Problems in International Marketing research

06/09/2022 0 By indiafreenotes

There can be a temptation to go too broad

Linked to this, sometimes when companies set out on international marketing research projects, they make the mistake of going too broad and trying to understand a region as a whole. Another error we see is firms commissioning research to target one market and then using this as a jumping off point into others with “similar” attributes. This inevitably leads in costly mistakes as brands map their assumptions about one market onto another.

To avoid this, be clear on the emphasis of your research. Where are you looking to focus? Why? Looking too broadly across a region of different markets, or exploring how an entire product range might perform, can cloud the picture.

International markets are incredibly diverse

Some business fails to appreciate the diversity within a region or indeed a country. Only by rooting out the nuances of different geographical areas, cultures and consumers, can you get an accurate picture of what people value and whether your products and services might succeed.

Customer Understanding

In particular trying to understand the customer or the consumers in an international market. Often, we have to conduct international marketing research. That does come with some specific challenges or hurdles that we have to overcome.

Language Issues

One language issue is translating our materials. Whether it’s a survey or interview questions or even an advertisement, translating those things into the native language in another country can prove really challenging. Often, things just don’t translate literally. So, we have to translate and then back translate to make sure that the meaning doesn’t change. That can be really critical to getting our message across.

Cultural Issues

Another issue that we have to consider are just broad cultural issues. People from certain cultures are going to be much more willing to engage in discussions with us about our product or our brand or other marketing issues than certain people from other cultures. That is, some cultures are reluctant to answer fully or tell you what you want to hear.

Finding the right research partner

The next big question is whether you have the research capabilities to conduct meaningful projects internationally. Most brands and their research partners can run domestic research projects with ease. But if you’re in the UK, say, even going as far afield as France or Germany requires different sensibilities and capabilities. The more international you get, the harder you need to look for that kind of experience and expertise.

Technical Issues

We don’t have the same levels of technology everywhere in the world. While that level of technology is probably rising almost everywhere, we’re not all starting from the same place.

So, if we plan to use any real level of technology in conducting our marketing research, we’d better make sure that that level of technology is supported in the market that we’re going into.

Ensuring that the project is realistic from the outset

This is where all the other challenges in international marketing research come together: which markets, what purpose, the capabilities available, and the effectiveness of the output all within a budget that makes sense. There are always going to be limits to what’s practical and the last thing any client needs is to be spending large sums testing international markets to no effect.

Bringing together local and global expertise

This is one of the biggest challenges in international marketing research and there has to be a collaborative effort and a shared understanding of the mission, the methodology and the insights to overcome this. A research team at HQ might work with a local marketing team to understand how to position a product for success in an emerging market. But if the teams are siloed and don’t have a consistent understanding of the brief, their approach to researching the market and their findings might not actually help deliver on the challenge at hand.

Faced by research:

Problems with secondary data:

Secondary data are not available in adequate volume. Further, the secondary data collected are unreliable. They suffer from lack of comparability of data.

Multiplicity of markets:

Problems of numerous markets are always experienced in overseas market research. Research project covers a number of foreign markets. This ultimately augments the costs and problems involved in overseas market research.

Problems of communication:

Different countries have different languages. They create problems of translation and communication. Consumer market research is met with more communication problems than industrial market research, because of the fact that industrial market research focuses on technical factors alone. But consumer market research takes care of every pertinent detail related to market conditions.

Problems in collecting primary data:

Buyer behavior of customers varies from country to country. As people behave differently, collecting primary data from them is comparatively difficult.