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Unilever’s have asked JWT a question that relates specifically to the television commercial break and specifically whether Asian/Chinese cultures respond more measurably to a direct or indirect message.
The mindset of the viewer, the time of day, the progra m just watched, the program anticip ated , relevance, fre quency , mess age decay, overall inte rest, engagement, environment, people present, sound volume, continuity, competitive set activity, context, supporting messages , salience, creativity, creativity, creativity
In the absence of empirical and a priori evidence and given the size of media budgets in this segment, the only recommendation is to trial with a pilot campaign to determine the efficacy of literal over emotionally weighted messages. It’s cost effective and quantifiable strategic planning.
Theorize, hypothesize, synthesize, execute, measure, feedback and improve.
The Millward Brown research has some shortcomings.
They point out the propensity for ‘new-news’ oriented communications to work well within Asian developing economies
This is self evident. In any economy that has yet to catch up with over 60 years of mass-market product-portfolio development, diversification and extension.
Why does ‘new-news’ work so well in developing economies?
When China has 3 types of Rye Bread with two types of Prawns on Avocado selling in Marks & Spencer or it’s Chinese equivalent; that will be the time to wonder why new product messages are the norm in marketing communications – Adversus solem ne loquitor - Don’t speak against the sun
While N Asia seeks novelty, the kind of news value sought is different across markets Established Brand New Product New Information New Treatment Profile of strong (top performing) ads in each country in relation to Asia average for all ads COMM. STRATEGY News Value Indonesia Korea India Shanghai Malaysia Philippines Thailand Taiwan Japan
Millward Brown additionally invoke Geert-Hofstede’s work on Chinese cultural dimensions. Unsurprisingly uncertainty avoidance, long-term orientation, personal steadiness, stability, thrift, loyalty and trust define the Chinese as in the following slide from their presentation
Geert-Hofstede’s work on cultural dimensions is universally recognised as a robust and valid construct to differentiate cultures.
Hofstede’s model identifies five primary dimensions to assist in differentiating cultures:
Power Distance – PDI (the degree of equality, or inequality, between people in the country's society)
Individualism – IDV (the degree to which the society reinforces individual or collective achievement and interpersonal relationships)
Masculinity – MAS (the degree to which the society reinforces the traditional masculine work role model of achievement, control, and power)
Uncertainty Avoidance – UAI (the level of tolerance for uncertainty and ambiguity within the society - i.e. unstructured situations)
Long Term Orientation (LTO) – this dimension, based on Confucian dynamism, is a recent addition (after Hofstede conducted an additional international study with a survey instrument developed with Chinese employees and managers). It has been applied to 23
To determine clusters of countries, we undertook a hierarchical cluster analysis across the five dimensions
Big cultural differences on ‘Individualism’ Brazil Russia India China Europe 50% 46% 58% 70% 35% “ It is more important to do your duty than to live for your own gain” Source: TGI database
China has a long cultural affinity towards Confucius. There’s no escaping the legacy of Chinese Philosophy around his teachings but Metropolitan China is now: short term, environmentally irresponsible, money oriented, ostentatious, short-term-thinking, style over content culture that ignores the wise teachings of Confucius. The real picture is to to see what’s happening in the larger agrarian Chinese Economy?
Hofstede’s work to measure the different dynamics across cultures used a sample collected using IBM employees between 1967 and 1973 covering more than 70 countries.
Hofstede’s cultural dimensions Low High Pakistan Individualism US Nordic Masculinity Japan Jamaica Uncertainty Avoidance Greece Nordic Power D i s t a n c e Russia West Africa Long-term Orientation China To determine clusters of countries, we undertook a hierarchical cluster analysis across the five dimensions