Part A Compare and contrast standardization with customization of international marketing strategies. Part B Is one approach better than the other?

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Part A

Compare and contrast standardization with customization of international marketing strategies.

The notion of globalization - a global firm pursuing a global strategy - is very appealing to managers. (Hardy, 1994, p365). As soon as the firms decide to expand into the global marketplace, the international marketing manager should determine what strategy would be adopted to mix the four P's of marketing: product, pricing, promotion, and place in the complex environment in future. In other words, the manager must decide either the standardisation strategy or customization strategy is suitable for the particular foreign market.

1.The meanings of standardization and customization strategies

Standardization became a popular buzzword in the 1980s, as proponents such as Kenichi Ohmate argued that customers in the Triad were becoming increasingly alike, with similar incomes, educational achievements, lifestyles, and aspirations. (Manoney, Trigg, Griffin, and Pustay, 1998, p612). Therefore, standardization strategy indicates that the firm tends to offer the similar products with same price and distribution to the consumers.

Coca-Cola was one of the first international businesses to adopt this strategy and obtained a great achievement. By contrast, customization strategy pays more attention to the needs of different customers and tries to satisfy the varied demand. The firms that adopted this strategy tend to provide dissimilar products with unlike price, advertisement, etc. Haier for example, which is one of the largest electronic products companies in China, its posters in china are two children without any clothes. However, the posters in Middle East are two children with local clothes because the Moslem culture requests Haier to do like that.

2.The different focus between standardization and customization strategies

In fact, standardization focuses on the cost side of the profit equation. It allows a firm to be able to decrease the costs and makes the firm's profit increase.