Pushing Paper Can Be Fun

11389 WordsOct 14, 201446 Pages
Chapter 12 CULTURE AND CROSS-CULTURAL INFLUENCES AUTHORS' OVERVIEW OF THE CHAPTER In this chapter we discuss the broad, macro social influences of culture on consumer behavior. We also consider cross-cultural differences--variations in the culture of different societies or countries. Culture is a macro influence because it is a very large-scale aspect of the social environment that has broad and pervasive effects on consumers' affect (moods and emotions), cognitions (beliefs and values), and behaviors. We begin by discussing two approaches to the study of culture. The most common approach is to describe the content of a culture by identifying the typical beliefs, attitudes, goals, and values held by most people in a society. The content of a culture also includes the typical aspects of the physical and social environment. Although most researchers have focused on the common values held by most people in a society, we define culture more broadly as the meanings that are shared by most people in a social group. Then, we briefly discuss several issues in cultural analysis. First, shared cultural meaning can be analyzed at different levels or size of social group--at the level of an entire country, a subculture (a racial or ethnic group), a city (New Orleans or Miami), or a much smaller group (a group of co-workers or a family). Normally, marketers think about culture in terms of very large social groups such as a country or a large subgroup within a country (Hispanic people in the U.S.; people who live in New England). We briefly review three ways of measuring the content of a culture in terms of the shared meanings. They include content analyses of materials produced by the culture (analyzing the number of references to money in books or TV programs). A second approach involves ethnography research when researchers go into the "field" and closely

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