Going glocal

Yes, you read correctly. I am talking about GOING GLOCAL. Another new expression you say. In fact you are not that wrong, however the world is not standing still but developing further.

It has become obvious that with globalization running high, the masses are searching for differentiation, as with global trends everything appears to be done the same way everywhere. This is as true for the increasing trend for regional markets ignoring national boundaries as for the trend for individualism of consumption on a personal level.

For that reason let me tell you a story about something that happened to me during a business trip to Hong Kong some years ago, and which in my opinion properly illustrates my perception of GOING GLOCAL.

After quite a busy day we went with some business partners to have dinner at a local restaurant in Hong Kong. Once we had agreed on the menu, the waiter asked us what we would like to drink. The British partner asked straight away for a beer, so we asked what beers were on offer. The waiter replied Tsing Tao, Heineken, Carlsberg and Hong Kong beer, and proudly recommended the last one. Being curious and open to try something totally new we ordered Hong Kong Beer.

To our surprise the waiter came back with 4 bottles of San Miguel, which led to some laughter. The waiter didn´t share the joke and asked us what was so funny. We explained that he had brought us a Spanish beer instead of a Hong Kong beer, but his reaction was to get somewhat annoyed proclaiming that this was not a Spanish beer but a Hong KONG beer pointing furiously to the text “Hong Kong Beer” on the back of the bottle in small letters. Now this made me really curious and I asked the Spanish partner to comment on the taste of the beer. With a big smile, he added straight away the taste was nothing like San Miguel.

But apparently the different taste did not reduce the success of Hong Kong beer. On the contrary the adaptation to local taste helped quite a lot. One has to simply recognize and applaud the marketing strategy as they had understood what GOING GLOCAL meant: the building up of a global brand taking into account the local circumstances. To convince the Chinese that San Miguel is Hong Kong Beer deserves my highest respect.

When I talk about GOING GLOCAL I mean that in order to build up a global brand you need to consider at the same time the local conditions and settings. From this point of view export meant to me up until now the sale of goods or services over national boundaries, whereas GOING GLOCAL means sales to different local markets considering the local conditions.

4 Responses to Going glocal

  1. Hola Sr. Ambrock, una buena amiga mía me ha enviado el link a este Blog. Me parece muy interesante y me encantará seguirle, sobre todo en alemán, idioma que estudio y así practico con temas de actualidad.
    Le invito a leer nuestro blog “El Blog de Estudi Jurídic” (http://estudijuridic.wordpress.com), donde escribimos sobre temas jurídicos de interés para las empresas, de forma amena y distendida.

  2. Hi Marc,

    I just thought you might like to know that I have received this notification to follow your blog at least two days running. It doesn’t bother me, but I know from experience that linkedIn and Facebook can get a little bit “carried away”. Regards Andrew

  3. El problema de la glocalización viene cuando un español, por ejemplo, quiere tomarse una San Miguel “de las de siempre”, aun estando en Hong Kong… la solución podría pasar por la “mcdonalización”, es decir, ofrecer siempre la misma bigmac pero, además, complementar la oferta con productos locales, para los que quieran probar sabores distintos. Why not?

  4. Hola Marc, una historia fantástica, fresca y alleccionadora.
    Cuando se va a fuera, hay que olvidarse de sus prejuicios y opiniones preconcebidas para adaptarse a la mentalidad del Mercado dónde se va…y hasta a sus sabores!
    Lo mismo le recomendamos a nuestros clientes de fuera cuando vienen a nuestro país para implantarse y construir una fabríca, un centro logístico o unas oficinas. El éxito esta en el ompromiso sostenido.

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