Kevin Roberts, CEO worldwide of Saatchi & Saatchi, stated in 2002: Anyone who wants to go global has to understand the local their own local and the locals of all their customers. People live in the local. Ive never met a global consumer. I never expect to. We define ourselves by our differences. Its called identity- self, family, and nation. Global standardization of product or communication will not be helpful as the markets differ in their structures and socio-cultural frameworks. Consumer values and the advertisement values should be comparable when any offering is made.
Douglas Daft, Coca-Colas CEO, stated in 2000: People dont buy drinks globally. In the year 2000 the Coca-Cola Company, which had until then been the prototype of a global advertiser, decided to get closer to local markets because of declining profitability. Coca-Colas CEO Douglas Daft was quoted in the Financial Times, We kept standardizing our practices, while local sensitivity had become absolutely essential to success. According to Daft, the general direction is away from global advertising. We need to make our advertising as relevant as possible to the local market.
As the sociologist-anthropologist David Howes says, The assumption that goods like Coca-Cola on entering a culture will retain and communicate the values they are accorded by their culture of origin must be questioned. Often these goods are transformed in accordance with the values of the receiving culture. (Mooij and Marieke K. de, 2004, p. 16) The global customer remains within the minds of the marketer while he serves local consumer even if his operations are global. As indicated by the work of various researchers it is clear that companies working globally actually serve the local customer and function globally .
For the global success of any organization it needs to understand the local culture and preferences and design its business strategies around that. Conceptual Framework for Special Occasion Packaging Literature review has provided understanding of various concepts like packaging, culture, special occasion, gift packaging and many others. In the literature review there is clear indications of the interdependence of various demographic factors to the cultural and packaging variables. Individuals gender, age and ethnic background may be important factor of his/her culture and this will have influence on the way they make choices.
Special occasions can be as personal as birthday to someone and can be a socio-cultural activity like Christmas. During the festival season what are the attributes of packaging which influence consumers, whether or not these attributes are related to the demographic profile of the consumer. How consumer would like to gift someone in terms of packaging and presentation of it. Packaging being an important aspect of the marketing mix it is crucial for marketer to understand the impact of packaging on the consumer especially when they are doing purchase for someone else as a gift.
Packaging during special occasions can be characterized by the use of bright and attractive Colours, various shapes and styles, size, text and graphics materials. Packaging is important during festival season to the consumer as well as the marketer. Consumer wants to have special shopping for his near and dear ones where as marketer tries to utilize this opportunity to serve the consumer profitably. This study is an effort to understand the role of demographic profile and packaging attributes in the decision making of consumer during the festival seasons or special occasions.
This investigation will enable managers to understand various aspects of packaging aesthetics and how products packaging can be designed keeping in mind these aesthetics in order to make delightful consumer experience within the marketplace Culture indicates the group norms within a society. People deviating from that group norm face the punishment of the group. Hence it is very different to bring a change within a night in the cultural sphere of an individual rather it would be easier to understand the culture and changing business strategies according to that.
There has been constant change in the cultural set ups of various society. Worldwide the family influence is declining. The time with people is less as compared to what it used to even few decades back. People have less time for in house, spouse or parent child influence. The divorce rates are increasing and the numbers of living relationships are increasing. The marriage age is growing day by day and the age people attain parenthood has also changed. Most of the family is nuclear now. The level of religious influence is also changing.
The educational institutions and the teaching methodologies, syllabus everything has changed from the past and has strong influence on the culture and society. Culture is being inculcated through family, religion and schools. It rewards socially gratifying responses and the person who adheres to the norms of culture. Culture is an adaptive concept. There are various factors which are being influenced by culture. These are as follows: ¢ Individuals sense of self and space ¢ Communication and language within the society and outer world. ¢ Mental processes and learning.
¢ Work habits and practices ¢ Dress and appearance of an individual ¢ Food and feeding habits has changed due to changes in lifestyle and globalization. ¢ Less Time is available for each task and people have become time consciousness ¢ Equations of Relationships have changed. ¢ Values and norms are continuously changing within a society. ¢ Beliefs and attitudes get influenced by culture. Consumer behaviour Consumer is a king. This is the reason various companies are trying to serve their consumer in the best way they can. The markets are different worldwide.
On one hand marketer has markets like UK and US which are matured one where innovation and holding the market share is important as competitions is real too tough. On the other hand markets like China and India are growing with their growing population and their needs. These markets required consistent effort to increase market share of the marketer. It becomes crucial for the marketer to understand consumer behaviour to offer the best solution to their needs and maintain or increase their customer base. She knew she was paying more per apple than if shed got them from the market stall or the corner grocers.
She got four M&S apples for the price of five, six or seven elsewhere but the M&S variety were high-quality, washed and came in plastic, protective packaging, not a brown paper bag. (BLACKHURST 2004) Figure II. 3: Impact of Culture on Different Variables Individual Differences: Each individual differ with other in the resources s/he has. These consumer Resources are time, money, information reception and processing capabilities. Consumers come from different socio-economic backgrounds. The level of education they have and knowledge also differs from consumer to consumer. Throughout his life he develops attitudes towards things in his life.
The factors which can motivate a person differ from person to person based on his background, age, family structure and so on. The personality of an individual customer, value system and lifestyle makes difference in his buying behaviour and information search process. Environmental Influences Any individual lives in a society where various external factors impact him. The government policies, sociological structures, culture, social class or status, personal influence, power it enjoys within the society, family and particular situation in his life has influence on his buying behaviour.
Psychological Processes The psychological process is very important to understand consumer behaviour. While information processing it is possible that consumer has selective processing in which he sees or hears only those things which he wants to hear. For instance a person who is new father or mother is more likely to be attentive for the advertisements where infants or toddlers are shown. This selective attention is due to the particular period in their lifestyle, situation and family. This develops selective processing of the information.
How fast or slow consumer is to learn new things, new product details and its benefits. How behaviour and attitude of consumer can be changed or changes. There are various factors influencing consumer decision making process. Some are as follows: Size Colour Intensity Contrast Position Directionality Movement Isolation Novelty Learned stimuli Attractive spokesperson ¢ Attitude towards gifts packaging Hine (1995) states the importance of packaging in terms of psychological factors like feelings and excitement.
According to Hine every package and anything on a package is capable of triggering feelings such as excitement, as well as beliefs about the brand and its trustworthiness, because when we look at a package, we see a personality and a set of values. Packaging is an effective tool utilized by people in order to convey mystery about the product inside, create excitement and interest and share happiness. . There are various attributes to packaging which impacts its overall presentation. These attributes are package design, Colour, material used and occasion. Good design has intrinsic appeal. This intrinsic appeal is essentially aesthetic.
Colours are important attribute of any packaging be it normal packaging or gif packaging. There are certain products which can be recalled along with the Colours associated with them. For instance IBM with blue, Coca-Cola with red Hine (1995) further describes the emotional, cultural and expectation related importance of Colours used in packaging. Colours trigger physiological reaction in the receiver. This can be emotional. Blue can make a person calm while red can make him excited. There are various symbolic qualities attached to Colours. Colours come to symbolize general qualities in all cultures.
These are as follows in the west: ¢ White”delicacy; ¢ Black” mourning or business; ¢ Red”strength, vitality, excitement, danger; ¢ Yellow”youth, hope, and cheer; ¢ Blue”harmony, honesty, and calmness; ¢ Green”the outdoors and country life; ¢ Brown”friendliness, trust, and reliability. People expect different things with the packaging they see for products and gifts. Howard (1992) states the importance of considering age and purpose factors in the gift wrapping for children. According to Howard (1992) Childrens packaging is often a combination of unusual form and complex surface decoration.
When my painting teacher in art school called me a great surface decorator, I knew it was not a compliment; yet, childrens surface decorating is meaningful and significant. I. Methodology In the previous studies focus had ranged from studying the culture, packaging technologies, packaging aspects with the international context and many others. Though consumer feedbacks, socio-cultural influences, political legal frameworks had provided vital inputs on packaging and its roles but less efforts were done to understand the consumer behaviour during special occasion for this very important aspect of marketing mix.
Organizations have been using packaging for various purposes. Packaging is used for protecting, communicating, safety purposes and presentation by the organizations. . It has been seen from previous studies that though the colour, typography, shapes and sizes and material of the packaging has been considered as important components, most of the studies conducted has been in the area of either packaging material or style in normal conditions. For special occasions organizations develop special strategies well in advance.
For Christmas the preparations usually starts from the month of July August in order to meet the excess demand of the products. But in the case of other attributes or all the attributes of packaging during special occasion, hardly any work has done. Various components like colour and graphics have been important for the packaging during these occasions. This study will provide information which will help organizations in packaging during special occasions.
There are various factors influencing consumer decision-making process i. e.socio-psychological. This is important for strategy makers and decision makers to have this vital information. The way this information is utilised within an organization is very important. The study is based on the Literature review. Secondary resources like websites of major retailers, journals, prestigious magazines and books and references regarding the study in business industry will be produced by various marketing forums, seminar and research papers, institutional publications and industry magazines. Primary data is important for this study.
Fieldwork for the study had mainly involved structured questionnaires, concentrating on the consumers of retail organization Mark & Spencer. The study tries to identify personal details like demographic details of the respondents, level of involvement with different packaging aspects during special occasion, experiences, knowledge and other factors where they have utilised some form of information in their decision making process in their buying behaviour. The issues to be asked by the questionnaires will fall into some major categories or topic areas of packaging and consumer behaviour.
The data is analyzed with the help of simple data analysis tools MS Excel. Research methodology is an important aspect of any market research or survey. It describes the objectives, data collected, sampling, variables and other issues regarding research. Any research methodology defines the activity of research, the way it should be preceded, the way to measure its progress and the benchmarks or expected results of success. In this particular study the data has been collected with the help of a structured questionnaire.
This questionnaire contained close-ended questions with the options available to the respondents. These questions were designed with the view that the respondent can respond to the questionnaire in shortest possible time. The language used is simple. The sentences are short and clear. Data has been collected by a survey conducted close to the Marks and Spencer retail organization, Birmingham. The respondents ranged from university students, working people, house wives and others representing both the genders and all the age groups mentioned in the questionnaire.
The results have been divided into these same categories to ensure validity and reliability. General information in regard to identifiers was utilized in order to ensure that there would be no bias. This information provided the researcher with a more clarified view of perceptions in regard to the impact of packaging on special occasions. I. i. Hypothesis It is the intention of this work to discover the components which are very important for consumers during special occasions for gift giving or receiving.
The questions to answer include several considerations. Those considerations include: the number of times the individual gives gift to others in a specific duration, what is the ethnic background of the consumer and whether it has any significance in the decision making of consumer for gift packaging; how various components of packaging are ranked by the customer, which are the most important components, whether or not gender plays any role in the gift giving and packaging decisions, views of the respondents as a gift receiver and sender about its packaging.
In applying knowledge continuation of the research is managed by inquiring if respondents agree with various packaging components and their impacts on them. This series of questionnaires concerns different viewpoints to provide a more valid and expressive result. In so doing, inquiries were carried out by questionnaire for the respondents from various ethnic background, age group and gender. The qualitative research was conducted through an interview with the employee of Marks and Spencer about the special occasion and gift packaging.
The interview was based on a structured questionnaire with set of questions. These questions are open ended and view points of the respondent has been noted cautiously I. ii. Research objectives The objective in this study is to understand the impact of social occasions on packaging. The study is balanced in its validity and reliability by results in questionnaires delivered to respondents and the employee of Marks and Spencer ¢ The objective is to discover whether the components of packaging have impact on the consumer decision making.
¢ The objective also includes understanding the relationship among the components of packaging, culture and demographic profile of the consumer. ¢ The other objective is to understand the level to which organization gets involve in packaging during the special occasions. To meet these objectives the primary research is designed based on structured questionnaire to collect data to understand the level of involvement in the decision making for the packaging and its aspects. I. iii. Primary research I. iii. a. Data collection.
Primary data is collected with the help of structured questionnaire from the area surrounding colleges in and around the Birmingham. These data collected by various kind of respondents from different age group, sex and ethnic background of people doing shopping in Mark & Spencer. Data was gained from a specific area for ease of accessibility and for targeted accuracy lending reliability and validity to the research process. Data is collected to understand the attitude and consumer behaviour of the components of packaging.
Due to the fact that researcher is working with the organization it is easy to manage and collect data from this particular area and the focus was managed accordingly. The data for this work was managed through a single questionnaire handed out to respondents of different backgrounds in front of Mark & Spencer, Birmingham researchers location. The researcher utilized gender identifiers and numbers or letters to separate each questionnaire for validity and reliability of results and to ensure bias reductions. The questionnaire is located in the Appendix section for understanding of the questions.
The majority of questions in the questionnaire are closed ended questions. Each question in the demographic section had options available to the respondents and respondent has to tick on the most appropriate one. On the other hand the situation specific questions, there are statements given and the respondent has to tick the most appropriate term based on to what level he agrees to the statement or not. These questions are based on the Likert Scale concepts. The questionnaire is designed on the basis of the in puts of the literature review and previous studies conducted by various other researchers.
One question is ranking question where respondent has to rank various components of the packaging on the basis of his preference. These provided the list of factors to be covered which helped researchers to narrow down the important factors which are important to fulfil the objectives of the study. The questionnaire has been distributed among the target respondents. The respondents had been explained the objectives for which the study was conducted and any other risk associated with the study. The confidentiality of identity was insured.
Respondent had been ensured that this data will not be used in any other purpose than this particular study. The process to deliver and collect these questionnaires spanned approximately two weeks. I. iii. b. Variables The variables involved included age groups, gender and ethnic background. The next sets of variables were various components of packaging and consumer behaviour for the same. Limitations in these variables include the fact that marital status, family structure and economic status of the various respondents were not included in the research paradigm.