I spent a year interviewing senior communicators in 31 countries about best practices in communication in their countries and cultures for my new book Pitch, Tweet, or Engage on the Street: How to Practice Global Public Relations and Strategic Communication. The book breaks the world into 10 different cultural groups, as identified in the Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness (GLOBE) research program—a 10-year project, published in 2004, by more than 170 researchers studying 62 cultures. It explains the communication strategies, tactics, and messages that work best within each of them. Below are tips for communicating in each of the world’s 10 cultural clusters.
1. Use social influencers in China.
In “Confucian Asia”—countries which have been influenced by the tradition of Confucianism, such as China, Japan, and South Korea—best practices on social media differ significantly from other parts of the world. In the U.S., for example, much of the content that gets re-tweeted and goes on to “trend” on Twitter is generated by the traditional U.S. media, such as The New York Times and ESPN. By contrast, Chen Liang, account executive for Ruder Finn in Hong Kong, says that, in China, many people do not view the government-censored press as a reliable source of news. The Chinese people therefore turn to public figures such as actors, independent journalists, professors, and writers who have garnered reputations for sharing reliable information on social media. Getting these social influencers to evangelize for you can be a great strategy in China.
2. Segment your audiences in India and other South Asian countries.
The cultural cluster of South Asia, which includes Cambodia, Indonesia, India, Iran, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Thailand, is notable for its diversity....
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