"Comparative Thick Description: Articulating similarities and differences in local consumer experience"

Details

Serval ID
serval:BIB_B2E9643EBBFA
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Title
"Comparative Thick Description: Articulating similarities and differences in local consumer experience"
Journal
International Marketing Review
Author(s)
Jean-Claude Usunier  Stéphane Sbizzera
ISSN
978-1-78190-672-9
Publication state
Published
Issued date
02/2013
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
30
Number
1
Pages
42-55
Language
english
Abstract
Purpose - Local marketing decisions are too often made on a dichotomous basis, either standardize
or fully adapt. However, similarities are too substantial and differences go too deep to be ignored.
This article aims to articulate similarities and differences in local consumer experience across
multiple contexts.
Design/methodology/approach - Language, being used daily in local contexts, reflects local
knowledge (Geertz). This paper shows how translation/back-translation can be used as a discovery
tool, along with depth interviews and checks of researcher interpretations by informants, to generate
cognitive mapping of consumption and taste experiences. Local words, used as emic signals, are
combined into full portraits of the local experiences as narratives linking people to products and taste.
Local portraits can then be merged to derive commonalities emergent from within the contexts studied.
The comparative thick description framework is applied to the bitterness and crunchiness taste
experiences in ten countries (China, Croatia, El Salvador, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Thailand,
Tunisia, Turkey) and nine languages.
Findings - Local experiences in several different languages and countries in different areas of the
world can be surveyed, compared, and organized into cognitive maps (Eden), which highlight
commonalities and differences between contexts. In essence, differences are qualitative, dealing with
creolization patterns, local consumption experience, local preferences, perceptions, and associations.
Research limitations/implications - This approach can be considered as interpretive and,
although driven by a systematic approach, depends on researcher and informant expertise and rigor.
Practical implications - Cognitive maps help evaluate cross-national differences and similarities in
local markets. The emergent similarities and differences are highly meaningful for glocalizing
marketing strategies, in terms of advertising, branding, and packaging.
Originality/value - Significant insights derived from this method can be tested in a more traditional
and applied manner. This allows quicker insights into new local marketplaces and a progressive
enrichment of cognitive maps with new languages and countries.
Keywords
Comparative consumer behaviour, Language, Cross-cultural, Taste experience
Create date
24/05/2013 10:47
Last modification date
21/08/2019 6:15
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