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Title: Marketing communications and bilingualism : the impact of bilingualism on consumers' response to marketing messages
Author: Jones, Karen
ISNI:       0000 0004 2730 2420
Awarding Body: Bangor University
Current Institution: Bangor University
Date of Award: 2012
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Marketing communication focuses on employing strategies that appeal to its target audience and messages must identify the target audience and communicate in ways that appeal to its needs and expectations to be effective (Palmer 2009). However, targeting consumers with marketing messages in English regardless of cultural heritage and native language continues (Puntoni et al. 2009). Whilst language policies influence the public sector to target Welsh consumers with bilingual messages, the private sector continue to convey predominately-English messages. In contrast, faced with the same challenge, all commercial businesses try to stand out from their competitors (Bhargava 2008). Further, the number of Welsh first language speakers living in Wales is on the increase (Welsh Language Board, 2003). Therefore, contemporary marketing communication calls for marketing messages that appeal to a wider Welsh bilingual market. This thesis investigates the impact bilingual marketing stimuli has on comprehension, attitudes, and resulting behaviour of Welsh consumers. A large scale, holistic research approach was utilised in the study, mutually supported by a deductive and inductive mixed method design to produce robust data. This strengthens any weakness in the methods, as one compensated for the other (Fulcher and Scott 2007), thus cancelling out any limitations (Milliken 2001). A non-probability sampling method was adopted that would positively identify the target audience fitting the language criteria. Choosing a non-parametric route to the method of analysis is in light of non- probability sampling in addition to limitations in sample size and unknown normality of distribution. The e-Prime software application suite creates all the computerised experiment designs. The quantitative data was analysed using the statistical package for social science (SPSS), whilst using qualitative data, the content was analysed and thematic techniques used to uncover themes. Contributing data interpretation drawn from small samples acts as a platform for designing the confirmatory survey aimed at strengthening validity and reliability. The findings draw on narratives and statistical significant correlations in bilingual qualities of consumers that focus on the assumption that Welsh products are associated with quality goods that are higher in price. A strong sense of passion and pride for the Welsh language's development emerges from the analysis that has the potential to offer a lucrative business growth opportunity for local businesses. However, the additional costs of producing bilingual marketing messages are unjustified whilst consumer comprehension gaps in the Welsh language exist. From the analysis and discussions, the development of two distinctive framework models will assist businesses in directing contemporary marketing communications at specifically targeted audiences based on language proficiency and its motivational appeal. In addition, having to attend to only one academic level of Welsh, this adds to the comprehension gap problem making it difficult for creating marketing communications that challenge the comprehension gap. Commercial competitive advantages are difficult to achieve when language level variations are restricted in their use to segment the market to beat the competition. Support for a variation of language levels for businesses to use that target consumer groups within each comprehension level offer businesses more scope to adopt cost effective strategies that offer competitive advantages. Future proposed research directions include use of language proficiency as a tool to segment the bilingual market and, in doing so, test the effectiveness of marketing messages designed to identify with each target market. Also, there is opportunity to explore the impact such marketing messages may have on those not specifically targeted (non- Welsh speakers) as well as the effects of their appeal on the tourist trade.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available