The paper "Chief Culture Officer - Pepsi Company" is a good example of a marketing case study. The success of any brand within its domestic boundaries or internationally depends on the ability of the company to regard the consumer or customer as the determinant factor in all aspects pertaining to the brand. For instance, in the sector of beverages, the CEO should ascertain that the company has utilized proper procedures for developing soft drinks. Moreover, the packaging of the product should also consider the existing culture thereby necessitating the integration of the different cultural aspects to market the product in the various regions of the world.
As a way of guaranteeing the effective integration of the diverse cultural perspectives in the product design, manufacturing, packaging and distribution, a Chief Cultural Officer (CCO) are necessary. Based on Grant McCracken’ s book, Chief Culture Officer: Building a Living, Breathing Corporation, the essay describes, analyzes and evaluates the author’ s arguments pertaining to the essence of the CCO in an organization. The Chief Culture Officer As one of the introductory statements, McCracken acknowledges the poor performance of the American corporation in considering cultural matters despite the tremendous performance in HR, technology, finance and management.
McCracken heightens the fact that an inadequate understanding of culture results in a loss of opportunities on the part of the company. To prove his point, the author discusses two case studies involving the improper understanding of the consumer's culture and its impact on the success of the brand. The appointment of Doug Ivester as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Coca-Cola Enterprises in 1997 turned into a terrible mistake for the company since he offended several stakeholders soon after taking the position.
The stakeholders that felt the impact of his decisions include the bottlers, the king-makers, and even the board. One of the episodes that revealed that Ivester was not the right professional for the CEO position was his sluggish response towards the illness that the company’ s products caused to school children in Belgium. As a result, the company encountered a public firestorm that claimed its reputation across Europe thus impacting adversely on its sales in the region. The reinvention of the vending machine is the other episode that claimed the reputation of the company.
The secret of the machine was to raise prices for Coke’ s products during warm weather so as to increase the company’ s returns. Customers had a different perception of the new vending machine. They considered it as a bully because it caused them to incur more at a time when they desperately needed a cold refreshing coke like on a hot day. The public outcry pertaining to the machine in Belgium heightened the fact customer feelings regarding a product are more important than the feelings of the CEO.
The effect of the machine resulted in a loss of the billions of dollars that the company had spent in marketing the product in Europe. Ivester also made the wrong strategic decision when he decided to sell the company’ s products to happy fans during a sporting event without taking into account the cultural and social implications of the strategy. Hiking prices had negative consequences on both the winning and losing teams and their fans. For instance, the losing team and its fans would consider the price increments as a decision of the firm not to share in their loss.
On the other hand, the company would indicate that it did not intend to share the victory of the winning team and its fans by piling the additional costs on their heads despite the win. The failure of the CEO to utilize variable pricing as a marketing expenditure rather than a source of additional revenue was responsible for the failure of his tenure as the CEO of the company.
Canabal, M E 2002, ‘Decision making styles of young South Indian consumers: an exploratory study’, College Student Journal, vol. 26, no. 1, pp. 12-19.
Giavazzi, F, Petkov, I & Schiantarelli, F 2014, ‘Culture: Persistence and evolution (No. w20174)’, National Bureau of Economic Research.
Hofstede, G 2001, ‘Culture’s consequences: comparing values behaviors, institutions, and organizations across nations’, London: Sage.
Leek, S & Kun, D 2006, ‘Consumer confusion in the Chinese personal computer market’, Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 15, no. 3, pp. 184-193.
Leng, C Y, & Botelho, D 2010, ‘How does national culture impact on consumers’ decision-making styles? A cross-cultural study in Brazil, the United States and Japan’, BAR-Brazilian Administration Review, vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 260-275.
Leo, C, Bennet, R & Hartel, C 2005, ‘Cross-cultural differences in consumer decision-making styles’, Cross Cultural Management, vol. 12, no. 3, pp. 32-61.
McCracken, G 2010, ‘Chief Culture Officer: How to Create a Living, Breathing Corporation’.