Write a 11 pages paper on wedgwood. A key issue for the .Wedgwood company is the positioning strategy for the products. whether it should sustain the luxury image line or give in to modern design trends in order to broaden its target markets.
This paper critically analyzes the influence of cultural environmental changes on Wedgwood’s international marketing strategy in the UK, Japan, and the USA. In the end, the paper summarizes a range of proposed strategies for Wedgwood brands.
Traditionally the houseware and specialities market, including the tableware market, has been characterized by slow yet steady market growth (Morgan et al, 2005). The compound annual growth rate for the market between 2000 and 2004 is 5.1% (Datamonitor, 2005). The market performance, respectively Wedgwood’s sales have been driven by some strong consumer shopping preferences and spending patterns in several of the world’s developed economies (Datamonitor, 2005).
Internationally, Wedgwood operates in eastern (Japan) and western (Europe and USA) markets that have different cultural characteristics in terms of language, religion, and the context in communications, values and many other aspects. For a product category like tableware that is culture-dependent, the socio-cultural aspects in Japan, United Kingdom and USA exercise key influence on local demand. These factors determine local branding and positioning and should guide Wedgwood in developing local marketing and communications strategies.
The cultural elements that shape demand are grouped by Geert Hofstede according to five large dimensions – power distance, individualism and collectivism, masculinity and femininity, uncertainty avoidance, and long versus short term orientation (Wikipedia, Geert Hofstede, 2006). All the three markets are masculine cultures (Wikidedia, Geert Hofstede, 2006), which reflects in more assertive behaviour, and visible search for achievements and self-expression (Wikipedia, Masculine and Feminine Cultures, 2006). The US market is characterized to be the most individualistic culture, whereas Japan is characterized by Hofstede as a collectivistic culture of the so-called “community man” (Wikipedia, Collectivist and Individualist cultures, 2006). Still, social and economic changes in the Japanese society, “the end of guaranteed lifetime employment, […] and the loss of confidence in Government and financial institutions […]” have shifted the collectivistic behaviour towards greater expressed individuality and customization. . .