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02/22/2012

International Marketing Approach: Procter & Gamble


International Marketing

 

Introduction

            With the rise of globalization, contemporary organizations have begun opening its doors towards international markets. The globalization factor then permitted the enterprise and organization to restructure its primary goals. The introduction of various communication technologies further supported this organization transition. While going global leads to promising outcomes, organization operators knew that the risks are even higher. Moreover, several factors would have to be considered in order to penetrate international markets successfully.

            International marketing is among the many essential elements of global organization. This generally enables organization organizations to reach out to other clients outside the national borders. However, with a different cultural background, preferences and interests of clients, distributing products and services to a foreign land can be challenging. This implies that new organizational approaches would have to be developed and applied – one that will meet local interest.

The statement “I want to be a good Frenchman in France and a good Italian in Italy” of Eric Johansson, President of Electrolux is very much related to this. This statement suggests that entrepreneurs should integrate the value of becoming “one of the locals” in order to achieve international market growth. In this essay, the concepts of international marketing in relation to balancing global visions and local demands will be discussed. Approaches used by other successful international corporations will be used so as to stress the value of cultural adaptation and local and subcultural responsiveness to international marketing.  Primarily, the goal of this paper is to analyze the international marketing approach of a industry’ and provide recommendation to help the industry’ sustain competitive advantage.

International Marketing Approach: Procter & Gamble

            The industry’ that will be given emphasis in this report is Procter & Gamble. The industry’ has been considered as one of the global personal hygiene and household industries providing these products. The industry’ has been known because of its efficient international marketing approach

In an article by Michaels (2004), the success of Procter & Gamble company was emphasized by relating it to the industry's high level of local and subcultural responsiveness. By its efficient approach of adapting with the needs of the local market as well as its international marketing approach, Procter & Gamble has been able to continue to prosper in the international market. One of the significant international marketing approaches of the industry’ is its abiliy to provide the needs of their specific market. . With this, the industry’ gives the locals the opportunity to handle its main operations. This practice is based on the belief that the local human resource knows what clients need and seek. The local human resource understands the clients’ various issues more than anyone else. This then resulted to the creation of relationship-based Procter & Gamble products. Aside from the local human resource, the industry’ also has international marketing approach. These are focused on the experimentation of different new products that suits local needs.  

According to one associate professor in international marketing, Sundaresan Ram (Michaels, 2004), the presence of Procter & Gamble’s international marketing approach is indeed one of the significant keys in international marketing. International marketing approach teams are helpful in gathering county-specific consumer data. This is helpful in creating a product that will definitely attract the locals. Furthermore, this will prevent the industry’ from significant losses. More significantly, Ram stated that by means of these cross geographical international marketing approach, market shifts that typically occur in international settings can easily be anticipated. This will then help the industry’ to transform its approaches based on these sudden market changes.

In addition, it has also been stated further that an international marketing approach team must be equipped with the right skills so as to increase a industry's local and subcultural responsiveness. People in the international marketing approach team must have a background on a particular local culture and must have the strong instincts about market shifts. The members of the international marketing approach team must also have the open-minded view that consumer taste for products or services tend to vary in every nation and that no consumer segment is exactly the same. This then suggest that the offerings of the industry’ must be developed, packaged, distributed and advertised differently from one country to another (Michaels, 2004).

Effective adaptation approaches have been applied by Procter & Gamble as well. Procter & Gamble has been recognized as a highly flexible corporation. This industry feature has been evidenced by its vast product differentiation. This is one of the industry’s major approaches in entering international markets.  products and personal hygiene and household in countries like Philippines is one f the concrete examples of Procter & Gamble ability to modify its products based on local tastes and preferences. When Procter & Gamble decided to operate in the country, major product changes were done. In this country, majority of the population have become more conscious about their personal hygiene and the way they keep themselves clean and healthy. In this regard, Procter & Gamble adheres to the need of the market as part of their international marketing approach. In addition, since Procter & Gamble have strong competitors like Unilever and other companies that over personal hygiene and household, they tend to change their marketing approach in the international level.

Recommendation

International marketing has been and significant concept for companies who aim to expand through international means. The introduction of different global communication technologies and also the rise of globalization further supported this possibility. However, while this may be an effective alternative for company growth, several factors would have to be considered. In particular, international companies should realize the significance of obtaining local knowledge. Different cultural aspects like religion, education as well as values should be considered by international companies like Procter & Gamble so as to implement marketing approaches that meet local needs and interest. By means of strategic management, international companies can modify their global product formulations, means of promotion and pricing approaches based on specific cultures. The concepts of internationalization, local responsiveness and adaptation have been stressed in this discussion. These concepts emphasize that conventional company and marketing practices, though successful in domestic markets, may not be effective among foreign clients. Several major companies like Procter & Gamble have learned and applied these significant international marketing concepts. By transforming their conventional marketing approaches, Procter & Gamble were able to operate in various countries and established a strong following among foreign consumers.

            From this essay, the significance of change has been emphasized. The cultural background of international consumers tends to vary from one country to another; hence, companies should be open to changes so as to succeed internationally. In general, international marketing is not only a concept that promotes the significance of learning local practices for better company outcomes. It also gives more value to individual differences and customer satisfaction, which are significant principles of international marketing.

Reference

Arnold, D. (2003, October 17). Strategies for Entering and Developing International Markets. In Mirage of Global Markets, The: How Globalizing Companies Can Succeed as Markets Localize. Financial Time Prentice Hall.

Cater, P. R. & Graham, J. (2002). International Marketing. 11th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Michaels, L. (2004). How Multinationals Sustain Competitive Advantage. Thunderbird. Retrieved October 20, 2009, from http://www.thunderbird.edu/about_us/publications/tbird_mag/vol55_no_1/

 

 

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