Sunday, February 3, 2013

LIBERIA CULTURAL ANALYSIS








Executive summary
Over the period, culture has continued to play a crucial role in the development of marketing strategies in any location. Liberia has been recognized as one of the rich African countries with sufficient cultural heritage and the records have shown that their cultural practices have been inherited from the ancestral practices back in many years. Some of the cultural practices that have assisted the Liberian to establish a lasting relationship and growth in international marketing are the virtues of responsiveness and hospitality. The usage of English in communication as the national language has significantly enhanced communication leading to establishment of international marketing in the region. Another common language spoken in the country is Merico language that comprises the blend of American language and Liberian cultural language. The analysis of social institutions is also critical for understanding the nation. Liberia has witnessed the establishment of three major social institutions that are aimed at enhancing the preservation of social and cultural practices. the leading faction comprises 80% of the population and is composed of freed slaves, another group comprises of the Americo-Liberian and finally, the third group is composed of immigrants into the nation. . The country is strategically located in the midst of other nations speaking different languages like French and English. This aspect has significantly influenced the mode of establishment of international marketing because the country has multilingual recognition. In consideration of the religion and aesthetics of the Liberian people, it is critical to consider that majority of the population are immigrants from the slave trade. During the era of slave trade, the former occupants of the United States brought with them culture, tradition and religion from the United States. In this regard, about 40% of the population practices Christianity with mixed aspects of traditions and culture (Crown, 1999 67). With regard to the living conditions, the aspect of poor living conditions has adversely influenced the predominance of cultural practices and religious beliefs to a greater extent that international marketing has been rendered incompetent on the quest to establish economic and regional development. Finally, international marketing has significantly influenced development of the Liberian economy.


Introduction
Over the period, culture has continued to play a crucial role in the development of marketing strategies in any location. Cultural values are significant in the formation of attitude and behavior of specific people in a social set up. In this regard, the success of international marketing is largely influenced by the cultural practices available in host countries. Over the period, Liberia has continued to be on the fore front of international trade because of the establishment of various aspects of trade. Liberia has been recognized as one of the rich African countries with sufficient cultural heritage. Analysis of the Liberian records shows that their cultural practices have been inherited from the ancestral practices back in many years. Some of the cultural practices that have assisted the Liberian to establish a lasting relationship and growth in international marketing are the virtues of responsiveness. The cultural values of the region stipulate that visitors and new ideas should be highly regarded and treated with the best accord. International marketing has been on the rise in the recent past because of the identification of innovative channels of marketing the countries produce in the international market where there high competition and high rewards for quality products. Liberia has been on the fore front for the production of quality rubber and has been recognized as the world’s leading producer of the commodity. This capacity has opened up the country for international relations. Finally, the cultural practices and beliefs have significantly enhanced the conduction of international marketing and international trade.

Brief discussion of the country’s relevant history
Liberia is highly rich in cultural practices that have significant influence on the development of international marketing. Some cultural practices leading to the success of international marketing in Liberia is the issue of language factor. The usage of English in communication as the national language has significantly enhanced communication leading to establishment of international marketing in the region. Another common language spoken in the country is Merico language that comprises the blend of American language and Liberian cultural language (Hans Mühlbacher, 2006 23).  Historical records show that Liberians have continued to be friendly and accommodative since the ancestral periods. This aspect has largely contributed to the enhancement of success in the establishment of international marketing in the sense that new ideas are highly welcomed and visitors are always welcomed even without invitation. The republic of Liberia has continued to rely on the services and support of the external world for the enhancement of trade and development. Trade has integral contribution to the enhancement of the Liberian economy and it has significantly enhanced the creation of massive jobs leading to the development of the economy (Hollensen, 2007 13). The conduction of trade is an established culture in Liberia that has been passed from the ancestral links to the current generation. Liberians are liberal people who have great admiration for their culture and they have continued to preserve these cultures because they have significant contribution in the establishment of their behavior and prosperity.

Geographical setting
The country of Liberia is located in the rich West African regions where it enjoys the benefits of geographical location because it favors the production of rubber. In reality, the location of the country has significant impact on the establishment on the cultural foundations in the region. Analysis conducted on the western African region has shown that majority of the west African states enjoys a rich cultural heritage characterized by the warm hospitality and humility. Therefore, the people of Liberia also share this aspect with the general states of western Africa. Over the period, researchers have continued to extract evidence to prove the originality of West African people because of the perspective that they share many factors in common. The location of Liberia in the geographical West Africa is significant because it critically impacts on the development of international marketing. International marketing is extremely beneficial to the both parties involved in the trade because of the gains derived from the trade. The geographical location of Liberia has continued to contribute significantly to the development of trade and international marketing in the region (Isidore Okpewho, 2001 92). The country is strategically located in the midst of other nations speaking different languages like French and English. Therefore, this has significantly influenced the mode of establishment of international marketing because the country has multilingual recognition. Furthermore, the cultural aspects have benefited the integration of the western African countries into the region with rich cultures inherited from the past ancestral linkages. Studies conducted by international markerers have established that culture has strong relations with geographical establishment because some aspects of relations are dictated by the environment. The social set up of the western Africans are largely influenced by the environment (Kumar, 2000 45). The location of the country is also beneficial in the consideration of the slave trade era where indigenous local were captured for slavery. Location of the country around the ocean is detrimental because it reduces the responsiveness to the international market. This is based on the historical of slave trade where members were captured and sold to the international communities.

Social institutions in Liberia
The establishment of social institutions in a nation is extremely beneficial because they help in the enhancement of cultural and social practices. It is a common aspect to witness the existence of more than one social institution in a given state that is formed to preserve the cultural and social aspect of the nation. In the same regard, Liberia has witnessed the establishment of three major social institutions that are aimed at enhancing the preservation of social and cultural practices. The classification of the social institutions in Liberia was largely characterized by the significance of their formation that was inspired different aspects of prevailing circumstances. Therefore, the classification of social institutions in the republic of Liberia is based on factors that led to the division of the groups and the subsequent formation of radical groups. However, it is evident that the aim of establishing these groups is to aid in the preservation of cultural practices and aspects that have been borrowed from the ancestors. The issue of gender is another daunting social institution in the republic of Liberia. Social issues related to gender can be ascertained in the analysis of roles, behaviors, ethics and other community perceptions. This indigenous African state is characterized by strict gender rules that enhance spatiality between the sexes (Masaaki Kotabe, 2008 293). The institution of gender and social set up has significant influence on the formation of culture because the there are specific roles designated for the male or the female members of the society. The rigidity in accepting the task belongs to the opposite sex has been issue that transcended from the ancestral teachings and the locals strictly observe this rule. They claim that men must not perform the chores that belong to the women. This attribute of disparity has resulted in the establishment of rivalry between the men and women of the nation. In this aspect, Liberia is listed as one of the countries with significant gender disparity. Gender disparity in Liberia is characterized by high cases of gender inequality. Apart from the social institution of gender, other social institutions characterizing the republic of Liberia are listed as follows.

The largest faction of Liberian cultural practices preservation is composed of the citizens who were previously captured under slave trade regime but managed to return to their homeland. The cultural aspects of these people are strongly embedded together in the rural set up. Analysis shows that this group comprises the majority of the population that amount to a total of 80% (Moran, 2008 102). The marketing aspect represented by this faction of the Liberian population is limited because of the exposure and reduced level of development. It is extremely beneficial for the international marketers to establish the theme of their expansion and establishment in various regions. The cultural faction represented by this significant percentage of people influences the operation of trade in the region because of their disposable income. The international establishment of international marketing is highly dependent on the aspects of cultural establishment and recognition. To a greater extent, the responsive of international market and its commodities are ascertained by the development of social and cultural aspects. The aspects of culture dictate the amount of usage of international commodities. The aspect of international marketing in not accepted by this faction of the population because of the perceived suffering they experienced during the era of slave trade. However, international marketing can articulate the usage of diverse methods that can enable the locals to adopt the usage of these international commodities (Moran, 2008 94). Over the period, the world market has been established to provide services for the nations willing and able trade on the same platform. On the other hand, the culture exhibited by this faction of the Liberians represents preservation of cultural practices. The rural Liberian dwellers pose the ancestral practices and continue to perform the practices that aid in the betterment of their traditions. This faction of the population has not adopted the benefits of technology and innovation.

The second faction of the Liberian cultural set up is the Americo-Liberians that majorly reside in the urban area and composed of settlers. Notably, these settlers have their cultures that are significantly different from the cultures exhibited by the locals of Liberia. The analysis reveals that their culture is responsive and therefore, beneficial in promoting the advents of international marketing. The aspect of international marketing largely considers the aspect of language because it involves the transfer of information between different communities speaking different languages. This group of Liberians is more suited for the activity of international marketing because they are multilingual and can easily communicated with the origins from other locations (Olukoju, 2006 86). International marketing has been on the rise and the benefits are evident with various countries registering increase in the volume of trade.

The state of Liberia is also composed of diverse cultures from other nations. This aspect constitutes the third faction that is majorly composed of immigrants from other nations in the nearby territories and internationally. The presence of these people in the lands of Liberia has significant effects because they dilute the cultures of Liberia by introducing radically new cultures. One vital point is that this faction is as a result of international marketing that has resulted in the migration of people and communities into the region of Liberia. International marketing involves the transfer of people and information from a cross the global environment. Liberia has been the host of many nationals who have significantly influenced the conduction of business and enhancement of economic development (Sak Onkvisit, 2008 20). Culture has significant role in enhancing the development and the conduction of business activities. The cultural beliefs and practices have significant aspects in orienting international business with the home cultures thereby enhancing the boost of business performance. Over the period, the global regime has experienced increase in the performance of business that has led to the formation of world market. it is critical that global nations embrace the idea of international marketing to enhance economic growth and development of these nations. The growth of individual economies will significantly impact on the performance of world market.

Religion and Aesthetics
In consideration of the religion and aesthetics of the Liberian people, it is critical to consider that majority of the population are immigrants from the slave trade. During the era of slave trade, the former occupants of the United States brought with them culture, tradition and religion from the United States. In this regard, about 40% of the population practices Christianity with mixed aspects of traditions and culture. Christian denomination practices in the country include Lutheran, Baptist, Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic and African Methodist Episcopal. Significant number of the population (20%) practice Muslim religion (Masaaki Kotabe, 2008 17). Even though the country has imposed ant discriminatory rules against religion, sources from within the country has shown that there exists religious discrimination against the Muslims in Liberia. The cultural aspect of Liberia encourages Aesthetics where they venture in the production of artifacts and other valuables. This art is embodied in the cultural practices where it has continued to act as one of the determinants of sales for the massive population. The aesthetics in Liberia have been molded and shaped with the inspirations of the rich and cultural African practices. The cultural practices in the region have been extremely beneficial because the people of Liberia have resorted to the designing of aesthetics for the sole reason of preserving culture that has been passed from ancestral relations. In this regard, international marketing will significantly influence the operations of the country by opening up the region for international trade. International trade has the impact of enhancing the performance of local economy because it increases the benefits earned from the sale of surplus commodities.

Living conditions
Liberia is an emerging third economy with significant low economic performance. Over the period, the nation of Liberia has continued to suffer because of insecurity both at the national level and at the state institutions. The case of rising insecurity in the region can be evidenced by increasing cases violence and crime that occurs throughout the area. Reports have shown that foreigners provide the best target for the robbers and kidnappers. Because of the adversity in the development and economic performance, the people of Liberia live under adverse living conditions because majority of the population are poor and cannot afford descent education and basic needs. The aspect of poor living conditions has adversely influenced the predominance of cultural practices and religious beliefs to a greater extent that international marketing has been rendered incompetent on the quest to establish economic and regional development. In this regard, the poor living standard has adversely affected the enhancement of international marketing in the nation of Liberia.

Languages
As an African nation located on the western parts of the continent, the nation of Liberia largely speaks American English because they were colonized by America. Apart from English, there are also other major languages spoken Liberia that has enhanced transfer of ideas and information between the citizens. Apart from the local dialect, the people of Liberia have perfected the art of speaking in English and Americo-Liberia which is a language that blends English with the native Local language (Moran, 2008 72). The country is composed of 16 tribes that have significant dialect. Therefore, it is evident that the nation of Liberia has significant amount of dialects that are used in for communication.

Comments
Over the period, international marketing has led to the enhancement of economic growth in participating nations. The success of international marketing is largely dependent on the cultural practices and beliefs available in the targeted nation. In this regard, Liberia has continued to experience significant aspect international trade with the other nations in the world market because it has the capacity to trade in rubber. Reports about the nation has highlighted that the country has remarkable observation of cultural beliefs and social practices because they impact on their behaviors. The location of the country on the rich western African regions has also significantly contributed in the observation of culture because that reflects on the observation of culture. International marketing has largely enhanced the performance of the Liberian economy because it has opened up the region to engage in trading activities with the other nations at the global market.









References
Crown, J. R. (1999). Marketing in Liberia , 1-22.
Hans Mühlbacher, H. L. (2006). International Marketing: A Global Perspective. New York: CengageBrain.
Hollensen, S. (2007). Global Marketing: A Decision-Oriented Approach , 700.
Isidore Okpewho, C. B. (2001). The African diaspora: African origins and New World identities , 334.
Kumar, V. (2000). International marketing research , 430.
Masaaki Kotabe, K. H. (2008). Global Marketing Management. United Kingdom: John Wiley & Sons.
Moran, M. H. (2008). The Violence of Democracy. Liberia: , 200.
Olukoju, A. (2006). Culture And Customs of Liberia , 154.
Sak Onkvisit, J. J. (2008). Strategy and Theory . International Marketing: , 710.