it out has allowed for consumers to put their trust in this brand, contributing largely to the success of Patagonia.
“Environmentally concerned consumers trust that Patagonia stands for a higher purpose than making money and are therefore emotionally inspired to support the brand, which embodies their values.”
-Catherine Morin, Writer for CRM.org
So how can companies work to improve their transparency?
Social media is one of the most prominent ways in which brands can improve their transparency. Social media marketing channels are the best platform for that personal connection. And as people no longer find their connection through products, this is more necessary than ever. Goals resonate with people. Stories resonate with people. Achievements that better the community resonate with people. This is what companies should focus on.
In a surveyof 1,000 United States adults, it was established that the top two means of displaying transparency on social media are admitting to mistakes and providing custoemrs with honest responses to their questions. These are the ways in which brands should begin building transparency for their consumers, if they have not done so already.
In the world of fast fashion, there are very few brand names that are widely recognized globally. Zara and H&M are considered the giants of the global fashion industry. Both companies in the past decade have put all their forces into getting their names out there, not just on a local level but a wide spread international level which in a way that created market entry barriers. Many clothing companies are trying to enter the market, and they may succeed on a local level. However, when it comes to branching out across boarders most of them fail to do so. There are a lot of factors that play into that, but the most important factor is them failing in distinguishing their name from other fast fashion companies. The core business of fast fashion retailers is designing and producing trendy clothes that come with a lower price tag that appeals to a wide demographic of costumes. The research and development cost for this type of business is extremely expensive, especially if the R&D had to be done on different regions of the world which vary in taste and preference. Uniqlo is considered one of the newest players in the industry. It is a Japanese company that was opened in 1984. Today, the company owns more than 1,900 stores across 18 markets. It is the largest clothing chain in Asia and the third largest globally, so what made Uniqlo stand out? Uniqlo takes slow and smart approaches when expanding into new markets while considering the unique needs of each market. This method may be the most successful way to enter into new markets, especially in an industry that highly depends on individuals’ tastes and needs. The company tries to find gaps in each market and then tries to fill those gaps. It also caters to each market’s taste and preference.
Innovation: Most fast fashion houses focus on women’s clothing. They would spend more than 80% of the R&D on their female customers. Uniqlo realized the lack of focus on men’s fashion and decided to devote more time, money and energy into catering its male customers. This issue is not prominent in Asia as it is in Europe and the United States. There is a huge gap when it comes to men’s fashion. Companies rarely invest in researching what male consumers preferences are. When Uniqlo first started doing that, they realized that a significant segment of men hate how classic t-shirt fits. They also prefer a more fitted clothes. Adaptation Localization is a crucial part of going global, especially in the fashion industry. Although, we consider the world one big town, and we see ourselves not so different from each other. There still is a difference between different regions of the world and the consumer’s need in each region. For instance, when they decided to open in East Asia, they introduced a new line, Hijab line, which caters to their female Muslim consumers. They also used a very famous Indonesian model, Hana Tajima, for their Hijab collection. After proving to be a huge success in East Asia, they started carrying the line in all their other stores around the world. I
Apple is an international brand that offers the same products accross different cultures. An iPhone in China looks like an iPhone sold in the US. Apple’s cross international marketing team aims to provide a consistent experience across different cultures. This is seemingly different from other brands who will completely customize their product offerings to cater to different cultures. Apple has stated that it is committed to “bringing the best user experience to its customers through its innovative hardware, software, and services”
Even with this consistency across products and even the look of the stores in different countries, apple does still pay attention to different cultures. One of the ways that it does this is customize its content toward different audiences. For example with their garage band software, they will add in culturally appropriate instruments depending on the audience. This ensures that even in different cultures, people can get the same brand experience across apple products.
Another important way that apple maintains the same experience across different cultures is to hire local translators and writers to ensure that the copy is written in the same effective manor in every language. This is important because many brands have translated things incorrectly and caused themselves major headaches when selling to another culture.
With these examples, we can see that while many brands go through radical strategies when selling to cross cultural markets, apple strives to maintain it’s core identity. An apple product in China looks the same as an apple product in Mexico, Russia, or the US. Not only that but the brand experience is maintained across all of these cultures. This cross cultural consistency is very refreshing and as we have seen with apples great success, it has been very effective.
A new marketing channel is entering the category and creating a name for itself. Brands now have to work harder to get the interest and attention of consumers, and with the many different channels available, they must be smart about where they invest their money and efforts. Due to the rise of “storytelling platforms” such as Snapchat, Instagram and Youtube, a new marketing channel has emerged and doesn’t look to be going anywhere anytime soon. That channel is Influencer Marketing.
What is Influencer Marketing?
Some readers may be thinking “isn’t influencer marketing just social media marketing?”, and though it may seem that way, they differ because influencer marketing wouldn’t exist without social media. In simple terms, influencer marketing is when a brand or company partners with someone with a following whose opinion in trusted. An influencer can be anyone, but their following is what makes them so influential. That “influencer” then rates, reviews or promotes the product. This comes in the form of a social media post, a video blog or even a discount in honor of the influencer. It is has been called a “modern day content-driven marketing campaign”. The main difference between social media marketing and influencer marketing is that the latter is the result of a collaboration between said influencer and a brand. Additionally, the influencer is a brand in and of itself. They have created their own following by expressing their likes and dislikes, opinions and personality. They are not just someone who can push a brand; they are the brand.
Why brands should care:
One of the biggest appeals to influencer marketing is the reach the influencer is able to provide. One influencer can expose your product or brand to millions of people that otherwise wouldn’t have seen it, For example, beauty influencer Kathleenlights has over 4 million Youtube subscribers and 2 million Instagram followers. She gained her following by reviewing different makeup products and brands and giving her honest opinions on them, as well as modeling looks using the PR packages she receives. It is clear from her success that she did a great job of telling us who she is and what her preferences are. One bad review from her can send negatively influence buying decisions. The word-of-mouth that results from this kind of influence is what brands should be focused on. To our point, brands are not only reaching a bigger audience, but an audience that is in the market looking for their product. They are ready and willing to buy because they are actively searching for new products in that market that the influencer recommends.
71% Of Marketers Say The Quality Of Customers & Traffic From Influencer Marketing Is Better Than Other Marketing Sources
Selecting someone to represent your brand is a heavy decision. Therefore, it is important to take the time to select the right identity. While there is now a plethora of influencers readily available, not all of them will fit your look. It is important to remember that influencer marketing is not like a celebrity endorsement. These influencers have created their own identities and their following came to them because of it. It isn’t about finding someone to say good things about your brand, but someone who found your brand to fit in with their lifestyle that can share it with their audience. Influencer Marketing is not a “one size fits all” approach. It takes time to find the right people to fit your brand identity naturally and effortlessly. Essentially, brands should take the time to market to influencers who have made their own identities clear. Therefore, making it easy to see if their likes and dislikes fit seamlessly with the brand.
There are no tricks when it comes to this kind of channel, and that is because it is so transparent with what it is. Having a well-trusted influencer that meshes well with your brand express their interest and opinions can either really benefit or hurt a brand. An influencer can increase engagement, strengthen a brand message through an authentic endorsement, and reach an audience that is in the market for that product. There is already an established trust between the influencer and their followers, so buying decisions are vulnerable to influence.
On average, businesses generate $6.50 in revenue for each $1 invested in influencer marketing .
Taco Bell is arguably one of the most famously recognized brands not only in the United States, but on the international playing field as well. The company has worked establish itself as more than just a place for quick meals, but also for snacking and late-night stops, targeting a younger consumer base.
Taco Bell has made a deliberate effort to utilize their social media marketing channels in order to successfully appeal to this younger demographic. They have been extremely successful with this in recent years, and these are a few reasons why this has been the case.
The brand is not afraid to be playful across social media platforms They joke with their consumers, or respond to existing posts with clever remarks, which prompts consumer engagement across these channels. Often times their posts go viral as well, which is an added benefit to them, as the public is sharing their content for them, thus increasing their reach without any additional work on their part. Younger generations appreciate this sense of humor, and it shows. 2. Utilizing Social Media Influencers/Celebrity Endorsements
The brand has further widened its social media presence by appealing to various influencers and celebrities. For instance, after Chrissy Teigen got married, the company sent her not only a ring but also a handwritten letter, which she then shared on her personal Instagram account. This allows Taco Bell to reach consumers that are not directly tied to Taco Bell on social media in any way, which is a strong move on their part.
3. Mobile App
Taco Bell introduced its new mobile app in a rather unique way: the company essentially put all of its social media activity on hold, except for a single promotion of the app, across all of their platforms. This ensured that the new app would be the focus of their marketing, and consumers would not miss it. This tactic clearly worked for them, with this becoming one of the most downloaded apps within Apple’s category of “Food and Drink” only a day after it launched.
These are some of the ways in which Taco Bell has increased its social media presence in recent years.
The brand’s presence does not stop outside United States borders, either. Just recently in 2017, the company decided to increase its focus on international expansion in four key markets, as a part of their goal to increase annual sales by $5 billion by 2022. This entailed opening up at least 100 restaurants in each of their targeted markets: Brazil, Canada, India, and China. These markets were chosen primarily because of their high populations, as well as a prominence of youth culture.
On top of their increased focus on social media, they are attempting to create an community feeling in these international markets by appealing to the local cultures in which they reside, and by utilizing culturally appropriate artwork. They also want to design stores with open kitchens and more digital menu boards.
“Innovation on our menu and building design, along with social experiences, is going to fuel our growth.”
– Liz Williams, Chief Financial Officer of Taco Bell
They also want their menus to remain dynamic and innovative. Their introduction of the famous Doritos Locos Taco has been an example of that in the company’s recent history. They have also started offering healthier offerings, higher quality ingredients, and even breakfast options.
These are the main ways in which Taco Bell intends to grow, both domestically and internationally.