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MBA5512 International Marketing

BZ3604 Global Marketing

Global Marketing Review Questions


  1. Global/International Marketing Management
  • Describe the confusion behind an “American car.” What is it? What should it be?
  • Discuss the differences between planning for domestic and planning for international activities. What are several potential problems a MNE is likely to encounter?
  • Discuss the control mechanisms a MNE has? How do these differ under centralization versus decentralization? Under what scenarios is centralization more effective? Decentralization?
  • Discuss ‘global strategy’, factors that affect it at the firm level, product level, and individual country level.
  • Why must companies think globally? How is marketing strategy linked to global strategy? What are some factors that affect global strategy for the firm? at the product level?
  • What are the benefits to a company of accepting and following the global market concept?
  • What is the self reference criterion (SRC)? How can marketers avoid its fallacy?  What are Singaporean's "famous" ethnocentrism?
  • Differentiate among domestic market extension orientation, multi-domestic market orientation, and global marketing orientation. Use the company in your Country Notebook as an illustrated example to describe how the orientation guides international operations.


  2. History and Geographic Environment in International Trade
  • List in order the Singapore’s top 3 trading partners and top 3 countries in terms of foreign investment.
  • List in order the China’s top 3 trading partners and top 3 countries in terms of foreign investment.
  • Why would a company go international or engage in international business opportunities? Provide 5 possible motives. Why is it important (to the company, to the Singapore) that they do so?
  • Describe Singapore trade via the Pacific Rim, Europe, and America. Which is larger? Which is growing faster? Which was historically the most important? Why.
  • Describe the trade deficit in terms of the service portion and the goods portion in Singapore. Why the differences? Why is the goods portion not greater? What are the major surplus sectors in the service sector? the goods sector? What are the major deficit sectors? Relate the trade deficit to the GDP?
  • What are the historical and geographical reasons that the United States has been a poor (proportionally to percentage of GDP) world trader? Why could this have been predicted by the Theory of Country Size? What forces within the last 15 years have caused the U.S. to reassert itself into world trade?
  • What are the historical and geographical reasons that Singapore has been an active (proportionally to percentage of GDP) world trader?  Discuss the Proactive versus Reactive exporter.
  • Need a company go overseas to engage in international business? How can this be so? Provide a set of suggestions for a company to do so.
  • Compare and contrast: Multinational Enterprise, Multinational Corporation, Multidomestic company, Transnational Corporation, and Global corporation.
  • GATT. What is it? What is the WTO? What was the historical reasons behind GATT? What was its effect upon world trade and tariffs? What was this the 8th round called? What was the hang-up for negotiations during the early 1990s? What were the primary and the two secondary areas for negotiations for the round? How was it finally resolved? What American industries are likely to be winners and losers as a result of GATT?
  • List and provide 5 specific country examples of non-tariff barriers. Describe how these act to deter trade. Why are non-tariff barriers the preferred barriers in the 90s. What can an international businessperson do to protect oneself against these barriers?
  • Who gains and who loses from international trade? Provide a specific example.
  • List and describe 3 reasons used to rationalize trade barriers. What are the effect upon importers, consumers, and producers of such barriers. Pre-World War II was tariffs or non-tariffs more of a barrier? Which is it today? Why?
  • Provide several arguments for government influence and provide an example of each.
  • Briefly discuss how the geographical influence of the Japanese islands and the historical background of the Japanese people could directly lead to the cultural attributes of superiority (uniqueness), collectivism, and hierarchy. What marketing cues should this give you?


  3. Cultural Environment and Business Customs
  • Define CULTURE, identify and explain 5 cultural characteristics. Provide a set of characteristics or parameters for it.
  • With the background of ISLAM and the Arabic culture, why would the Iranians, who have just completed an 8 year and multimillion casualty war with Iraq, proclaim openly their support for and wish to join with Iraq in battling the Infidels? What are the cultural reasons behind such a (Western view) hard to understand position? Why is it so difficult for predominantly Arabic countries to have secular governments?
  • Islam, Judaism, and Christianity all are derived from the same small area in the world. List 3 factors that all 3 religions have in common and 2 major differences. Why is it unlikely that an Arab secular state will exist in a stable form?
  • What does a country’s religious situation have to do with a firm’s marketing strategy? Discuss the marketing implications of various religious phenomena. Identify constraints in marketing to a traditional Muslim society.
  • Even the concept of numbers can mislead the international marketers. Provide three (3) examples of where numbers and their interpretations may differ between cultures.
  • Briefly indicate how time could differ culturally and discuss its potential marketing implications.
  • Provide examples of how language and its use or misuse could impact international marketing efforts?
  • Briefly describe 5 each American and Chinese cultural traits. Briefly describe the geographical and historical rationale for each culture having those traits.
  • What is the Maslow hierarchy of needs? Define and describe the five hierarchies. How do they differ by culture?
  • What are the differences between High Context and Low Context cultures? Provide 2 examples of cultures for each category. How does each group behave differently in terms of time, space, and legal parameters?
  • What is meant by the term ‘silent language?’ What are 3 of the various forms this can take? Why is it so important in international business?
  • Briefly indicate how time could differ culturally and discuss its potential marketing implications. What is monochronic? polychronic? What are the differences between the two? Provide 2 examples of cultures for each class. How does each group view the other group? Why is that so? What are the business implications of these differences?
  • Four of many possible cultural elements are time, space, color and numbers. Choose one. Provide several (3) examples of cross-cultural differences in the element chosen. Explain the possible impact on international business.
  • Provide examples of how language and its use or misuse could impact international marketing efforts? What can international businesspersons do to minimize language differences and hazards? Provide an example of how even the British and Americans can misunderstand each other.
  • What is culture shock? Why does it occur? What can an international businessperson do to minimize its effects? What are the 5 steps of the Acculturation curve?
  • Definitions: Culture, Stereotypes, Cultural Baggage, Assimilation, High Context/Low Context, cultural imperatives, adiaphora, cultural exclusives, cultural universals, culture shock, cultural filter, monochronic versus polychronic, ascribed/acquired group memberships, Fatalism, ethnocentrism, polycentrism, self reference criterion, explicit/implicit culture, Linear versus cyclical time, self reference criterion, translator, bicultural broker, acculturation curve, euphoria, reentry shock, honeymoon, fight/flight/filter/flex, going ‘native’, Lubrication/Subornation, Bribery, Anti-Boycott Law, Anti diversion clause, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), Arbitration, Export diversion, Diverter.


  4. Political and Legal Environment
  • What is Political risk? Briefly list and discuss the four dimensions of political risk. What type(s) of industries or companies are more susceptible to political risk? What can a company do to minimize Political risk before and after establishing a presence within a country?
  • Differentiate between confiscation, expropriation, nationalization, and domestication. Why is domestication preferred by countries over confiscation?
  • Explain the threefold political environment of international marketing? Discuss the kind of controls the host country has over the foreign firm?
  • How might a firm analyze its own political vulnerability within a country? Provide at least three examples. What can a firm do to manage relations with the host country?
  • Name 4 of the most common types of legal systems in the world. How are they different? How are they similar? Be thorough in your analysis.
  • Differentiate among the following political systems: collectivism, individualism, democracy and totalitarianism.  What are four major forms of totalitarianism? Which form is the most popular in Asian nations?
  • What are the potential problems in litigating in a foreign country? What is arbitration almost always preferred to litigation?
  • Describe in cultural and national terms why the United States has so many lawyers per capita and so many lawsuits while Japan has few of both.
  • What are Intellectual Property Rights. Name and provide 3 examples of IPR categories. Why are IPRs so important to industry? What are counterfeiting and piracy? Why are firms so concerned with these crimes? What can a firm do to protect its IPR?
  • What is counterfeiting? Piracy? What is the difference between counterfeiting and pirating? What are the potential damages to a company from either? What can a company do to protect itself? What is the extent of the damages they wrought in international markets? What are the steps a company can take to minimize counterfeiting and piracy of its own goods or IPR?
  • Define and differentiate between patents, copyrights and trademarks (brands) and counterfeiting and pirating
  • What is the Gray (parallel import) market? What is it? How does it evolve? What conditions must be present for it to exist? What recourses does a manufacturer have? What are the implications of it?
  • What is extraterritoriality and jurisdiction? How are these terms important to the international marketer? What advice would you give to one concerning these items?
  • What is export diversion? provide an example. How problematic is it? How can it harm a manufacturer? What can a manufacturer do to protect itself?
  • Definitions: Political risk, expropriation, confiscation, nationalization, domestication, exchange controls, inconvertibility, embargo, sanction, tariff, duty, subsidies, jawboning, buy local (national), boycott, risk assessment, price controls, import controls, export controls, ownership conditions, OPIC, FCIA, Quota, Tariff, Local Content, Super 301, Most Favored Nation status, Intellectual Property Rights, Patents, Copyrights, Trademarks, Counterfeiting, Pirating, Right of Priority, Paris Convention, Rule of National Treatment, transparency, Madrid Arrangement, AntiDumping, Jurisdiction, Extraterritoriality, Grey Market, Parallel Imports, Common Law, Code Law, Islamic Law, IMF, UNCITRAL, ISO/WIPO,


  5. International Marketing Research
  • Discuss how the infrastructure of a country (e.g. mail, phone, etc.) could negatively impact capability, accuracy, and reliability of Marketing Research surveys within that country?
  • Discuss those factors which could present problems in conducting reliable international marketing research when using either a phone survey or a mail survey (discuss one or both). Provide several reasons why conducting such a survey in another country might lead to biased and unreliable data? What can an international marketer do to minimize chances for poor data sampling or data collection?
  • Discuss the information sources available for international marketing research. What U.S. sources are available? Local sources? business sources?
  • How is international marketing research different from domestic? Why is it typically broader and more comprehensive? Provide three specific examples, their impacts, and what should a market researcher do to minimize data bias or inaccuracy?
  • Can domestic marketing research techniques be used in researching foreign markets? why or why not? what differences can you expect to encounter. be explicit.
  • Why is it often more difficult to get responses to marketing research in other countries than in the U.S.? What implications does this hold for international marketers?
  • Explain how the economic and commercial infrastructure in a country can affect the marketing research task there. What are the ‘data problems’ which exist in international marketing research?
  • Discuss the U.S. government as an information source for markets abroad. Name some of the business and trade associations that offer assistance and information for the international marketing researcher.
  • Compare and Contrast Primary versus Secondary Data. What are the problems in gathering each in foreign markets. Be explicit.
  • What are some of the problems created by language and the ability to comprehend in collecting primary data? How can a foreign market researcher overcome these difficulties?
  • What are the potential foreign problems with sampling?


  6. Multinational Organizations
  • NAFTA. What is it? Who are the three countries currently involved? Who are likely future members? Describe the NAFTA accord and what it means for the three countries? What were the concerns of Americans with regard to NAFTA?
  • Compare and Contrast Free Trade Area, Customs Union, Common Market, and Economic Union. Where would you place the following in terms of the above regional trading bloc status: NAFTA, European Community before 1992. European Union after 1992. European Union after Maastricht is fully implemented, ASEAN,  and APEC.
  • Identify the following trade groups. Where are they located? provide an example of a member country for each. Mercosur. Andean Group. CARICOM. CACM. NAFTA. ASEAN What is the European Union? What countries belong to it? How did it come about? What was the Europe 1992 agreement? What was the Maastricht agreement? Of the forms of economic integration, what is the EU now? What is the impact for an international business for Europe now and after the Maastricht accords are fully implemented?
  • Describe the levels of economic integration, provide a definition and example of each.
  • definitions: ECU or Euro, Maastraicht, GATT, Europe 1992, NAFTA, ASEAN, Free Trade Act, Customs Union, Common Market, VAT, OPEC, labor mobility, capital mobility, monetary union, economic union, Eurobrand, ERM, EFTA, Andean Group, MERCOSUR, ALADI, CACM, CARICOM, preferential trade agreement


  7. Economic Environment
  • What is Mercantilism? neo-mercantilism? What country held the mercantile philosophy during the eighteenth century? What country today?
  • Differentiate between relative, absolute, comparative, acquired, competitive and natural advantage.
  • Describe the terms of independence, interdependence, and dependence. How do these three concepts explain world trade patterns and countries’ trade policies?
  • What are the four determinants of global competitive advantage? Describe each and their relationship with each other (Porter's Diamond)
  • Discuss GDP, Purchasing Power Parity as concepts vis-a-vis the United States and Japan. Why are these numbers so different for each country? Why should this be so? Why is per capita income so misleading?
  • Based on Rostow's stages of economic development, which stage is China in? Why? Indicate how the identified stage could impact your entry strategy.
  • What is the international product life cycle theory? What are the four stages? Describe its importance in international business? What is the rationale behind it?
  • What is PLC ladder and queue? Which stage is China in? Which stage is Singapore in?  Based on the PLC ladder theory, what is Singapore's strategy to counter China's threat?
  • Discuss the stages of market development. At each stage what does a country tend to import and tend to export? What happens to agriculture as a country proceed through the development cycle? Why is that so? How does the International Product Life Cycle rationalize these stages?
  • Discuss the use of population size as an indicator of market potential. What is the significance of a nation’s population growth rate for the international marketer? Why should age distribution and country demographics interest an international marketer. Be explicit.
  • Discuss the Eastern European economies transformation to a market economy since 1990. Choose one country and describe its path, the problems encountered, where it is today, and how life has changed.
  • Definitions: Maquiladora, GNP (GDP), Per Capita Income, Dual Economies, Infrastructure, country analysis, purchasing power, privatization, inflation, balance of payments, capital account, trade account, central planning, Historically planned economies, hyperinflation, misery index, ‘real’ rates, BigMac Currencies, OECD, International Product Life Cycle, underground economies, subsistence economy, relative (comparative) advantage, absolute advantage, acquired (competitive) advantage, natural advantage, Mercantilism (Adversarial trade), theory of country size, factor proportions theory, international product life cycle. country similarity theory, infant-industry argument, terms of trade, import substitution. optimum tariff theory. non-tariff barriers. national treatment. specific duties. Ad Valorem duties. combined rates. countervailing duties, Factor Mobility, first mover advantage.


  8. Marketing/Globalization(Standardization)/Adaptation
  • Compare and contrast globalization versus adaptation. Provides the advantages and disadvantages of each as a global marketing strategy. Which do you believe is the proper way to go? Why? Defend your position.
  • What products are more prone to standardization? adaptation? why? what are the features that would make it so?
  • Describe Levitt’s arguments for Globalization. What are the advantages and disadvantages of it? Is it happening or not? Why or why not? Defend your response.
  • Discuss ‘global strategy’, factors that affect it at the firm level, product level, and individual country level.
  • Why must companies think globally? How is marketing strategy linked to global strategy? What are some factors that affect global strategy for the firm? at the product level?
  • Discuss the Globalization(Standardization) versus Adaptation debate. Briefly provide the arguments for and against each side. What do you believe? Justify your position.
  • In what ways might a product be adapted for global markets? List at least five different techniques and describe in detail each.
  • Discuss those factors which favor and work against global product uniformity. Under what scenarios would global product uniformity be the best strategy?
  • What does selling a standardized product in global markets imply? What are some ways a product might be adapted for global markets? What factors encourage global standardization? What factors encourage product adaptation?
  • Are consumer tastes converging around the world? Defend your answer. If so what are the implications of this trend for international marketing.
  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of marketing a world brand versus a set of local brands. Under what conditions would a world brand be appropriate?
  • Discuss how a product can be adapted both physically and culturally for foreign markets.
  • What is cultural grounding? How does it influence product adaptation? Which is more susceptible, industrial or consumer goods? Why? What can a marketer do to minimize its effects?
  • What are several critical entry questions that one should ask before engaging in the entry/selection process? why? Provide an example of each.
  • Describe the Market Entry Decision framework, the process, the steps, and the decision rationale. Be thorough. What environmental factors or variables should a company consider? Why? When in this decision process should the entry alternative vehicle be considered? Why at that point?
  • What are the pros and cons of licensing as a form of market entry? Franchising? Under what conditions should either be the optimum market entry technique?
  • What is the difference between direct and indirect exporting? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each. When would what types of companies use each particular mode?
  • Choose between Licensing, Franchising , Joint Ventures, and consortia. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the technique chosen. Provide reasons or situations under which this alternative would be more attractive than any others.
  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of a Joint Venture as an appropriate market entry vehicle. Under what circumstances would a Joint Venture be an optimum choice?
  • Describe, compare and contrast the following Market Alternative Dichotomies: Direct versus Indirect Exporting; Agent versus Distributor versus Direct Sales; Own Production versus other’s production.


  9. Product/Brand/Service
  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of marketing a world brand versus a set of local brands. Under what conditions would a world brand be appropriate?
  • What are some approaches to brand policy in international markets. Discuss this question in terms of the product/product line your group is responsible for.
  • What are the considerations involved in establishing a warranty policy for international markets? Discuss the pros and cons , opportunities and problems associated with establishing worldwide services.
  • What is the International Product Life Cycle? What are its implications? How does this concept help screen foreign markets for possible market entry?
  • Discuss how a product can be adapted both physically and culturally for foreign markets.
  • What is cultural grounding? How does it influence product adaptation? Which is more susceptible, industrial or consumer goods? Why? What can a marketer do to minimize its effects?
  • What are some of the distinguishing characteristics of services? Explain how these charact eristics can make it more difficult to sell services overseas.
  • Why and how do governments intervene in services? How is GATT attempting to create freer trade in services?
  • Definitions: Keiretsu, Sogo Shosha, ISO 9000, JIT, MRP, International Product Life Cycle,Screwdriver assembly plants, Global sourcing, TQM, Synchronous manufacturing.


  10. Channels of Distribution, Exporting, and Logistics
  • Discuss the factors involved in selecting the right channel as well as the correct individual intermediary in an international marketing decision.
  • What sources should a firm use in selecting and investigating a distributor? What are the potential dangers in terminating a foreign distributor?
  • Discuss differences between foreign and domestic wholesaling and retailing practices. How can these differences affect a company’s strategy and marketing mix?
  • How do the functions of domestic middlemen differ from their foreign counterparts? To what extent and in what ways? Provide example.
  • What are some of the international differences in wholesaling? Retailing? Be explicit.
  • Many markets have relatively large numbers of retailers and wholesalers. How does this impact the marketing distribution strategy for the international marketer? how does this constrain activities?
  • What will be the impact of 1992 on retailing in Europe? Of NAFTA to North America? What are the marketing opportunities and threats from each?
  • Discuss Japanese channels of distribution, their problems and how to overcome them.
  • Why can one suppose Japanese channels to be the epitome of blocked channels?
  • Why would small or new to export companies often use export management companies, freight forwarders, or trading companies? What are the advantages and disadvantages to each approach.
  • What is a Letter of Credit? Detail how a company would benefit from using one. Provide an explicit example of a LC. What are the various types of LC and how do they differ?
  • What are the stages of export development? Provide an example of each.
  • Differentiate between internationalism, isolationist, and multilaterism. Provide an example and proponent of each.
  • Discuss exporting activity versus company size. What is the relationship? Why is that so? Must it necessarily be? What can be done?
  • Identify, define, and discuss four potential pitfalls of exporting as identified by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
  • Discuss 4 ways one can export without exporting, that is exporting in one’s own backyard, among US firms?
  • Why would a country use countertrade tactics (what type of countries)? Which is the most commonly used form of countertrade? What type of intermediaries predominate in countertrade transactions? What type of goods are typically used in countertrade?
  • What are international trading companies? Sogo shosha? Why do they often offer the best entry to some markets? Why are predominantly Japanese and not American?
  • What is a Letter of Credit? Describe briefly how it works. Why is it the payment of choice for so many transactions? What is its importance to an international marketer?
  • Definitions: Confirmed LC, Export Declaration forms, Export License, irrevocable LC, Letter of Credit Revocable LC, sight draft, Certificate of Origin, Bill of Lading, Open Account, Time draft, CIF FOB, Cash against document, Clean draft, Collection, Agent, broker, buying office, contract management co-operative exporter, co-production, distributor, Export Management Company (EMC), Export Trading Company (ETC), Franchising, Freight Forwarders, jobber,J oint Venture, Licensing, management contract, Piggyback, reverse franchising, strategic alliances, turnkey operations, Webb-Pomerane associations, consortium, Entry screen.


  11. Promotion, Advertising, and Personal Selling
  • Discuss governmental controls and agency/media availability as constraints on international advertising.
  • What are the factors encouraging standardized international advertising? What are the factors encouraging localized advertising? Under what conditions would either strategy be optimum.
  • What are the arguments for and against centralization of advertising decision making in the international firm?
  • Discuss some of the problems confronting an international advertiser?
  • Review advertising regulations. How would it impact your advertising strategy overseas?
  • What special media problems confront the international advertiser? Discuss in terms of availability, cost, and coverage.
  • Discuss differences between newspapers, magazines, and cinema in the domestic market versus that seen overseas. How would that impact advertising and advertising strategy? Be explicit. Provide examples where applicable.
  • What are trade shows/trade fairs? How might a firm use international trade fairs? How do trade fairs differ internationally than domestically? What must a firm do different to best utilize this medium?
  • Discuss the personal selling function in international marketing mix. What are the advantages and disadvantages. What are the problems.
  • Discuss the special problems involved in Personal selling abroad, either as an expatriate, direct from the home office, or a local national or third party national.
  • Why does personal selling often play a relatively larger role in foreign markets? Why is personal selling largely done within national boundaries?
  • When should an expatriate be used in selling abroad versus direct from home office versus a local national? Be explicit. Provide examples.
  • How can legal factors influence sales force management abroad?
  • How might a firm use international trade fairs? What are the advantages and disadvantages of using a trade fair? What other alternatives are available to the international marketer?
  • Discuss promotion differences in foreign markets versus that seen domestically? How would such impact an international marketer? What are some regulatory differences that would impact promotional strategy?
  • Differentiate between host country nationals, parent country nationals, and third country nationals. Provide advantages and disadvantages for using each to staff an international sales office.
  • What is culture shock? What causes the phenomena? What is an expatriate? How does it impact expatriates? What are its symptoms? What can one do to minimize its effects?
  • Definitions: Expatriates, fight, filter, flex, flight, host country nationals, third country nationals,culture shock, reverse culture shock, parent country nationals, Honeymoon or euphoria, Cultural Grounding, Cultural Synergy.


  12. Pricing and Negotiation
  • What is Price Escalation? How does it occur? What are some strategic options available to deal with the problem?
  • What are some of the major factors affecting international pricing? How are prices influenced in the global market?
  • what are the different risks that a firm marketing its products internationally faces because of exchange rate fluctuations? How might it cope with these risks?
  • What is transfer pricing? Why is it a consideration in international pricing? What are the four options available to a firm in transfer pricing?
  • How can the level of inflation affect the setting of prices? What should a firm do to protect itself? How should a firm cope with governmental price controls?
  • Why should export prices be higher than domestic prices? What are the marketing implications of export price escalation? What should a company do to protect itself against this factor?
  • How do exchange rates affect international pricing? Why might a firm with an appreciating currency not raise its export prices? What are the implications of fluctuations in exchange rates for an international marketer? What might a firm do to protect itself?
  • What is transfer pricing? What are the four techniques of calculating transfer pricing? Why do governments concern themselves with transfer pricing? Which is the preferred technique desired by governments. What are the dangers inherent in transfer pricing?
  • What is leasing? How does international leasing form part of the international pricing decision? What is Price Escalation? How does it occur? What are the effects on an international businessperson? What are some strategic options available to deal with the problem?
  • What are some of the major factors affecting international pricing? How are prices influenced in the global market?
  • What are the different risks that a firm marketing its products internationally faces because of exchange rate fluctuations? How might it cope with these risks?
  • Why would a multinational company lease goods? Under what conditions? Why would a multinational company become lessee? Under what conditions.
  • What are grey markets? How are they created? Who is most harmed by the grey market? Why? What can a manufacturer do to minimize grey market activities?
  • Describe the importance of Cross Cultural Negotiations to International Marketing. How should one pursue CCN if one is to be internationally successful? Be explicit.
  • Definitions: grey markets, price escalation, transfer price, Arms Length pricing, Leasing, Leasee, Foreign Trade Zones, Free Trade Zones, dual market pricing, Eurobonds
    Eurocurrency, Euroequity, backtranslate, bi(cultural) broker.



This Homepage is maintained and updated by Dr. Edwin Tang of  the National University of Singapore.
Last updated on September 7, 2002.  Copyright©2002, All rights reserved.