Large firms, e.g. those that can practice a Transnational Strategy, have adopted a global product strategy that can be described as a process of “standardizing wherever you can, and customizing where you must.” Yet, it is a mistake to assume that global product strategy simply implies offering the same product, using the same marketing and other approaches, worldwide.  Choose a focal industry that interests you (e.g., automobiles, banking, aviation, fast food, etc…) and use it as a point of reference in responding to the following:

(i)         Describe the evolution of that industry’s dominant product strategy. What are the factors that are driving more and more firms toward that strategy?  Please briefly describe these.  Which of these factors (two or three) do you feel are most important in terms of their potential to drive a firm, of your choosing, in that industry toward that dominant product strategy. Why?  Please elaborate your answer. 

(ii)        In developing global products, what strategy(s) should the firm follow, for maximal effectiveness?  How should they make strategic decisions regarding organization and the value chain. Please elaborate. 

(iii)       Please describe the circumstances under which it is appropriate (or even necessary) to customize products to buyer needs abroad.  What are the motivating factors for such a decision?

  • Global Marketing Mix

Global marketing is not a blind adherence to standardization of all marketing elements for its own sake, but a different, global approach to developing marketing strategy and programs that blends flexibility with uniformity. Global marketing comprises all the elements of the marketing mix – product, price, promotion/advertising, and distribution – conducted across the firms markets worldwide. As a result, firms will make decisions about the levels of standardization and of adaption they will engage in for both marketing decisions as well as country markets.

  • Explain how the firm’s global marketing strategy addresses goals of cost reduction, enhanced customer preference, improved program effectiveness, and increased competitive leverage.  Please explain why this is necessary.
  • How do firms address the need to achieve economies of scope and generally minimizing the costs of doing business globally? Indentify a focal firm in an industry of interest and describe the strategic approach this firm uses to achieve these goals
  • Ultimately the firm should seek to create and maintain a global brand name.  E.g., Coca-Cola, Sony, and BMW all have succeeded by having brand names that are recognized worldwide.  What are the advantages of having a global brand name? 
  • Building the Global Organization

It is incumbent on the firm to identify an organizational structure that will permit it to respond effectively to the challenges of markets around the world.  One of these challenges to address issues related to the pressures of global integration as well as those of local responsiveness.

  • How do global organizations implement key organizational decisions that affect the nature of global strategy, as well as the effectiveness with which this strategy is implemented? How do such decisions differ between global firms and multilocal firms?
  • Please describe organizational decisions could be used to further the globalization goals of a firm, of your choosing, in the industry that interests you most (e.g., software, banking, pharmaceuticals).
  • In terms of human resource management, the ideal policy provides a mix of different national backgrounds, represented in the management of each country’s business.  What are the benefits to the firm of relocating its managers to foreign locations within its global system from time to time?  What kind of a policy might the aspiring global firm devise in order to encourage managers and other employees to become “internationalized” through the development of a multinational career?

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