Influence of Culture in Marketing Essay

7445 Words Jan 7th, 2011 30 Pages
I. Culture
I.1 How to define culture?
Culture is a system of shared beliefs, values, customs, behaviors and artifacts that the members of society use to interact with their world and with one another. It is a combination of thoughts, feelings, attitudes, beliefs, values, and behavior pattern that are shared by racial, religious, ethnic or social group of people.
Anthropologist James Spradley believes culture to be :”the acquired knowledge people use to interpret experience and generate behavior”.
Culture can relate to a country (national culture), a part of a community (sub-culture) or an organization (corporate culture). It is widely known that a person is not born with a culture, and that culture is learned throughout a person’s
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One may break the cultural norms of another country without being informed, and people from different cultures might feel uncomfortable in each other’s presence without knowing exactly why (for example, two speakers may unconsciously refer to one another with different honorifics).
When observing a culture, an important issue to be careful about is not to over-generalize about traits that one observes in the respective culture. There are often significant individual differences between cultures. There is a tendency for people to stereotype cultures in a way or another (e.g. individualistic rather than collectivistic).

I.6 Characteristics of culture
Culture being a complex and important phenomena we can point out several characteristics of culture:
• Culture is a human achievement (not of a single individual but of the whole social group)
Social: it is a social heritage that an individual receives and at his turn must transmit. Things that are private are not part of culture.
Laborious: culture is intricate and rich in detail therefore it has to be possessed with much personal effort. One has to learn the language, support the present type of government and understand and reinterpret the scientific method for every generation.
• Culture is comprehensive
All parts must fit together, having a certain logic. For example, bowing and the strong desire to avoid embarrassment (Japan) are unified in their

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