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The important role of meta-analysis in international research in marketing

by U Farley John, R Lehmann Donald
International Marketing Review ()


Considers the current thrust in marketing to create global products, brands and strategies but also to “act local” when appropriate. Deciding which elements have similar effects and which are significantly different conceptually requires meta-analysis of each of the elements. Reviews some applications of marketing meta-analysis with a focus on international research. The potential international impact of meta-analysis in view of current trends in information technology and the globalization of marketing is promising, especially when the focus is on variables such as culture, geography, and economic condition rather than country per se. A current major thrust in marketing has been the attempt to create global products, brands, and strategies. Resistence typically arises from local managers who argue that important differences exist which make their situation unique. The key to “think global, act local”, then, is to standardize those elements of a product strategy which can be standardized without significant harm (or, better yet, with efficiency benefits) and let the elements which really do have different effects in different countries or cultures vary. Deciding which elements have similar effects and which are significantly different conceptually requires meta-analysis of each of the elements. For example, the marginal impact of advertising dollar spending (advertising elasticity) or price (price elasticity) might be similar across all countries in the EU. If so, these elements of the plan could be set across Europe rather than locally, since differences in estimated elasticities might reflect noise rather than real differences and hence lead to non-optimal budgeting decisions. On the other hand, certain ad copy strategies (e.g. informational vs. image advertising) might differ significantly in their effectiveness across countries. Were this revealed in a meta-analysis, decisions could be made on a more local basis (e.g. countr... [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR] Copyright of International Marketing Review is the property of Emerald Group Publishing Limited and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

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