Brand Culturalization – Chinese Style

brand culturalisation

As the world gets smaller and more brands are competing on a global scale, increasingly they’re realizing the playing field is far from even.
Not all brands are born equal. Some brands evolve with distinct advantages in their DNA whether that be a regional bias, first in category, staff culture, or a myriad of other possibilities. But when it comes to brand culturalization – the way in which an organisation’s people live and breath the brand – those born in China have a distinct advantage…

This clip from the Arirang Hotel in Dandong, North east China shows a morning training session with staff that by Western standards seems incredibly militant. But like it or not, what we see is a training program the likes-of-which no Western hotel chains would be likely to implement – great for human rights, but that does nothing the quell the unsettling feeling that the folk at Arirang Hotels are building themselves a powerful brand advantage.

The clip has created a furor of conversation in China itself. On leading Chinese video-sharing website Youku, the video accumulated nearly 2 million views in its first day and currently has more than 42,000 comments spanning over 1,400 pages. But whether-or-not this clip re-sets the bar for hotel staff training in the global market, it represents a wake-up call to brands anywhere who compete everywhere; the rules have changed – we’re not in Kansas anymore Toto.

Dave Ansett
Chief Cre­ator of Brands
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