Ask them to elaborate, and you’ll get the low down on how consumer habits in their market are different, their consumers’ purchase behaviour is different, preferences and tastes are different, how the media and the retail trade are different, and how their consumers and customers require unique, tailored, and delicate handling.
- How large are these local differences, and do they “matter”?
- In other words, should they affect how the brand is positioned and presented?
- Are the differences sufficiently important to undermine the central premise of the brand?
As these markets grow in size and importance, so will the influence that local brand managers in those markets have on the direction of the global brand and product portfolio.
If the multinationals are savvy, they will take new product ideas and even brand propositions from China and India, and bring them to the rest of the world through their global networks.McCain Foods, the world’s largest frozen French fry maker, finds that there’s a large market for aloo tikki (Indian potato patties) in India. But since no one in India sells them frozen, McCain seizes the opportunity. As the global specialist in frozen potatoes, the company develops and launches the popular snack in India. Its a success, and it even wins the SIAL d’OR (at one of the world’s largest food trade shows, the Salon international de L’alimentation) prize in Paris. And eventually, the company may even find that there is a global market for a well-positioned aloo tikki.
In that not too distant scenario, the local brand manager in India may be placed in the unfamiliar position of arguing that consumer preferences worldwide are in fact similar: “everyone’ll love an aloo tikki!”.>> This post appeared originally in Just Marketing; the author retains all rights.
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