People and the nations they are born into vary across the world, similarly so the traditions passed down become the cultural norms and values we see held in modern times. There are a number of ways a culture can vary from one another; these disparities can lead to different approaches when marketing goods and services to said citizens. Hofstede’s cultural compass has categorized five separate markers which help explain these variances.
Three stand out categories that cannot be overlooked when comparing Hofstede’s cultural insights between the United States of America and Mexico are the vast differences shown in power distance, individualism, and uncertainty avoidance. While these nations are close in proximity to each other and share more bordering territory with each other than any other country, they differ greatly when their cultures are cross examined. On the surface they have several differences in their cultural norms including their native languages their religious practices, even their preferred sports are vastly different than what we are accustomed to here in the United States.
While power distance does not serve as the category showcasing the largest disparity between Mexico and the United States it certainly plays a large part in how societies function and furthermore how products are marketed within them. The United States scores a moderate 40 in power distance while Mexico more than doubles that score coming in at an astounding 81, and we see this reflected in their societies. A high-power distance can be viewed as a more traditional approach to organizing society they tend to put more emphasis on name brands, and view designer products as status symbols.
Top managers make decisions with little to no input from their subordinates and heads of households; traditionally the father of the family, also is in charge of the most important choices. While these values hold strong in Mexico they are certainly fading in the United States with women taking on more leadership roles in both the world of business and the sanctity of their households. Although the marketing of products exists in every society the way in which products are advertised as well as what types of advertisements reach the consumer effectively vary significantly.
In cultures with high power distance acceptance the advertisers go after the heads of the households with the intention of providing benefits to the whole family. Similarly, in cultures exhibiting low power distance acceptance, products are still promoted with the promise of providing benefits to their consumers, however they aim to reach a much broader range of customers, in hopes to start a large discussion amongst them and ultimately reach a consensus on said product.