Cultural Effects on Consumer Behavior

Consumer behavior is largely dependent on cultural factors consisting of mutually shared operating procedures, unstated assumptions, tools, norms, values, standards for perceiving, believing, evaluating, and communicating.  Cultural factors vary by country but become increasingly complex when people immigrate to foreign countries that have different cultural dimensions. In these situations, people are subjected to a wide variety of cultural reference groups that ultimately affect their purchase behavior. In addition, reference groups may consist of familial groups or external peer groups with each group providing specific and often conflicting information that affects purchase and consumption behavior.  In response, marketers must develop marketing communication that addresses cultural and reference group factors from both a domestic and global perspective.  To this end, marketers use market segmentation and micromarketing to develop customer-centric marketing messages with the goal of providing precisely defined marketing messages that satisfy consumer’s need for personal information regarding products and services so that consumers should be adequately stimulated to purchase the product or service being advertised.

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