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Companies that are growing are always on the lookout for new opportunities. Some of these opportunities present themselves in new countries, while others exist here at home. In either case, focusing on specific cultural groups can open up new markets for your company. Product diversification and growth may demand a product to be introduced on a global level.

There a numerous culture-related factors that can affect a business and its marketing strategy. Some of the major factors include:

  • Language – This is particularly impactful on promotion (advertising and labeling) and sales. Language affects how people communicate (deliver and interpret messages). 
  • Individual Values – Culture has a major impact on the values that people hold. This can affect product design, placement, advertising efforts, etc. 
  • Customs – Unique cultures have unique customs or ways of going about doing things. A marketing strategy must take these customs into consideration when determining what products to introduce, how to introduce them, and how to promote them. 
  • Diversion (Food, Arts, Entertainment) – The methods by which individuals divert or entertain themselves is a strong element of culture. In fact, marketing strategies often seen to promote products based upon these needs or wants. These distinctions affect the development of a marketing strategy. 

How Does Cultural Diversity Tie Into Advertising?
How does Culture Affect Advertising?
How do Cultural Differences Affect Marketing Strategies?
How Different Cultures Affect Marketing Strategies?
What are the Factors Affecting Advertising?
Why are Cultural Differences Important in Marketing?
How do Cultural Differences Affect Businesses?
What are Cultural Differences in Marketing?
How does Culture Affect Media?
How Important is Cultural Awareness in Advertising?
How does Culture Affect Customers?

How Does Cultural Diversity Tie Into Advertising?

Online Advertising

You may face resistance from consumers when using online advertising. However, various cultures respond to online advertising differently. For example, according to ComScore, a global company that measures the effects of digital advertising, Hispanics in the United States claim to enjoy online advertising more than any other ethnic group. Thus, you should get to know the habits of your target customers before you make assumptions about them.

Read Also: Telemarketing Success Rate

If you have a product that is a high-interest item for people of a particular culture, such as Japanese kimonos, Colombian food, or African art, you may be able to overcome advertising resistance online with a direct appeal to the tastes of your target audience.

Individual vs. Collective Stances

The United States values individualism, and this shows up in American advertising. Other cultures may value a more collective stance. If you approach a community-oriented culture with individualistic messages, you may alienate your target customer. For example, a dissertation by Niaz Ahmed for the graduate school at the University of Southern Mississippi suggests that, in India, visuals that reflect a collective stance succeed better.

By “collective stance,” he means advertisements that appeal to group inclusiveness by showing several people of a shared ethnicity enjoying and embracing the product, rather than an individual choosing the product as a way to stand out from the crowd.


According to Dr. Lars Perner of the Department of Marketing at the University of Southern California, one danger of ethnically targeted marketing is stereotyping. For example, to assume that all Asians are interested in cameras is not only erroneous, but it can also alienate potential Asian customers who might see it as based on a United States stereotype of Asian tourists.

Members of a group seldom see themselves as being as similar as outsiders may see them. This is a dangerous tendency that can cause you to offend a culture. Always test your ideas with a trusted member of the culture you are targeting.

Gender Issues

The roles of men and women in different cultures vary so widely that you cannot count on universal values in this area. For example, according to Dr. Geert Hofstede of Maastricht University in The Netherlands, showing a “strong woman” in advertising might come off as inappropriate for countries that consider themselves to be more masculine.

By “masculine,” Dr. Hofstede means assertive and competitive cultures that expect women to be modest and nurturing. These kinds of differences can positively or negatively affect how your products are perceived if you tailor your advertising to men or women of a specific culture.


Each culture deals with uncertainty in different ways. For example, according to Dr. Geert Hofstede, Japanese people tend to value order and certainty, so advertisements that come to clear conclusions tend to appeal to them. He says that cultures that accept risk, such as Hong Kong, will accept much more uncertainty in advertising.

How does Culture Affect Advertising?

The essence of successful advertising is convincing people that a product is meant for them. By purchasing it, they will receive some benefit, whether lifestyle, status, convenience or finances.

However, when an advertising campaign is taken abroad, the target audience typically have different values and perceptions as to what enhances status or what constitutes convenience. As such, these differences make the original advertising campaign defunct.

It is therefore critical to any cross-cultural, global or international advertising campaign that a thorough understanding of the target culture is acquired.

Let’s examine a few examples of cultural differences in advertising to see why.

Language in Advertising

It may seem somewhat obvious to state that language is key to effective cross-cultural advertising. However, the fact that companies persistently fail to check the linguistic implications of company or product names and slogans demonstrates that such issues are not being properly addressed.

The advertising world is littered with examples of linguistic advertising blunders.

Of the more comical was Ford’s introduction of the ‘Pinto’ in Brazil. After seeing sales fail, they soon realized that this was due to the fact that Brazilians did not want to be seen driving a car meaning ‘tiny male genitals. 

Language must also be analyzed for its cultural suitability.

For example, the slogan employed by the computer games manufacturer, EA Sports, “Challenge Everything” raises grumbles of disapproval in religious or hierarchical societies where harmonious relationships are maintained through the values of respect and non-confrontation. The idea of challenging everything goes against the grain of respecting others and protecting relationships. As such, it’s frowned upon.

It is imperative therefore that language be examined carefully in any international or cross-cultural advertising campaign.

When advertising abroad, the cultural values underpinning society must be analyzed carefully.

Questions that should be asked about the target country or culture include:

  • Is there a religion that is practiced by the majority of the people?
  • Is the society collectivist or individualist?
  • Is it family orientated?
  • Is it hierarchical?
  • Is there a dominant political or economic ideology?
  • Is it a multicultural or monocultural country?

All of these will impact an advertising campaign if left unexamined.

For example, advertising that focuses on individual success, and independence and stresses the word “I” would be received negatively in countries where teamwork is considered a positive quality.

Rebelliousness or lack of respect for authority should always be avoided in family-orientated or hierarchical societies.

How do Cultural Differences Affect Marketing Strategies?

Culture has a huge impact on the marketing strategies of a product. As culture affects a consumer’s lifestyle, so brands do focus on the cultural values of their consumer in order to make them believe that they really know their consumer well.

The importance of culture in the world of marketing is huge. The world market is made up of smaller markets. These smaller markets have their own culture and languages. For instance, the culture of America is very different from that of India. So a brand that markets itself in both nations needs to differ its marketing strategies according to the culture of the countries.

A few things that are acceptable in America won’t be acceptable in India. The kind of fashion or food preferred by American consumers might not be appreciated by Indians. These things do affect the performance of a business performing globally. For example, when McDonald’s introduced itself in India, it came up with the idea of Mc Aloo Tikki, as there was a huge base of Indian customers who are vegetarians.

Similarly, when IKEA wanted to enter the US market, they made a few changes in their business cycle, philosophy, products and prices in order to gain acceptance. But why did such big brands need to do this?  It was to add cultural appeal to its brand to connect with the audience on an emotional note. Unless your brand appeals to the culture, talk to it, the culture and the market would not respond.

Cultural differences exist on the customer side too. Consumer needs differ from culture to culture.

Cultural and lifestyle information about a country can be categorized and broken down into the following factors:

  • Material Culture: This category includes the technological goods used by the majority of the population, personal transport and the availability of resources such as electricity, natural gas, telephone, Internet and wireless communication.
  • Languages: The languages spoken in a country have a direct impact on marketing, brand names, the collection of information through surveys and interviews, advertising and the conduct of business relationships
  • Education: The rate of literacy in a region indicates the quality skilled workforce.
  • Religion: Religion is a major cultural influencer that affects many aspects of life, including the role of women in society, rules about food and beverage consumption, clothing habits and holiday activities.
  • Ethics and Values: The ethics and values that the citizens of a nation possess impact the way marketers advertise their products.

How Different Cultures Affect Marketing Strategies?

Should a company choose to internationalize, it must be able to deal with the cultural identity of the countries with which it wants to establish commercial relations.

The concept of “culture” brings to mind aspects like the language, the different customs and traditions, religion, the political and legal system, and the business culture of a community. It is therefore evident that cultural identity is not a characteristic related to the individual, but a set of values, ideas and symbols shared by members of the same society. Thus, local culture becomes an important element of natural differentiation within international markets.

As cultural differences emerge strongly in business environments, understanding how to adapt the marketing mix to different markets is a necessary as well as complex task for an exporting company.

Each of the four pillars of the marketing mix (product, price, place and promotion) undergoes a radical change in the cultural adaptation phase. There are several reasons why this happens, as explained below.


Product decisions are quite diverse and range from packaging to branding issues and product specifications. According to the international marketing researcher Bernard Dubois, companies need to consider the impact of culture, especially in the area of positioning, presentation, and packaging of their products.

Regarding the specific elements of culture that influence these strategies, Dubois identifies the symbolic representation of objects as a pivotal factor. He describes symbolic representation as “the expression of customs and traditions prevalent in a given cultural environment”.

Cultural differences can therefore lead to different symbolic interpretations of a product, especially with regard to physical appearance and packaging. If a symbolic attribute of the product is perceived in a somewhat distorted way by consumers in a foreign market, the company will need to recalibrate its offering, eventually striving to properly adapt to the context in which it operates.


In setting a pricing policy, the cultural factors influencing a firm’s decision are the legal order and the rules governing the relationship between consumers and the sales intermediaries. The legal system is responsible for adopting a state-controlled pricing system or, alternatively, a pricing system based exclusively on market competition.

As far as regulations are concerned, they affect consumer behavior in approaching the price/quality relationship, as well as influencing the propensity of trade intermediaries to declare “price wars” on their competitors.


Decisions about the most appropriate distribution channel must take into account several factors such as consumer needs, the type of channels available, the possible presence of intermediaries, and the management of relationships within the channel. All of them are influenced by the factors shaping the cultural dimension of each market.

While a country’s customs and traditions play an important role in the structure of the distribution channel and the management of relations within it, the political order will have a greater effect on the length of the channel and the choice of whether to invite or exclude sales intermediaries throughout the sales process.


Though the impact of culture on communication decisions turns out to be more clearly identifiable than on any other variable of the marketing mix, the extent to which the two are linked needs to be properly clarified. Cultural identity undoubtedly influences advertising strategies, along with content choice. The budget and structure of advertising will thus depend on the habits and consumption style of buyers, as well as on the concrete availability of media and interactive platforms in a given market.

What are the Factors Affecting Advertising?

Marketing is an important part of almost every business. To pique your customers’ interests, your products or services, as well as the quality of service your provide them, must meet your customers’ needs and expectations.

The process of marketing aims to identify, select, and develop a product; determine its value; select the right distribution channel to reach the customer; and develop and execute a promotional strategy. When it comes to posting an advertisement in newspapers or magazines, here are some of the factors that could affect your strategy.

Campaign Objective

Every ad campaign has a primary goal or objective, and every decision you make should revolve around it. While some believe that the objective of every marketing campaign is to increase sales of a product or service—and it partially is—the objective is much more than that.

Each element of your strategy must have its own specific goals, which should guide your processes and methods in that area and work as a standard to measure your performance. An ad campaign should be evaluated based on the goals you’ve assigned to it, and not in terms of increasing sales alone.

Projected Annual Sales

When you prepare an advertising budget for your business you should consider the annual gross sales. This helps you know your actual allowance for advertising, so you don’t spend too little or too much. You can calculate your projected annual sales by multiplying the number of units sold last year by the price. This figure will vary year to year based on your performance and product markups, but it should give you an idea of how much you can expect to sell in the current fiscal year.


It’s true that competition can be a great motivator to perform your best, but it can also have a negative impact on your advertising if it is too high for you. Even if your ads are professional and have an effective message, they won’t have the desired effect if your competitor’s ads are running in the same space on the same day. Consider placement and timing when posting your advertisements in magazines and newspapers.


Reputation management is not an easy task, and if your business has had some bad reviews, it may take more than a quick improvement to boost your reputation. The fact is that until you repair your reputation, your ads won’t be as effective as you’d like.

Having a credible reputation is key to ensuring your ad campaign is successful. Find ways to address customer complaints quickly and effectively and do your best to ensure you understand their expectations and, if possible, exceed them.

Long and Short-Term Goals

The goals you set for your ad campaign will affect the size of your budget. One of your goals might be to improve your brand image and it may take a long-term approach in adjusting your advertising. A short-term goal may be an immediate sales task, which would be treated differently.

Frequency of Purchase

It is widely believed that if a product has a high frequency of purchase, you need to spend more on your ad campaign. Although this is true in most cases, there are exceptions when the advertising goal of certain (infrequently bought) brands requires more spending due to something other than frequency of purchase.

New Product Introductions

Most people understand that launching and introducing a new product takes a lot of additional money to break into the market. The factors that affect this cost include the market size, competition degree, and desirable quality of the new brand image. Keep in mind that a new brand costs at least 150% as much as an established brand.

Geographic Differences

Spreading your ads out too wide will not be a wise use of your investment. Your customer base may change dramatically based on location, which is why you should take this into consideration before posting your ad. If you are selling toys for kids, it may not make sense to advertise in an area where there are mostly seniors.

You may have better success appealing to communities with new families and newly married couples. There is not a “one size fits all” approach to geographic targeting, so consider the population density around your location.


Every calendar year is an opportunity to make the most of holidays and special events. Understanding how these seasons affect your advertising will help you gain a better return on investment (ROI). Christmas holidays are the best time of year to make the most of retail sales, and can be used as an opportunity to promote items that have been sitting in your warehouse. You should consider the season and tweak your ads to suit it.

Acts of God

It may seem strange but extreme weather and natural disasters can impact your ads that run on the same day. Floods, earthquakes, thunderstorms, tornado warnings, and anything that disrupts the daily flow of things can hurt your advertising results. Be sure to take these into consideration when creating your campaign.

Why are Cultural Differences Important in Marketing?

If your company is aiming to expand its presence globally, content must be carefully crafted to have maximum impact on the culture you are targeting. Marketers must consider the buyer persona as it relates to demographics, interests, education, career, and identity. A global content marketing strategy also requires awareness of different languages and cultural norms to connect with diverse audiences.  

Cultural differences matter because they inform people’s perceptions at every level. Images, hand gestures, colors, tone, and symbols can all have very different meanings in different cultures. Phrases and slogans that are translated verbatim into different languages can lose their original meaning, and regional differences in dialect, tone, and professional communication culture can add additional layers of complexity. 

There have been many cross-cultural models developed by anthropologists that can help inform marketers when it comes to nurturing sincere connections between brands and consumers. One of the most common models used was developed by Richard D. Lewis, a communications specialist and social theorist. His theory claimed that cultures can be best classified by three behavioral categories: multi-active, reactive and linear-active. 

Multi-active cultures placed heavy emphasis on emotions and relationships. Reactive cultures tended to be more passive and accommodating to authority. Linear-active cultures were less emotional and more focused on organization and factual data. According to this model, many Latin American cultures score high on the multi-active scale, whereas Asian cultures tend towards the reactive side and Western societies are generally more linear-active.  

While these models can be helpful guides, it’s dangerous to oversimplify cultures too much. There are many nuances in translations, context, and perceptions of color and imagery that will come into play when creating localized content. Just as many companies have chief compliance officers to ensure their companies are staying compliant with local laws and regulations, international brands should have local consultants for marketing as well. 

These consultants should provide input regarding content creation and marketing strategies for the local context. By creating culturally appropriate content, your company can help nurture customers online and turn them into your local brand evangelists in other markets. Without them, you might commit some harmful faux pas. 

When deciding to expand to an international audience, companies must do more than research the local market. While your product or service might have a great chance of success in many countries, the type of content you create for your website or blog could make or break your chance. Not only should your content reflect your buyer’s persona and traits, but it should also reflect a cultural awareness that fosters an authentic connection between the consumer and your brand.

How do Cultural Differences Affect Businesses?

Accepting cultural differences provides you with a wide range of business expertise and gives you novel business insights to overcome business-related problems. It’s your way to cope with potential barriers regarding international business and culture.

A global company needs to understand that there is a difference in the definition of culture per se and culture in relation to international business. Culture is typically defined as a group of ordinary and accepted standards shared by a specific society. When you put it in a global business context, what one society considers professional may be different for another foreign society.

You must understand that cultural differences affect global business in three primary areas – organizational hierarchy, etiquette, and communication. Understanding them and recognizing their effects on your business will prevent you from creating misunderstandings with foreign clients and colleagues.


Effective communication is vital to business success, whether you are a start-up or a big corporation. Although it is common to hear that English is the language of business, it’s never wise to assume that your global business partners will all understand English.

When you venture into the international business arena, one way of bridging cultural differences is through language. Understand the language your target market speaks and know how you use it to convey your message. In India, for example, business professionals typically communicate in nuanced and indirect ways. This is opposite to the Finns, who tend to be direct and brief in their communication.

Aside from verbal communication, it is essential to learn that non-verbal communication is also critical when dealing with international businesses.


Gestures that are commonplace in your own country, like kissing people you meet on the cheek, making eye contact, and shaking hands firmly, may be taken as offensive or unusual by your foreign clients or business partners.

As many business coaches will tell you, you must remember the proper professional interactions when dealing with different cultures. Researching accepted and proper business etiquette is essential. In some cases, you need to be extra observant of body language, and at times, it is better to ask than commit a cultural faux pas.

Workplace Etiquette

When you are working for a multinational company, you are likely to encounter many differences, which prompt you to learn international business etiquette.

Pay special attention to the formality of address when dealing with foreign business partners and colleagues. In some cultures, it is acceptable to address a person you’ve recently met by their first name, while in other countries, they would instead that you address them by their surname or their title.

Canadians and Americans often use first names, even when dealing with new acquaintances. But in many Asian countries, such as Singapore, China, and South Korea, you should always address a person formally by adding Mr. or Ms. before their surname. If you are in doubt, use the formal way of address.

Punctuality is relative. When you deal with business partners, clients, or colleagues from the United States, South Korea, Japan, and Russia, you are expected to be on time. In Germany, you are even expected to be at least 10 minutes early for your appointment.

In Greece, they expect foreigners to arrive on time, but just like in Russia, you may expect your counterpart to arrive slightly late. Brazil is ambivalent. They could either be late by a few or several minutes unless you indicate that they should follow the English time, meaning they should arrive at the agreed time.

In Malaysia, expect to wait up to an hour if your counterpart stated that they would be about five minutes late. They are not required to explain either. In China, it is acceptable to be at least 10 minutes late, while in Mexico, it is pretty normal for people to be late by 30 minutes for a business meeting.

When doing business in Nigeria or Ghana, the appointed hour for the meeting may be one hour late or within the day. In Morocco, personal meetings could be delayed by an hour and, in some cases, a day. When scheduling meetings in India, understand that being punctual is not one of their ways.

Organizational Hierarchy

Cultural norms dictate how attitudes toward management and organizational hierarchy are perceived. In some cultures, junior staff and middle management may or may not be allowed to speak up during meetings. In some countries, it is challenging to question decisions by senior officers or express opinions that are different from the rest.

Attitudes are dependent on social equality or the societal values of a country. In some countries such as Japan and South Korea, where respect for elders and people in positions of authority is deeply ingrained in the members of society, the concept is applied to the workplace as well. It helps define responsibilities and roles in the company, and those holding positions in senior management expect deference from junior staff and a higher level of formality and respect.

However, the situation is different in Scandinavian countries. In Norway, for example, societal equality is emphasized, so the organizational hierarchy tends to be flat. The workplace environment calls for cooperation across all departments, and informal communication is prevalent.

Differences in Negotiation Styles

Negotiation is a principal component of international business. Culture influences the way people behave, communicate, and think. These characteristics are reflected in the way they negotiate. Companies must understand cultural differences during business transactions and find ways to hurdle the barriers these differences present.

Spanish speakers view negotiation as the means to have a contract, while in some Asian countries, negotiations help build firmer business relationships. The Japanese regard negotiation as a win-win process while the Spanish look at it as a win-lose process.

The way one communicates during negotiations should be carefully considered. Israelis and Americas are very direct, so you immediately know if the transaction is approved or not. The Japanese, however, tend to be indirect. You have to read and carefully interpret vague signs to see if they rejected or accepted your proposal.

Even the way different cultures handle contracts varies. Americans like to have every detail included in the contract because they want to anticipate possible eventualities and circumstances. The deal equates to an agreement.

Therefore everything that was discussed and accepted during the negotiation should be specified in the contract. The Chinese, on the other hand, prefer a contract to have the general principles only because, for them, sealing a deal means forming a relationship with the business partner.

What are Cultural Differences in Marketing?

Cultural differences in marketing should receive primary attention when selling goods or services internationally, as the cultural environment changes one country to the other. This means that multinational companies must understand the culture of a specific state before selling the products.

Here are some significant cultural factors that businesses intending to move to the international stage should consider.

1. Language

Languages are some of the major cultural differences in marketing that companies ought to understand before they market their products and services in a foreign country. Previously, grave mistakes have occurred during translation, which has led to devastating effects.

One of the most memorable embarrassing mistakes in international marketing happened when General Motors was marketing its cars by the brand name ‘Nova,’ which in South American local languages, translated to, ‘it won’t go.’ These mistakes obviously don’t help the company to sell its products. Therefore, companies need to pay attention to language and translations to avoid business failure.

2. Purchasing Power/Pricing

In as much as pricing strategies appear to be economic factors, they are important cultural differences in marketing. It is common knowledge that some cultures have a higher purchasing power than others. For example, people in the United States have a higher purchasing power than those in Africa. This plays a significant role in how you should price your products and services.

In addition, it should be taken into consideration that some people have high purchasing power, but tend to hold money rather than spend. Therefore, you have to come up with a strategic marketing plan that will make people exercise their high purchasing capability.

3. Consumption Habits

As a marketer, you are already aware that personalities and cultures combine to shape the consumption behavior of individuals in a particular country or region. Before marketing your products, you need to determine whether individuals in a specific country make individualistic or collective buying decisions.

This will help you to formulate a marketing approach that appeals to personality or a strategy that pulls the entire society. You’re also required to understand the psychological and societal factors influencing buying decisions.

4. Age/Demographics

Just like in domestic marketing, age and other demographics significantly contribute to cultural differences in marketing. For example, in developing countries, literacy levels among senior citizens, especially those above 60 years is very low. Therefore, you may decide to target your marketing message not directly at this demographic group, especially when selling digital devices.

Moreover, you’ve to understand the dominant demographic groups in a country before you can modify your marketing messages. This will help your country to appeal and communicate to the majority rather than the minority.

5. Taste and Preferences

Eating habits are further important cultural differences in marketing that multinational companies need to understand. For a food selling company, it is essential to understand the eating habits of a particular region before marketing its menu.

For instance, McDonald’s and other fast-food companies had to start offering vegetable products in India rather than meat products. Likewise, these companies have started to increasingly cater to international tastes, like rice dishes for the Asian market.

6. Religion

Religious beliefs are important cultural differences in marketing that should be considered when selling in foreign markets. They influence how a particular society perceives various products and services. Organizations have to understand the impact of religion and its role in society.

For example, in Muslim countries, marketing secular women’s outfits might be off as the religion in these countries requires women to dress in a modest way, which is highly regulated. Besides, some marketing messages have been at loggerheads with religious groupings after their messages were deemed to be offensive towards a particular religion. Religion is a very critical aspect that companies need to understand before they can start marketing their products at the international stage.

How does Culture Affect Media?

The media has a profound effect on our cognition, beliefs, attitude, affect, physiology, and lastly, our behavior.

Just look at social media and all the popular, yet fleeting trends popping up. What’s deemed cool behavior today might be deemed cringe and old a month, or even a few weeks later. This means that the potential positive and negative impact of mass media is enormous and should not be underestimated.

Media has the influence to affect 6 things in their audience. Namely:

  1. Cognition
  2. Beliefs
  3. Attitude
  4. Affect
  5. Physiology
  6. Behavior

Cognitive media effect

The cognitive media effect happens when media exposure impacts an individual’s mental processes.

One of the easiest to notice cognitive effects that happens when the audience gets information from the media is the acquiring of facts and empirical data from media messages.

Media’s effect on beliefs

Beliefs are depicted as cognitions about the chance that an event or object is related with a given concept/construct. Others have described it as a belief that something is true or not.

The media constantly shapes and alters our beliefs by showing parts of the world that we aren’t always able to see for ourselves because we are living at one particular spot in the world.

Media’s effect on attitude

Attitudes are judgments that we make about something or someone. For example, we make judgments, and ratings about someone’s physical attractiveness, likability, and how likely it is to see ourselves in a long-lasting relationship with that individual.

The information that the media shows us triggers and incentivizes us to make judgments about that information. Information such as political issues, candidates, life events and controversial issues.

Media’s effect on affect

Affect alludes to the feelings that individuals experience. It includes our mood and emotions.

The media can trigger a lot of emotions through sharing visual and verbal information. For example, showing images or information about innocent people being killed in a war can trigger fear, but also anger, and feelings of compassion.

But, media such as a music channel playing cheerful, happy songs can also help us to manage our moods when we are sad and stressed out. In this case, by listening to cheerful music, can help us to calm down.

Media’s effect on physiology

A physiological effect can be defined as an automatic, involuntary, autonomous somatic response.

For example, when people watch an exciting movie like an action flick, or a horror movie, their heart rates and blood pressure will usually increase as a result of emotions such as excitement, or fear.

This excitement or fear will trigger a fight-or-flight response of the body. The fight or flight response is a remnant from ancient history to protect ourselves against predators such as animals and other hostile tribes or individuals. In other words, to ensure our survival.

How Important is Cultural Awareness in Advertising?

Here are some of the reasons why cultural awareness is important for branding.

1. Changed Perspectives & New Marketing Guidelines

As the world is adopting a more progressive perspective, authorities and policymakers are revisiting the old guidelines. For instance, ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) made new ad regulations that restrict any content that stereotypes women. They intend to modify the image of women and protect our new generation from limiting gender norms.

This calls for brands to revisit their marketing for any intentional and unintentional instances of objectification, sexualization, body shaming, body image, and conformist content. The brands should now re-evaluate their branding and clarify their position by adopting a gender-neutral approach.

2. Communication, Language& Limitations

Whether it’s a Zoom meeting or a live encounter, people of different cultures sit together at the office table. In such instances, the choice of your words and your general cultural sensitivity for people of diverse backgrounds become very important.

Read Also: Interpersonal Communication

When you translate this idea to branding, your brand’s language then becomes a very important factor in determining how inclusive your brand is. For example, brands that use localized terminology in their brand taglines and slogans limit their chances to connect with diverse audience groups.

3. Humanizing, Supporting & Setbacks

As a culturally aware brand, you should be able to understand your audience on a human level. This helps you identify their pain points and allows you to serve them with better products and better services. This also helps you humanize your brand, so people see you not as a website or shop, but as a thriving brand that connects and communicates with its audience.

Moreover, cultural awareness helps the brand stand up for social causes. An extensive study by Magna Global shows that people believe in brands that have a clear social standing. The report also shares that consumers base their purchasing decisions on a brand’s political and social position.

Being culturally aware gives your brand the cultural sensitivity to build meaningful connections with its audience. When done right, cultural awareness gives a brand more chances to address a more diverse and widespread audience and position itself as a strong international or global brand.

How does Culture Affect Customers?

Cultural factors comprise of a set of values and ideologies of a particular community or group of individuals. It is the culture of an individual which decides the way he/she behaves. In simpler words, culture is nothing but the values of an individual. What an individual learns from his parents and relatives as a child becomes his culture.

Example – In India, people still value the joint family system and family ties. Children in India are conditioned to stay with their parents till they get married as compared to foreign countries where children are more independent and leave their parents once they start earning a living for themselves.

Cultural factors have a significant effect on an individual’s buying decision. Every individual has different sets of habits, beliefs and principles which he/she develops from his family status and background. What they see from their childhood becomes their culture.

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