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					International PR
Chapter 19

What is International PR?
Planned and organized effort of a company, institution or government to establish mutually beneficial relations with the publics of other nations  American techniques most widely used in world today

– Used in most countries, especially in large urban areas and industry

New Age of Global Marketing


For decades, hundreds of US corporations have been operating globally and using marketing, PR and advertising to help build relationships and understand culture. 1990s - tremendous growth of International PR practices by U.S. companies because of:
Technology advances 24-hour financial markets Lowering of trade barriers Growth of sophisticated foreign competition in traditionally American markets – Shrinking cultural differences – – – –

New Age of Global Marketing

1/3 of all U.S. corporate profits are generated through international business
– For Coca-Cola, 80% of sales profit from international markets


Common for 15 to 20 percent of some U.S. company’s stock to be held abroad

New Age of Global Marketing

15 largest PR organizations generate between 30-40 percent of their fees from abroad
– Technology makes it easy – Train their teams to approach PR in a uniform way, no matter what country – Employees must think globally

Problems w/ Global PR

Language and Cultural differences
– Americans & Europeans viewed as direct, opinionated, individualized, get to the point styles – Many cultures view harmony of the group, not individuals, and not direct in their communication


Watch your words in other countries
– – – – Rubber means eraser in the UK Calzone in spain means underwear “Got Milk” means “are you lactating” in Spain Okay sign in US is obscene in many other countries

Cultural differences
In US, white signifies purity; in Asia it is the color of death  In China, tables at a banquet are never numbered - always named  German and Swiss thinks it’s uncouth to refer to a person by a first name in public  In Korea, when filling your own glass, you must also fill your neighbor’s  In Thailand, never pat a child on the head because the head is sacred  In Asia, it’s offensive to show the soles of your feet  Gift giving is common and expected in Asian countries especially for the media

World Citizen Guide
Read a map  Dress up  Talk small and no slang  Slow down  Listen as much as you talk  Speak lower and slower  Religious/political restraint  Learn some words in other language

Representing Foreign Corps. In the US

Many PR firms hired to advance image of foreign corporations in order to:
– – – – To hold off protectionist threats to their company Defeat legislation affecting their company Support expansion on their market in the U.S. Provide ongoing information on political, sociological, commercial interests to company leaders – Crisis communication

Representing U.S. Corporations in other Nations
PR as an occupation has achieved highest development in U.S., Canada, Western Europe and parts of Asia  Best suited to explain benefits of globalization  PR in China is fastest growing, w/ approximately 1200 firms as of 2000.

– Information technology is reason for PR growth in China

U.S. Information Efforts

Public diplomacy - open communication w/ other
countries so they’ll understand our policies, etc. – USIA (US Information Agency)
 Created in 1953 by Eisenhower to shape America’s image abroad. PAOs placed in every American Embassy  Played big part of Cold War
– Budget of $900 million – 12,000 employees

 Agency abolished in 1999
– Staff went to U.S. Department of State

Other U.S. Information Efforts

Voice of America (VOA) - 1942
– Short-wave, FM, AM, Web – Set up to be reliable and authoritative source of news that is accurate, objective and comprehensive – U.S. Government doesn’t want it to be objective in the War on Terrorism - says it should be a “mouthpiece” for the U.S.
 VOA supporters say it can’t afford to destroy its credibility w/ the world because U.S. isn’t trusted

US government doesn’t always like the high journalistic standards of VOA  Created the following voices:

– – – –

Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty - Soviet Union Radio Sawa - Middle East Al Hurra TV station - answer to pan-Arab’s Al Jazeera

U.S. Firms Working For Other Governments

The objective to hiring U.S. firms is to:
– – – – – Influence U.S. foreign policy Receive counsel about U.S. reaction Advance country’s commercial interest To assist in communicating in English Win U.S. support and understanding


All must be registered w/ US Department of Justice

Problems when working w/ other Countries
Deciding if firm should represent country, such as China, whose human rights issues may adversely affect firm  Persuading heads of such nations to alter policy to achieve outcome  Convincing officials of other countries that the American press is independent and can’t be bought - no 100% favorable coverage  Deciding to represent autocratic head of state

Nongovernmental organizations  Sometimes considered more credible than news media (by public) because their motivation is based on morals, not profit and have a history of a nearly spotless image  Getting more press in last 4 years

– – – – –

International Red Cross World Council of Churches Greenpeace Amnesty International Doctors Without Borders

Career Opportunities
2nd language skills help!  International relations courses help!  Background in global marketing  Background in social and economic geography  Background in cross-cultural communication  If you’ll live overseas, you’re hired!

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