Multicultural markets and acculturation: implications for service firms

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Poulis, Konstantinos ; Yamin, Mo ; Poulis, Efthimios (2013)
  • Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1108/JSM-02-2012-0041
  • Subject: Marketing | Multicultural marketing | Ethnic marketing | /dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1400/1406 | Acculturation

Purpose: The purpose is to construct an analytical framework that encapsulates implications for the marketing offering of service firms as a result of observed intra-national ethnic diversity in these firms' markets of operation. Design/methodology/approach: This is a conceptual approach which promotes the idea that acculturation matters for service firms operating in multicultural markets and adopts relevant propositions related to service firms' strategy in such markets. Findings: Integrating fragmented insights from consumer behaviour and multicultural marketing, the study suggests that the various interactions and contacts between ethnic groups in a multicultural country can generate acculturation outcomes that lend themselves to novel avenues for empirical research. These avenues move beyond a research focus on the presence of ethnic groups as stand-alone entities of intra-ethnic uniformity. Practical implications: Firms with a broader market horizon in a multicultural market can employ acculturation in their marketing strategy since an exclusive focus on ethnicity as a basis of segmenting the market reveals shortcomings. Otherwise, a myopic approach that ignores cross-ethnic interactions may lead to bypassing opportunities for more considerate market responses by a service firm. Originality/value: To the best of the authors' knowledge, this is the only acculturation study in a services context that offers an analytical framework and propositions that can be used as a guide for multicultural, services marketing researchers and practitioners that see the market in a holistic fashion. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
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