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Deal proneness and national culture: evidence from the USA, Thailand and Kenya

Dheeraj Sharma (Indian Institute of Management Rohtak, Rohtak, India) (Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Ahmedabad, India)
Satyendra Singh (University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, Canada)

International Marketing Review

ISSN: 0265-1335

Article publication date: 7 August 2018

Issue publication date: 25 October 2018




Culture is one of the critical variables in explaining consumer behavior and consumer response to external stimuli. The purpose of this paper is to delineate the relationship between deal proneness and culture. Specifically, this paper examines the relationship between Hofstede’s cultural dimensions, namely, power distance, individualism/collectivism, masculinity/femininity and uncertainty avoidance, and deal proneness. Additionally, the role of store image as a moderator between culture and deal proneness is explored. Finally, the paper offers prescriptive and descriptive insights for marketers to consider cultural perspectives when promoting products internationally. A clear understanding of cultural influences on deal proneness will allow marketers to target specific customer segments more accurately.


The authors collected data from consumers in shopping malls in USA, Thailand, and Kenya. The authors analyzed the data using structural equation modeling.


The authors found that societies with a high femininity index are more likely to respond to deals than masculine societies. An inverse relationship between the Power Distance Index (PDI) and deal proneness may exist, suggesting that societies with a high PDI may be less deal prone. The authors found that individualism index is positively related to deal proneness, and thus societies with a low individualism index should be more deal prone. Finally, individuals in high uncertainty avoidance countries are expected to exhibit low deal prone tendencies.

Research limitations/implications

The study utilized a sample from cities. Consequently, future studies may attempt to validate the relationship posited in this study by utilizing non-urban data. Additionally, the authors look at stores in a mall. Thus, there is a possibility of interaction between mall image and store image. It may be useful to validate the findings of this study by using data from stand alone stores and also examine the interaction effect of mall image and store image on the deal proneness in a given culture.

Practical implications

This study suggests that appropriate store selection for offering deals can possibly augment the effectiveness of deal-based promotions. Specifically, choice of store can alter the context, and thus the perception of the value proposition could increase, which in turn is likely to increase the acceptance of deal-based promotion.


Although several researchers have also examined differences in consumer behavior across cultures yet it appears that there is no direct study that examines the effects of cultural differences on deal proneness using data from three countries (USA, Thailand, and Kenya) which are diverse on all dimensions of national culture. This paper examines the influence of national culture on individual’s propensity to exhibit deal proneness. Furthermore, the paper examines the role of store image on the relationship between national culture and deal proneness.



Sharma, D. and Singh, S. (2018), "Deal proneness and national culture: evidence from the USA, Thailand and Kenya", International Marketing Review, Vol. 35 No. 6, pp. 981-1008.



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