It’s no secret we live in a global economy. It’s up to you how you name it: sharing economy, access economy, or even a peer-to-peer economy. All the previous describe a rather new consumer behavior possible only thanks to access to technology. Digital communications as the channel, the collaborative economy is changing the way we eat, live, move, and meet people, bringing transparency and overall security to the acquisition of a product or service. Even more so during the global Covid-19 pandemic.
Nevertheless, the main ingredient that will determine the long-term success of a product or service in this context is culture. The business model is important, so is the idea, the seed capital, and the timing it hits the market. But culture is like looking in the mirror; there’s no escaping reality. In the end, after the initial turmoil, things will eventually settle, and culture will define the outcome. In comes communications as the conduit for sensemaking within different audiences in diverse continents.
If a company is able to relate and understand its group of stakeholders in the early stages, there’s a good chance that the company and its clients, shareholders and employees will reach, sooner than later, the final objective of a sharing economy endeavor: the co-creation of value. And from there on, the sky’s the limit. What started as “A” during launch day in a certain country, might very well end up as “B” or “C” years later, thanks to this notion of joint value construction.
And what started as “A” in another country in a whole new region during its early stages, might very well remain as “A” or maybe shift to “D” or “E.” The essence of the company should remain the same, but adjusting to the preferences of the local audience — its culture — is paramount. A very simple example is how fast food chains serve adapted meals, with local ingredients and names. Now that’s relating to culture.
Communications as the bridge
The communications strategy needs to establish the tone and style for each audience, but not before a thorough situational analysis takes place in order to understand the preferences, habits, and, yes, culture, of the target audience. MY JET PR specializes in public relations for private aviation companies on a global scale, advising clients on how to engage with its audience through tailored media appearances, from press releases to thought leadership pieces. We also have clients that use our services in every continent, who speak different languages and have various backgrounds.
Although the private jet industry is a language in itself, and people willing to travel by this means understand what they’re getting, companies in this sector have the challenge and responsibility to relate with their clients at a different level, connecting with their roots, habits and motivations, going back to the basics. The level of customization of the message is directly proportional to how good a company is communicating to its diverse stakeholders and, therefore, relating to each one’s culture.
It can be as simple as modifying the concept of “charter flights” in an advert that appears in a certain country to “executive aviation” in an ad for a luxury magazine printing in a different region. There’s research behind that subtle variation — an understanding of what relates to the audience in a multicultural context. This is something I believe other industries have lacked in the past when reaching out to new audiences, especially the retail, gastronomy, and hospitality sectors. What makes you great in your country won’t necessarily resonate in a completely different context.
Without moving away from the core values, each company needs to adapt to local reality and not the other way around. That’s the challenge of the sharing economy, which brings huge potential with its fast and scalable model but can also hit a brick wall if the proper analysis isn’t performed. Culture is strong, transparent and it’s been forming through ages. One good business model won’t change it.
Communication comes in as the bridge to managing multicultural audiences. Whether its social media, stakeholder mapping, focus groups or traditional public relations, every communication-based tool will guide the level of sensemaking, especially for those services or products testing new markets. The door must be open to receiving feedback, real and live comments (not those gathered in market research or a survey) on whether a firm’s introduction in a whole new region is going accordingly.
Culture is strong. Don’t fight it. Adapt while you can without losing your core values.
MY JET PR is specifically dedicated to working with private aviation companies from all around the globe, positioning them in top online luxury, lifestyle, and aviation outlets by delivering quality content to editors and publishers, with transparency and passion.