Religions, Christmas, and International Marketing


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Historically, the religious tradition in the United States, based on Christianity and Judaism, has emphasized hard work, thrift, and a simple lifestyle. These religious values have certainly evolved over time; many of our modern marketing activities would not exist if these older values had persisted. Thrift, for instance, presumes that a person will save hard-earned wages and use these savings for purchases later on. Today, Americans take full advantage of the ample credit facilities that are available to them. The credit card is such a vital part of the American lifestyle that saving before buying seems archaic. Most Americans feel no guilt in driving a big SUV or generously heating a large house.

Christmas is one Christian tradition that remains an important event for many consumer goods industries in all Christian countries. Retailers have their largest sales around that time. However, Christmas is a good illustration of the substantial differences that still exist among even predominantly Christian societies. A large U.S.-based retailer of consumer electronics discovered these differences the hard way when it opened its first retail outlet in the Netherlands. The company planned the opening to coincide with the start of the Christmas selling season and bought advertising space accordingly for late November and December, as retailers do in the United States. The results proved less than satisfactory. Major gift giving in Holland takes place, not around December 25, Christmas Day, but on St. Nicholas Day, December 6. Therefore, the opening of the company’s retail operation was late and missed the major buying season.

From a marketing point of view, Christmas has increasingly become a global phenomenon. For many young Chinese, Christmas is not regarded as a religious holiday but simply represents “fun.” Fashionable bars charge up to $25 for entrance on Christmas Eve, and hotel restaurants charge $180 for a Christmas Eve function. The week around Christmas is the top grossing week for movie theaters in China, as young Chinese head out to theaters together instead of watching pirated DVDs at home. Santa Claus is increasing in popularity in the predominantly Sunni Muslim country of Turkey. In Istanbul shopping centers, children stand in line to sit on Santa’s lap and ask for gifts. Stores sell Santa suits and statues.

With billions of people celebrating Christmas and exchanging wishes of peace, perhaps we will see at least some of the inspired and faithful take personal steps which reduce the barbarities which humanity commits against itself in the many ongoing wars. Also, a time of remembrance of the difficult travels of Joseph and Mary, with Jesus soon to be born, might help us soften our stance against refugees and migrants in the world. Remember, we all – but for the mercy of God- could be the ones looking for succor and support.

Here is a holiday greeting from Prof. Czinkota and Prof. Skuba.

Merry Christmas!

Can We Really Delete The Past? A British Campaign Aims To Do Just That

What started as a simple idea over two years ago, has grown into a law that very well may be passed through the new Conservative leadership of Britain’s, Theresa May. The new Prime Minister of the UK has been insistent on passing “safeguards” that would allow children, once they turn 18 to delete any derogatory or incriminating former social media posts, photos, and even comments.

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Balance trade by boosting exports through government promotion

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import_tax_0The Trump administration is attempting to lower imports in order to rebalance trade after decades of U.S. neglect toward economic relationships around the world.  Rebalancing should not only be done by applying the stick of import reductions, but also by export promotion.

Exports make a firm’s markets grow and change its home nation’s currency value. When U.S. exports increase, the dollar typically goes up in value.Shrinking exports tend to weaken the dollar. Exports also shape public opinion of globalization and offer the opportunity for economies of scale.Higher production volume often means a lower cost of production.Since high exports also make imports cheaper, a firm may achieve lower costs and higher profits, both at home and abroad, through exports.

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Freedom and Globalization: Simultaneously Possible

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Source: http://xlcatlin.com/

Prof. Dr. Michael Czinkota and Dr. Valbona Zeneli

 

Globalization, trade and investment deserve our ”Thank You” for their achievements. Yes, currently, in Europe and the United States, popular discontent is forcefully expressed. An introvert trend has emerged, fed by nationalism, populism, xenophobia and anti-globalization rhetoric.

Globalization is not new; it has existed for centuries. What is different today is the speed of globalizing the world, made possible by new technologies, transportation networks, media, and international marketing. Many claim that never before in history has there been so much evidence about strong opposition to globalization. However, any comparison with the past is highly inaccurate. Only few records of resistance to globalization have been preserved for us today.

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Donald Trump- Economic Fright or Miracle? (in German)

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After a heated and arduous election campaign, it is clear that Donald Trump has won the race for the US presidency. The candidate, who is particularly striking in the election campaign with outrageous speeches and full-bodied announcements, promised to create 25 million jobs, invest massively in the infrastructure, and re-establish trade agreements. So what is coming to the US? Foreclosure and isolation, new tariffs and exploding state debts – How many expert prophesies are there? Will Trump lead to an economic catastrophe or a new miracle? And who are actually Trump’s economic policy consultants? Astrid Petermann discusses with Michael Czinkota, a professor at the Georgetown University in Washington and Valentin Hofstätter, analyst and US expert at Raiffeisen Research, in the Austrian economic magazine SALDO.

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