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BizReport : Trends & Ideas archives : November 17, 2014

'World-wide vanilla' approach to marketing eroding Asian cultural standards

New research among Asian consumers illustrates the need for brands to be both global and local in order to illustrate their understanding of cultures and appeal to those against globalization.

by Helen Leggatt

Asian consumers' desire to retain their sense of identity and relevance amid growing globalization is clear from the findings of a survey by the Y&R Agency of 32,000 people across 10 Asian markets.

Three-quarters (73%) of 36-60 year-olds and 70% of 18-35 year-olds expressed concern about how long-held cultural standards were being eroded by globalization.

In what Y&R refers to as a "world-wide vanilla" approach to marketing, brands are missing out on a prime opportunity to connect with consumers who crave culturally relevant values to be addressed.

The pan-regional study, conducted by VML Qais, offers key insights to brands looking to connect and communicate with Asian consumers. According to Y&R Asia Chief Strategy Officer Hari Ramanathan, the Generation Asia 2014 report suggests the need for "a new approach to marketing communications that we at Y&R describe as 'Culturalization'. This need to connect with people's cultural identity is what brands really need to focus on instead of the supposed choice, and endless tired debates, of Globalization versus Localization".

Y&R's report suggests 5 ways in which brands can adopt culturalization:

1. Learn from the cultures.

2. Contextualize your ideas.

3. Live in the community.

4. Integrate no template.

5. Go to the jungle.

Tags: Asia, brand marketing, culture, research

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