Ethnocentric consumers feel it is wrong to purchase foreign-made products.
They can be targeted by stressing nationalistic themes.
Cultural relativism and ethnocentrism are the two flip sides of one coin where both of these rather philosophical notions are intertwined. Ethnocentrism landed as a concept amongst different nations earlier than cultural relativism which got to be devised to counter ethnocentrism. The most significant feature related to these notions and ideas is the fact that both of these come with specific set of followers which can be specific individuals and specific nations as well.
Ethnocentrism is the extreme opposite of cultural relativism. The follower of this philosophy will happen not only to consider his or her culture the most supreme of all but that particular person will judge other cultures by comparing these to his or her specific culture. This notion falls in deep and there is a sharp contrast to cultural relativism which focuses on the better and unbiased understanding of other cultures and the related values.
The attitude of ethnocentrism brings about both positive and negative consequences to the group and to those outside the group. One of the advantages that it brings about is that it is unlikely to experience internal conflicts. Given that, the group unanimously believes in a particular way of doing things, they abide with them and no opposition is likely to develop. The level of cohesion in such a group is very high and it is very essential for developmental purposes. Another advantage is that an ethnocentric group is immune to external influence. For example communities that greatly value their traditions are unlikely to accept practices that are abolished by the values of the group like homosexuality. This enables them to maintain their long valued traditions for future generations.
Since we are in a globalized world, this approach would not be practical for marketers. But we can use this approach very smoothly for international products. Then we could easily reach that market. Also we can apply this technique for local products. For an example Lanka Bell is promoting “seeyata seeyakma APE”.
In case of international brands, the main issue is that we will not be able to capture the foreign marketwhen there are so many consumers who are ethnocentric. The best examples are from Chinese and Japanese people. They value their culture and it is reflected even from their main language that they usein their country. So there is an issue when we are going to enter new international markets. The best solution to overcome this situation is that we should be flexible and adapt to those ethnical groups. We should value their culture too.
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Those who want to show respect for other people and to communicate effectively in business, need to adopt a positive viewpoint, in the form of cultural pluralism which is the practice of accepting multiple cultures in their own terms. When crossing cultural boundaries, you will be even more effective if you move beyond simple acceptance and adapt your communication style to those new cultures you encounter- even integrating aspects of those cultures into your own. Few simple habits can help.
Avoid assumptions: Do not assume that others will act the same way as you do, use language and symbols the same way as you do, or even operate from the same values and beliefs. For instance, in a comparison of the 10 most important values in three cultures, people from United States had no value in common with people from Japanese or Arab cultures.
Avoid judgement: When people act differently, don’t conclude that they are wrong or that their way is invalid or inferior.
Acknowledge distinctions: Don’t ignore the difference between another person’s culture and your own.
Unfortunately, overcoming ethnocentrism and stereotyping is not a simple task, even for people who are highly motivated to do so. Moreover, research suggests that people often have beliefs and biases that they are not even aware of- and that may even conflict with the beliefs that they think they have.
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