What are consumer Etiquettes? Consumer Behaviour

These are accepted norms of behaviour. Some behaviour may be rude or abusive in one cultureand quite acceptable in other cultures, e.g., sitting with legs crossed or sitting in a manner that shows the sole of a shoe. In Japan it is considered impolite to say no directly to a business offer.They put it differently, by saying it is very difficult, which means no. The exchange of businesscards in Japan is essential, and indicates the level of your status in your business.

Similarly, there are many different habits and ways of doing things socially that effectthe making of advertisement. Eating with the fork in the right hand and the left hand kept under the table is quite common in America. Whereas, in European culture, the fork should bein the left hand and the right hand holding the knife or spoon.

These non-verbal communications in different countries of different languages have adirect bearing on the marketing activity and must be taken care of. As people recognise verballanguages, they act accordingly. In a similar manner, non-verbal communication must also berecognised and understood so that there is less misinterpretation. The advertisement of thecommunication we want to give should be appropriate and match with the culture of the country.

Cross-cultural marketing strategies specially advertising can be standardised to savecost. One campaign can be used in several countries e.g., an Asian model for Asian countries ina low cut short dress. The appeals to youth, beauty and sophistication etc. This standardization has to be appealed against cost and its impact. This is however a controversial issue.

There are seven considerations for approaching a Foregin Market:

  1. Is the geographical area having a homogeneous or a heterogeneous culture? Marketing efforts are usually directed on geographical area mostly an economic and political entities. Sometimes, one area is considered as a single cultured unit but thismay not be true. The culture of Kashmir is different from the culture in South India.Similarly, Canada may have English Canadian and French Canadian who havedifferent buying habits and different attitudes towards products. Therefore, themarketing compaign should be directed on cultural groups rather than countries ingeographical areas.
  2. What NEED the product can fulfil in a culture? For example, the bicycle and motorcycle may satisfy recreational needs in many countries whereas these products fillthe transportation needs in India and other developing countries.
  3. Affordability of the product: Whether the groups or individuals can afford theproduct. It becomes difficult due to economic constraints or recession. Marketeerstherefore resort to credit strategy or exchange of old goods with new products.
  4. VALUES for owning or purchasing the product: The value system must be investigatedfor influencing the purchase of the product.
  5. CONSIDERATION OF DISTRIBUTION, Political and Legal Structures: Some productsare distributed through general stores in one country while the same productsmay be distributed through medicine stores. e.g., Vanilla is considered a chemicaland is distributed through chemical stores in many countries. Similarly, politicaland legal constraints have to be considered for formulating market strategies.
  6. COMMUNICATION about the product: Communication should be based on the
    (i) Media availability
    (ii) Need that the product fulfils
    (iii) Values associated with the product.
    (iv) Verbal and non-verbal commutation systems in culture.

Communicationcan be made effective through promotion mix. Consideration of the culture isimportant and the marketing mix has to be juggled to cater to different culturalneeds while developing and marketing programmes ethical issue should be kept inmind. These issues relate to credibility of the benefits provided by the product. Propercost charged from the customer and giving due importance to legal constraint meetingthe expectation of the customer and fixing due importance to legal constraintsimposed by the government.


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Consumer Behaviour Topics