Advertisements are ubiquitous. When we read newspapers, watch television or surf websites on mobile phones, ads constantly attract our eyeballs. Advertisers employ various strategies to build brand identities, often tailoring messages relating to cultural and social values to fit the specific audience. Research demonstrated that consumers tend to devote attention to advertising that is congruous with their national culture.
Farhad Aliyev and Ralf Wagner of the University of Kassel in Germany and Taylan Urkmez of SolBridge International School of Business in South Korea conducted a study applying eye-tracking and survey methods to understand how luxury car advertisements attract Westerners and non-Westerners.
The authors acquired data from 54 Asians and 35 Europeans. The participants first participated in an eye-tracking experiment and then took part in a survey.
Results showed that Europeans pay more attention to the object (luxury cars) in the advertising compared to Asians. In contrast, Asians focus more on the background of the stimuli. For example, compared to the European participants, the Asian participants selected background items, such as roads, sky, plain, trees, and others more frequently. The results concur with the proposition that Westerners are usually considered as individualistic and pursue their own goals, while Asian cultures are more collectivistic and stress group signiﬁcance.
The results are helpful for practitioners, enabling them to design better-targeted advertising for luxury brands based on whether the audience is Asian or Western.
To read the full text of the study: https://bit.ly/2LE8zMM
Aliyev, F., Ürkmez, T., & Wagner, R. (2018). Luxury brands do not glitter equally for everyone. Journal of Brand Management, 25(4), 337-350.