Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Iz - Notes re: Interviews I did.

The points below is basically what I found from my interviews. The reason behind the interviews I did in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Australia is because I need to get current information on what is actually happening in the advertising industry in the Asia Pacific Region at this moment. More in depth notes and insights will be available as I start transcribing the filmed interviews.

My interviewees has also been very generous by providing me materials such as campaigns they did and also their powerpoint presentations. I hope I will find some way I could use them in my DVD show reel and also my Exegesis.

Anyway here it is:

- That localization of advertising or marketing strategies depends on the type of product and service, for example food like KFC, may need considerations and changes to suit the taste of a particular culture. Localization is not really needed when it comes to technological products as what is sold is the product’s benefits.

- Today, advertising geared towards young people doesn’t really need to be as localized as before, as the young are considered homogenous group of people. With the Internet, the world is becoming smaller and very similar qualities are generally developed in a lot of ways in young people below the age of 20 from country to country.

- The most common solution in cross-cultural advertising and marketing strategies, and also the easiest is by focusing on the lowest common denominator of each culture. It is easier to cut thru different cultures using this way but not necessarily could be the most effective.

- Translation works are mostly done by copywriters. Some ad agencies employ translators from generic translating agency like Berlitz, some hire in-house translators, where the majority of them have no background/experience in the creative field whatsoever.

- There is no advertising or marketing strategies that went wrong, just strategies that went less effective. Successful ones are the ones that are received well, the ones that created the most awareness and volume in sales. This is how successful strategies are being measured.

- Businesses entering a new market should do more research. In the case of KFC in China, since the Chinese have strong family ties, they see eating out at a restaurant as an opportunity to spend quality time together therefore the KFC restaurants there are bigger and have more seating capacity so that the Chinese can seat and relax. Compare that to most Western countries where KFC operates, the restaurants are much smaller than their China counterparts because people just go in and out and don’t spend as much time like the Chinese.

- In a lot of ways, “Agency people” in advertising agencies assume they know everything or have a feel for a certain kind of market. Market research and focus groups are absolutely important to support the “gut” feeling of “agency people”. In a lot of cases, market research and researching within a network of multinational advertising agencies in different parts of the world is the key to successful and effective global campaigns.

- There is no translation/ interpretation service provided by a body that hires only translators with a knowledge/ background in the marketing/advertising field. There is a need but it is very niche and needs more definition. Questions: How and why it could help?

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