Cultures Explain the Difference Between

In launching a new product into a high context culture, recruiting a dealers and distributors for a new product could take literally months or years if a foreigner attempted to do this on their own. What is more expedient to seek out trusted advisors in the specific markets of interest in Japan for example, and through continual, proven execution of promises and commitments, including delivering products on time, not changing the price, and continually building a relationship with these advisors could eventual market growth be attained.

A second major challenge in marketing within a high context culture is the significantly different perception of time relative to low context cultures. In high context cultures there is a much higher tolerance of ambiguity in addition to a much more patient approach to how business is done. In low context cultures ambiguity is not tolerated and in fact there is a rush to certainty in many business dealings.

In launching a new product into Japan there needs to be a much more patient, longer-term perspective taken in the development of entirely new businesses. The development of networks of trusted advisors and the ability to assimilate into the high context culture must first be accomplished if a business is going to prosper in a high context culture.


Lindsay, G (2005). Toward a Cultural Model of Indigenous Entrepreneurial Attitude. Academy of Marketing Science Review, 2005, 1. Retrieved January.

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