Reprinted from TrustedPeer
Meet the Expert
TrustedPeer Expert, TrustedPeer, Inc.
- Global Insights (Market Research) Team Leader enabling smarter business decisions for increasing Brand Value and improving Business Results.
- Primary focus is the Global Financial Technology area, with unique broad and deep expertise in Global Brand positioning and tracking, Reputation and Sponsorship research.
- Led and refreshed Global Tracking Studies (Brand Equity Tracker, Ad Tracker, and Sponsorship Tracker) in 30 countries.
- Directed an extensive 10-country, foundational global quantitative positioning study, that provided key input into refreshing Visa’s global brand positioning and tagline.
- Led various complex global research efforts into Brand Architecture / Identity, Naming, Card Design, and other brand related topics.
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Global Brand Research, Positioning and Tracking
TrustedPeer Expert, TrustedPeer, Inc.
- A lack, or shortcoming, of cultural and local knowledge can be a barrier for a global marketing campaign reaching its full potential.
- A key pitfall in multi-national marketing and brand building can be insufficient knowledge of the local cultures, consumer preferences and behaviors, and the competitive environment being approached. This presents challenges as each country needs to have marketing programs relevant to the local marketplace in order to reach its full potential.
We need to understand nuances in the local market. Culture can influence how an industry has grown and create a unique competitive environment (for example, strong local brands). It also can influence how people in a particular country will use a product or whether they even have had much exposure to it.
In other cases, consumer preferences and habits can be influenced by institutional or government approaches and regulations that can vary greatly from country to country.
- A lack of collaboration will not allow finding the right balance between a unified global approach, and local nuances.
- It’s important to know the legal, cultural and social landscapes of the countries in which your are running a marketing program. Brand equity and brand perceptions likely will differ at least somewhat from one country to another country.
It is important to know and understand those differences – but also to see common threads. Is the underlying global positioning working and relevant in key countries?
These commonalities enable efficiencies of scale through one global positioning that can be executed with local nuances. Companies could have a common tagline, but in some countries it may be adjusted based on cultural or translation requirements.
- Gathering reliable and valid market insights from around the world is a complex process, and can present significant challenges.
- Global market research related to brand positioning and tracking is a complex process, and various missteps can occur along the way.
Partnering with a trusted market research company with proven global capabilities is an important requirement for developing a successful research program. Trying to take shortcuts can lead to frustrations and potentially wrong marketing decisions.
- A one-size-fits-all campaign or research program that fails to integrate local information and nuances can limit the overall global potential of your marketing program.
- Some companies have used a "one-size-fits-all" approach in terms of marketing campaigns without much attention or focus on local nuances. The potential advantage is that you could achieve significant economies of scale.
However, local markets are different. Some leading companies tailor, at least to some degree, global campaigns according to the needs of local markets. For instance, consumer perceptions of payment network brands in relation to bank brands can vary from country to country. In other countries there are strong local payment brands that need to be included in research efforts in order to provide a complete picture of consumer perceptions and behavior. Not including these local brands would paint an inaccurate and incomplete picture, and potentially lead to wrong decisions.
- Drawing conclusions from only qualitative research, and skipping quantitative research, is very dangerous and not recommended.
- Sometimes a company or brand may be tempted to take a shortcut and jump immediately from initial qualitative research to firm conclusions about the situation in a market, or on a global scale. Generally, it is necessary to quantify your initial learnings from qualitative research (focus groups, for example) in order to gain statistically reliable results based on a representative sample of the target audience.
Global Brand Research, Positioning and Tracking: Common Problems