Knowledge of consumers’ perception of foreign food products can be a key element for successful international marketing strategies, as operating on a regional or global level requires deep knowledge about international markets. Purchase decisions for most products are strongly linked to a person’s attitude towards these products, which are determined by beliefs and meanings associated with the product. In this context, the purpose of this paper is to analyze and compare the perception of Bavarian food products in an international context.
The qualitative technique of concept mapping has been used to uncover and visualise consumers’ semantic networks regarding Bavarian food products. Two European countries – Bulgaria and Romania – as well as two Asian ones – China and South Korea – are exemplary selected for this study.
The results clearly show that the two frequently mentioned associations across all four countries are the same while the other associations which were enumerated show a greater heterogeneity. Furthermore the study provides empirical evidence that the associations regarding Bavarian food products of the European countries are more similar to each other than the Asian ones. South Koreans have more indirect than direct associations with Bavarian food products and Chinese semantic networks regarding Bavarian food products are the least complex. These findings are underpinned by network analysis.
This study adds to the existing literature on country image by exploring international consumer’s cognitive networks regarding Bavarian food products by means of concept mapping.
The authors thank the Bavarian State Ministry for Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry for support of this research. Statements in this paper do not necessarily present the opinion of the Ministry.
Seitz, C.C. and Roosen, J. (2015), "An empirical analysis of international consumers’ associations with Bavarian food products by means of concept mapping", British Food Journal, Vol. 117 No. 3, pp. 987-1006. https://doi.org/10.1108/BFJ-10-2013-0307
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