Where do you view movies?

Such a simple question - but the answer can reveal rich data about consumer behaviour which can be priceless when devising modern marketing strategies.  Really understanding customers by knowing about their lifestyles and behaviour, and therefore appreciating what they value, is central to creating effective marketing.  And effective marketing is vital if a business of any size is to continue to grow.  Without an intelligent strategy marketeers cannot frame an effective value proposition.  Right now, because of slow economic growth in the United States and Europe, many Western companies are making strategic investments predominately centred on the faster growing economies of Asia.  But many of these businesses fail to fully realise how very different Asian consumer behaviour is compared with the Western lifestyle.  They are deceived by the similarities, and make arrogant assumptions, because Western companies are inclined to presume that all Asian consumers are eager to adopt Western behaviours. I’ve come across several top executives in multi-national companies who ought to know better but who nevertheless take a totally Western-centric view of “market maturity.”  This out-dated model is based on the concept that whatever product or service is developed and accepted in the United States will find similar acceptance in Europe.  And this naive presumption is then extended to embrace Asia: as the Asian markets “mature”, surely Asians will adopt behaviours and lifestyles similar to the West, albeit with some local variation?  You may have already come across the word “glocal” to describe this phenomenon where the basic product or service emanating from the USA remains essentially the same worldwide with a little modification for Europe, and then some further modification to suit the Asian culture.  Glocal is the term often used to describe the marketing strategy behind American multi-nationals like McDonald’s.  You can clearly see this concept at work by comparing the McDonald’s US offering here, its European version with a little modification here, and the appropriately named Chicken Maharajar-Mac available in India.  Please note, that in order to get a good comparison I haven’t used the ubiquitous McDonald’s hamburger.  This wouldn’t be appropriate in a country like India where the cow is a sacred animal which, in a way, makes the point very clearly.  However much one tried to adapt and modify a “hamburger”, (actually, of course, a beef-burger), to sell in India, it would never be accepted unless the product was specifically known as not containing any meat from a cow.  So, for the Indian market, McDonald’s core product, the beef-burger, remains strictly off the menu.  Instead McDonald’s have changed and expanded the products which use chicken or fish to make-up their core product on the subcontinent. I’m sure that you can appreciate the flaw in the widely accepted “glocal” strategy: that there is a one-way traffic in ideas, (with just local modifications), taking place from West to East.  This blinkered type of thinking means that otherwise bright executives miss lots of business opportunities.  The West has a great deal to learn from the East and needs to be adaptable so that the movement in ideas, products and services is two-way.  As an example of the differences between West and East, I’ve extracted the data on the above chart from some global research, called The Visual Life Study, undertaken by Intel.   An overview of the report was released early in January this year.  This study was used as the basis for the international “Visual Life” advertising campaign, used to promote Intel’s current crop of 2nd Generation Core processors.  I’ve taken a subset of the data that was a response to the simple question: “Where do you view movies?” Movies and Sport are staples of the international TV diet, so asking where people view movies reveals a lot about today’s TV viewing behaviour and media consumption generally.  In many ways the behaviour of the so-called “emerging economies” of Asia already point to the media activities that many Western consumers will increasingly come to adopt in the future.  According to the Intel research, 65% of Chinese consumers already view their movies on a computer, as do 34% of people in South Korea and 27% in India.  Compare these figures for those in the Western economies: just 7% of people in the United States, and 8% in Germany, view their movies online.  In terms of marketing communication in Asia, these figures contain a clear message: don’t overestimate the power of TV advertising to promote awareness among potential customers. In Asian countries, the computer, often plugged into a large LCD screen, is usually the focus of attention in the living room, frequently taking the place that Western consumers reserve for the television set.  And more movies are viewed individually on a laptop, or with just one other person sharing the smaller screen.  Also the young Chinese have a love of technology and are quickly adapting to online movie viewing from their TV sets, scroll to the bottom of this page and watch the video.  In the West, the TV in the sitting room is the primary place on which movies are watched: 75% in the United States and 76% in Germany.  And this is why, in the USA and Europe, advertising on TV is still the most popular method of creating brand awareness and, as the audience is relatively large, it is also by far the most expensive.  In Asia the comparative figures are: 36% in India; 22% in South Korea; and 20% in China.  As watching movies on TV in Asia is not the dominant consumer behaviour, advertising on TV just doesn’t have the audience reach (the necessary percentage of total population) or, of course, the effectiveness that TV has in Western economies. A similar disparity in marketing communication between the West and East is shown by the difference in consumer behaviour regarding the importance of actually going to the cinema to watch a movie.  A mere 10% of the population in the United States and Germany watch movies at the cinema, and these audiences are primarily younger people.  By comparison, people of all ages regularly go to the cinema to enjoy movies in South Korea (37% of movie consumption) and in India (28%).  So in these countries advertising in the cinema is an excellent, as well as a low-cost, method of raising awareness about a product or service.  But be careful, not all Asian countries are the same.  In China only 7% of people watch movies in a cinema, even fewer than those in the United States or Germany.  So if you plan to market anything in China, being aware of this type of interesting variance in behaviour provides invaluable insights.  In a fast-moving global market going “glocal” with a product or service may be highly appropriate, or a disaster, but an unbiased and thoughtful analysis of all available data, like Intel’s, should help to keep you in the picture. August 2011 
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2011

Where do you view

movies?

Such a simple question - but the answer can reveal rich data about consumer behaviour which can be priceless when devising modern marketing strategies.  Really understanding customers by knowing about their lifestyles and behaviour, and therefore appreciating what they value, is central to creating effective marketing.  And effective marketing is vital if a business of any size is to continue to grow.  Without an intelligent strategy marketeers cannot frame an effective value proposition.  Right now, because of slow economic growth in the United States and Europe, many Western companies are making strategic investments predominately centred on the faster growing economies of Asia.  But many of these businesses fail to fully realise how very different Asian consumer behaviour is compared with the Western lifestyle.  They are deceived by the similarities, and make arrogant assumptions, because Western companies are inclined to presume that all Asian consumers are eager to adopt Western behaviours. I’ve come across several top executives in multi-national companies who ought to know better but who nevertheless take a totally Western-centric view of “market maturity.”  This out- dated model is based on the concept that whatever product or service is developed and accepted in the United States will find similar acceptance in Europe.  And this naive presumption is then extended to embrace Asia: as the Asian markets “mature”, surely Asians will adopt behaviours and lifestyles similar to the West, albeit with some local variation?  You may have already come across the word “glocal” to describe this phenomenon where the basic product or service emanating from the USA remains essentially the same worldwide with a little modification for Europe, and then some further modification to suit the Asian culture.  Glocal is the term often used to describe the marketing strategy behind American multi-nationals like McDonald’s.  You can clearly see this concept at work by comparing the McDonald’s US offering here, its European version with a little modification here, and the appropriately named Chicken Maharajar-Mac available in India.  Please note, that in order to get a good comparison I haven’t used the ubiquitous McDonald’s hamburger.  This wouldn’t be appropriate in a country like India where the cow is a sacred animal which, in a way, makes the point very clearly.  However much one tried to adapt and modify a “hamburger”, (actually, of course, a beef-burger), to sell in India, it would never be accepted unless the product was specifically known as not containing any meat from a cow.  So, for the Indian market, McDonald’s core product, the beef-burger, remains strictly off the menu.  Instead McDonald’s have changed and expanded the products which use chicken or fish to make-up their core product on the subcontinent. I’m sure that you can appreciate the flaw in the widely accepted “glocal” strategy: that there is a one-way traffic in ideas, (with just local modifications), taking place from West to East.  This blinkered type of thinking means that otherwise bright executives miss lots of business opportunities.  The West has a great deal to learn from the East and needs to be adaptable so that the movement in ideas, products and services is two-way.  As an example of the differences between West and East, I’ve extracted the data on the above chart from some global research, called The Visual Life Study, undertaken by Intel.   An overview of the report was released early in January this year This study was used as the basis for the international “Visual Life” advertising campaign, used to promote Intel’s current crop of 2nd Generation Core processors.  I’ve taken a subset of the data that was a response to the simple question: “Where do you view movies?” Movies and Sport are staples of the international TV diet, so asking where people view movies reveals a lot about today’s TV viewing behaviour and media consumption generally.  In many ways the behaviour of the so-called “emerging economies” of Asia already point to the media activities that many Western consumers will increasingly come to adopt in the future.  According to the Intel research, 65% of Chinese consumers already view their movies on a computer, as do 34% of people in South Korea and 27% in India.  Compare these figures for those in the Western economies: just 7% of people in the United States, and 8% in Germany, view their movies online.  In terms of marketing communication in Asia, these figures contain a clear message: don’t overestimate the power of TV advertising to promote awareness among potential customers. In Asian countries, the computer, often plugged into a large LCD screen, is usually the focus of attention in the living room, frequently taking the place that Western consumers reserve for the television set.  And more movies are viewed individually on a laptop, or with just one other person sharing the smaller screen.  Also the young Chinese have a love of technology and are quickly adapting to online movie viewing from their TV sets, scroll to the bottom of this page and watch the video.  In the West, the TV in the sitting room is the primary place on which movies are watched: 75% in the United States and 76% in Germany.  And this is why, in the USA and Europe, advertising on TV is still the most popular method of creating brand awareness and, as the audience is relatively large, it is also by far the most expensive.  In Asia the comparative figures are: 36% in India; 22% in South Korea; and 20% in China.  As watching movies on TV in Asia is not the dominant consumer behaviour, advertising on TV just doesn’t have the audience reach (the necessary percentage of total population) or, of course, the effectiveness that TV has in Western economies. A similar disparity in marketing communication between the West and East is shown by the difference in consumer behaviour regarding the importance of actually going to the cinema to watch a movie.  A mere 10% of the population in the United States and Germany watch movies at the cinema, and these audiences are primarily younger people.  By comparison, people of all ages regularly go to the cinema to enjoy movies in South Korea (37% of movie consumption) and in India (28%).  So in these countries advertising in the cinema is an excellent, as well as a low-cost, method of raising awareness about a product or service.  But be careful, not all Asian countries are the same.  In China only 7% of people watch movies in a cinema, even fewer than those in the United States or Germany.  So if you plan to market anything in China, being aware of this type of interesting variance in behaviour provides invaluable insights.  In a fast- moving global market going “glocal” with a product or service may be highly appropriate, or a disaster, but an unbiased and thoughtful analysis of all available data, like Intel’s, should help to keep you in the picture. August 2011 
Click to return to page Click here to download the PowerPoint chart: Click here to download the PowerPoint chart: