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One of the businesses regarded as the largest producer, distributor, and marketer of non-alcoholic beverages globally is Coca-Cola. The business produces over 3000 items, including coffee, juices, tea, and energy drinks. Coca-Cola has been compelled to maintain its distinctiveness in the face of rising competition from producers of soft drinks by doing effective market analysis and, when practical, segmentation differentiation. Prior to product launches, the business gathers primary and secondary data that is essential for decision-making by analyzing client purchase patterns as well as competition strategies. The company's history goes back to 1886 when an Atlanta Pharmacist called Dr. John Pemberton started producing the syrup of Coca Cola for local sale (King, 1986). Later on, bottling began when he teamed up with Joseph B. Whitehead and Benjamin F. Thomas who sought the rights to sell the product in the US. With the introduction of the product in the international market, its demand rose to unimaginable levels. The company has therefore concentrated on the international market, tackling various challenges, particularly cultural ones, to guarantee survival.
Hofstede considered culture as the mind's collective programming which facilitates the categorization of people according to their differences (Metzger, 2014). The scholar considered culture as being made up of the visible and hidden layers. Values and morals that guide the society are considered as making up the invisible part of the culture. In this category are the rules and perceptions that guide the views on ethnicity and national identity that are not always overt but rather subjective in nature, guided by the wrong assumptions. From this theory, it becomes clear that global marketing cannot be a successful strategy if a company like coca cola does not understand the culture of the targeted group. Observations to guide the course of action ought to be guided by objective factors such as the people's communication, their social behavior, and their negotiation tactics. The success of the coca cola company has come out of the effective integration of Hofstede's practical ideas on culture.
Among the first nations where Coca Cola extended its services in the provision of products was India. The company faced some challenges such as convincing the people that the products being introduced into the market had no long-term negative effects on their health. Due to the secrecy of the ingredients, the people did not have faith in the genuineness of the product. At the initial stages of maximizing the profits in the region, the company had profound challenges that made it leave the market until 1993 when India enacted the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act. More specifically, Coca Cola came under criticism for what was considered as the producing low-quality products, exploitation of resources and the exploitation of the market closely associated with the price-quality trade-off (Benyon, 2014). These challenges were rampant in most of the countries where Coca Cola began selling its products. In India, the company was accused of abuses the water resources which were well maintained and kept free from forms of pollution. Because of the waste extracts the company received great criticism from the leaders of the nation where the market was integrated. Besides the pollution, countries that relied on Agriculture accused the company of creating artificial shortages.
Despite the cultural issues that are often intertwined with social challenges, Coca Cola has managed to maintain its good reputation all over the world. Through the analysis of the actions that were triggering conflicts in the given market regions, the company came up with sound policies to guarantee its survival and ensure that the needs of the customers and the communities are addressed. The company has also been playing an active role in the creating social amenities and taking part in the promotion of the local talents. In Africa, Coca Cola has been building and renovating football stadiums. Other companies have been engaged in sponsorship programs where the students are sent to study in the developed world for further studies. These strategies are meant to show the community that the company has the interests of the people at heart in order to accept the products and the services offered.
Coca Cola, among other great multinational companies particularly in the developed world, have been conducting researches and engaging the locals in the formulation of policies that guarantees its survival through the reduction of conflicts. Every year, these companies ensure that they conduct various studies on the right changes in policy to guarantee the survival in the market. Upcoming companies wishing to maximize their profits in the international market can borrow lessons from big firms like Coca Cola, Nescafe, Pepsi, and Toyota. An analysis of these companies reveals that they have a profound understanding of the religion, attitudes, values, language, education and the social organization of the community. Wrong interpretations of these aspects with result to varying impacts that might eventually force a company to exit the international market.
Benyon, J., & Dunkerley, D. (2014). Globalization: the reader. Routledge.
King, M. M. (1986). Dr. John S. Pemberton: originator of Coca-Cola.
Metzger, K. (2014). The Import of Culture? The Coca Cola Company in America and Australia.
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