Innocent Smoothies Are Coming to Japan

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Innocent is a well-established smoothie and health food company in its home market of the UK and has had success in moving into various markets in the European Union. With the added partnership with global brand Coca-Cola, it could be said that Innocent is in prime position to begin its expansion into new markets globally. This report will note the benefits and potential risks of entering the chosen market of Japan based on research and theoretical analysis.
Japan was first chosen due to initial research showing that it was one of the most health conscious countries in the world, with the lowest obesity rates. Further investigation showed their links with Coca Cola, and a gap in the market for ‘off the shelf smoothies’, despite the existing popularity of health drinks and demand for commuter friendly food.
However entering into a market as different as Japan is not without its risks, and must be ensured to be successful, with the help of market research, marketing, and operational theories, lest the new venture become a very costly mistake.

Target Consumer Market
When moving to a market with a consumer culture so different from the home market, a company must be careful to analyse its target audience in detail, to avoid and costly cultural faux pas. To get a good feel for the Japanese culture, a good place to start would be the experts in the cultural studies field. Hofstede’s cultural dimensions, created during his in depth GLOBE study of the cultures of the world, gives a good comparison between the priority differences between Japanese and English culture. A detailed analysis of the cultural differences will be given in the ‘Marketing Issues’ section of the report.
As for specific cultural information, the most...

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...n with many signs written like this (Annual of Display & Commercial Space Designs in Japan 1984., 1983). A direct translation of ‘Innocent’ to Japanese means ‘pure hearted’ (Junsui). As this has no negative connotations, it is the best translation of the word Innocent and therefore would good to use as the Japanese name.
This will retain brand image, and work toward creating globally recognised brand, with the change in name not having a detrimental effect, to use the example of Lays/Walkers in the UK and abroad. English is the language of business in Japan and therefore it should be easy to get correct translation using cultural experts.
Assuming success in the original market entry, there is much potential for development, including bringing in more of Innocent’s product range, and expansion to the rest of Japan, which could be the gateway to the rest of Asia.

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