Gift giving in the International business context

In Great Britain and the United States corporate gift giving is not a very popular 1custom; people can spend their entire working lives without ever receiving a corporate gift. However, gift giving is sometimes an integral part of the negotiation process when doing business 2_____ .It is important to learn about the 3_____ of gift giving before sending or taking a gift to an international client or business partner, or you may find that your gesture appears 4_____ .For example, in China a desk clock 5_____ bad luck or death. It is also interesting to note that the receiver never opens a gift in front of the giver as that would signify that the content was more important than the act of giving. Waiting for the person to open your gift would show that you were not 6_____ to Chinese culture. In France, don't give something with your company logo, as they find items like this impersonal and in bad taste. Giving knives in Italy, Russia or Argentina could lead to problems in establishing a deal as this signifies cutting off the relationship! Giving flowers is another possible 7_____ .In England, Australia and Canada, some people see white lilies as a symbol of death while in Germany, yellow and white chrysanthemums could be seen this way.

Section 6.  Marketing. Product and Corporate Advertising

Target Questions:

1. What is marketing?

2. Why marketing department is considered to be a king-pin of a company?

3. Do marketing operations cost much? What is the most costly operation?

4. What is advertising?

5. Do companies need to advertise?

6. What are the main functions of advertisements?

7. What alternatives to advertisements do you know?


Marketing includes all the businessactivities involved in getting goods from the producer to the consumer. The producer is responsible for the design and manufacture of goods. Early marketing techniques followed production and were responsible only for moving goods from the manufacturer to the point of final sale. Now, however, marketing is much more pervasive. In large corporations the marketing functions precede the manufacture of a product. They involve market research and product development, design, and testing.

Marketing concentrates primarily on the buyers, or consumers, determining their needs and desires, educating them with regard to the availability of products and to important product features, developing strategies to persuade them to buy, and, finally, enhancing their satisfaction with a purchase. Marketing management includes planning, organizing, directing, and controlling decision making regarding product lines, pricing, promotion, and servicing. In most of these areas marketing has complete control; in others, as in product-line development, its function is primarily advisory. In addition, the marketing department of a business firm is responsible for the physical distribution of the products, determining the channels of distribution that will be used and supervising the profitable flow of goods from the factory or warehouse.


Consumer marketing should be based on understanding consumer values, wants and needs. The fundamental principles for a marketer are:

¾ understand the customer (through research)

¾ understand the grouping (to which the customer or his business belongs)

¾ create a choice (a difference in price, concept or value that will distinguish your product)

¾ communicate that choice (through promotion and advertising)


There are four principal controllable factors that provide the most effective choice for the consumer – the Four P’s: product, price, place and promotion.

Place includes location of production and distribution. Now customer’s can see the company’s product in dealer’s showrooms, from catalogues, direct-mail coupons, telemarketing or through computer shopping services.

Promotion includes all forms of marketing communication: advertising, direct mail, customer service, sales, fairs.

The most controllable of these factors is the first ‘p’ – product(service). All products and services have what have been traditionally called ‘product life cycles’.

The stages of the product life cycles are: introduction, growth, maturity and decline.

The length of a product cycle depends upon the

¾ intensity of the competition

¾ extent to which the new product is an innovation, a modification of an existing product

¾ introductory timing of technologically superior products

¾ marketing techniques


Marketing operations are very expensive. They make up more than half of the customer’s dollar.


Exercise 1. Discuss:

1. What are some of the main benefits of political stability?

2. How would you describe the present economic situation of your country compared to 20 years ago?

3. Would you like to see a more equal income distribution in your country? Explain why or why not.


Exercise 2. Match the words (1-10) with their definitions (a-j)

1. market                               a. Guiding the long-run use of the firm's resources based on its existing and projected capabilities and on projected changes in the external environment.

2. market segmentation     b. The business philosophy that a company's effort should be adapted to the needs and wants of its customers.

3. marketing                         c. The process of dividing a total market into sub-groups of consumers who exhibit differing sensitivities to one or more marketing mix variables.

4. marketing concept         d. These systems create rather than simplify manipulated data, presenting data in a form useful to a variety of people within the organization.

5. marketing information   e. Total of all individuals or organizations

systems (MIS)                         that represent potential buyers.

6. marketing mix                  f. The planning, collection, and analysis of data relevant to marketing decision making, and the communication of the results of this analysis to management.

7. marketing research        g. The percentage of the total sales of a product in a particular area obtained by one company

8. marketing strategy          h. A specific group of people who have similar lifestyles, wants, or needs.

9. target market               i. The unique blend of product pricing, promotion, offerings, and distribution designed to meet the needs of a specific group of customers.

10. market share           j. The process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods, and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organizational objectives.


Exercise 3. Look at the words and phrases below. Define the odd one.


1. a) growing market                       c) expanding market

b) developing market                  d) declining market


2. a) swamp a market                     c) flood a market

b) corner a market                       d) saturate a market

3. a) opinion poll                                c) spot check

b) focus group                             d) survey


4. a) market sector                          c) market segment

b) market potential                      d) market niche


5. a) international market                c) domestic market

b) overseas market                     d) worldwide market


6. a) launch a product                     c) bring out a product

b) introduce a product                d) exhibit a product


7. a) sluggish market                      c) stable market

b) flat market                                d) volatile market


8. a) point of sale                            c) end user

b) retail outlet                               d) sales network


9. a) special offer                            c) discount

b) free sample                             d) slogan


10. a) intermediary                            c) wholesaler

b) distributor                                 d) exporter


Exercise 3.   Use a word from box A or B to complete the first or the second part of the collocations and compounds in the sentences below.


shopping behaviour
target design
consumer position
competitive mix
mission standardisation


1. The most important decisions for international marketing are probably those of product standardization and variety reduction.

2. In international marketing, it is necessary to meet individual national requirements, in particular where consumer goods are concerned.

3. Licensing is an option which may enable the marketer to improve profits while retaining market _______.

4. In order to secure a _______ advantage, companies will try to make their products and services stand out from their competitors'.

5. It is extremely important for marketers to understand the buying _______of existing and potential customers.

6. A _______ statement is a definition of the business which usually says something about customer needs to be served, customer groups targeted, and technologies used.

7. A good product _______ is one which satisfies the needs of the customer and makes a product eye-catching in the marketplace.

8. There are numerous large _______ malls in Britain, which offer the customer free parking and where all the major retail brands can be purchased under one roof.

9. The main elements of the marketing _______ are product, price, promotion, and place.

10. Marketers sometimes focus on particular segments of a given overall market. This process is known as '_______ marketing '.


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