Title: Evaluation of foreign products in the context of South-North geographic cues

Authors: Igor Makienko; Alexander Jakubanecs

Addresses: College of Business, University of Nevada Reno, 310C Ansari Business Bldg, UNR/0028, 1664 N. Virginia St., Reno, Nevada 89557-0206, USA ' Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Bergen, Norway; Centre for Applied Research, Norwegian School of Economics (NHH), Helleveien 30, 5045 Bergen, Norway

Abstract: The quality perceptions of imported goods create advantages and disadvantages for exporting countries. This conceptual paper examines how economic stereotypes about South and North in addition to country-specific stereotypes affect consumers' product evaluations. Similar to country-specific stereotypes, stereotypes about different regions within one country (e.g., Hollywood) and different groups of countries (e.g., EU) also affect consumers' product evaluations. We go one step further and propose that South and North geographic cues may become strong factors when made salient during foreign product evaluations. Specifically, we propose that consumers' stereotypes about the North as a more industrialised region may favourably affect their evaluations of technical products. Alternatively, consumers' stereotypes about the South as a traditionally agricultural region may favourably affect their product evaluations of food products. In some situations, however, the proposed effect may be too weak to override the country-of-origin effect.

Keywords: country-of-origin effect; foreign product evaluation; region of origin; South-North geographic cues; economic development; stereotype; country production expertise; country-product match; international marketing strategies.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBEM.2020.111728

International Journal of Business and Emerging Markets, 2020 Vol.12 No.4, pp.405 - 421

Received: 10 Jul 2019
Accepted: 31 Dec 2019

Published online: 11 Dec 2020 *

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