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Chapter 13: The Role of Psychic Distance in International Marketing Strategy Implementation
13 The role of psychic distance in international marketing strategy implementation Jody Evans INTRODUCTION The relationships between psychic distance, marketing strategy and organizational performance have been the subject of rich debate in the international marketing arena. Psychic distance in particular has generated a wide range of conflicting views. The empirical usefulness of the construct has been questioned in relation to foreign market selection (Stottinger and Schlegelmilch, 1998; Whitelock and Jobber, 2004), entry strategy (Brouthers, 1995; Ellis, 2008; Kogut and Singh, 1988), the success of standardized or adapted marketing strategies (Cavusgil and Zou, 1994; Evans and Bridson, 2005; Evans et al., 2008; Shoham, 1996) and organizational performance (Dikova, 2009; Evans and Mavondo, 2002; Li and Guisinger, 1991; O’Grady and Lane, 1996). The heart of the debate, however, has concentrated on the conceptualization and operationalization of the construct (Brewer, 2007; Child et al., 2009; Dow, 2000; Dow and Karunaratna, 2006; Evans and Mavondo, 2002; Prime, Obadia and Vida, 2009; Sousa and Bradley, 2006). Much of the literature has now embraced the notion that it is the perception of similarities and differences that forms the basis of psychic distance (Child et al., 2009; Evans et al., 2008; Prime et al., 2009; Sousa and Bradley, 2006). Yet extant literature has continued to question the range of factors that should be combined to determine psychic distance. Common psychic distance stimuli include macro-environmental factors such as national culture, economics, legislation, politics, language, education, industrial development and religion. Sousa and Bradley (2005; 2006), however, introduce individual-level factors...
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