International Advertising is the promotion of goods, services, companies and ideas, usually in more than one country or continent. It is conceived as a process of non personal communication through the dissemination of a commercial message with promoting purposes across international borders, using broadcast, print, and/or interactive media.
This communication process takes place in multiple cultures and differ in terms of values, ways of communicating, and consumption patterns. It is also a business activity which involves advertisers and advertising agencies that create ads and buy media. The sum of these activies constitutes an important industry that is growing worldwide.
International advertising involves recognising that people all over the world have different needs as they belong to different cultural backgrounds. While many products have a global target audience, it is also necessary to understand the regional differences when promoting a particular kind of brand. The potential market size, type of competition, price, promotional differences, product differences as well as barriers to trade have to be analysed in order to advertise effectively in different countries.
THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION PROCESS
First of all, the advertiser determines the appropriate message for the target audience.
Next, the message is encoded into words and images and then translated into the language of target market. It is transmitted through a channel of media channels to the audience who then decodes and reacts to the message.
Cultural barriers could be responsible for a non-effective transmission of the message at each stage in the process, resulting in miscommunication.
INTERNATIONAL ADVERTISING OBJECTIVES
It is clear that the main purpose of advertising is to sell something. Let’s have a look at some general aims of international advertising:
1. To introduce a new product or service by creating interest for it among the potential customers.
2. To generate demand for the product and services and capture the market.
3. To build company prestige and Brand Reputation.
4. To support the activity of salesmen.
5. To enter a new market or attract a new group of customers.
6. To fight competition in the market and to increase the sales.
THE ADVERTISING COMMUNICATION SYSTEM
Advertising communication always involves a perception process with four elements: the source, a message, a communication channel, and a receiver.
The receiver can sometimes become a source of information by talking to family, friends or associates. This process is called word-of-mouth communication.
What are the effects that an advertising message can have upon the receiver?
• Create awareness
• Convey information about attributes and benefits
• Develop or change an image or personality
• Associate a brand with feelings and emotions
• Influence individual or group behavior
EFFECTIVENESS OF ADVERTISING ON INTERNATIONAL MARKETS AS A BUSINESS PRACTICE
International advertising can also be conceived as a business activity through which a brand attempts to inform target audiences in different countries about itself and its product or services in general. In some cases the advertising message relates to the brand, i.e. its corporate image. In other cases, the message relates to a specific product or service marketed by the brand.
Advertising research is the mean to determine the success of an ad in any country or region. It is fundamental to identify which elements and/or moments of an ad that contribute to its success. Once we know what works in an ad, that idea or ideas can be imported by any other market.
MEASURING ADVERTISING EFFECTIVENESS
We can check the effectiveness of your advertising programs regularly by using one or more of the following tests:
• Check sales results whenever you place an ad for the first time.
• Offer a product at slightly different prices in different magazines or online medias. This has the added benefit of showing whether consumers will buy your product at a higher price.
• Advertise an item in one ad only. Count the calls, sales or special requests for that item. If you get calls, you’ll know the ad is working.
• Stop running an ad after you have regularly run it. See if dropping the ad affects sales.
These are just some examples of testing how your advertising and marketing program is working. Be aware, however, that you can’t expect immediate results from an ad, especially with small ads. In fact, international advertising is a long-term process with results visible through the time.
Advertising Planning and Marketing Planning
The advertising manager needs to know the major areas of interest when realising an ad:
• Objective And Target Selection,
• Message Strategy and Tactics,
• Media Strategy and Tactics,
• Consumer and Market Analysis.
A situation analysis often begins by looking at the market for the product or service being advertised: the size of the market, its growth rate, seasonality, geographical distribution and trends.
Competition is another fundamental factor that has to be considered in all phases of the advertising planning and decision-making process. It also works as an internal motivator for the advertising firm. Situation analysis should also include an analysis of what share of a market is possible for the brand production.
All these factors shall give the firm a complete overview of the potential market.
The Advertising planning takes place in the context of an overall marketing plan which includes planning, implementation, and control functions for the decision-making unit or product line. The marketing plan must be extensively effective for any firm’s success. It will include objectives and strategies and tactics to reach those objectives. To be effective, the market plan has to include properly defined market segments.