Why Recognizing Cultural Differences of Foreign Buyers Is Important (part 2)

In the previous post we talked about the significance of learning about the cultural differences of your foreign buyers for being successful in international sales.

Dealing with the foreigners in everyday life also requires some knowledge of their culture. They may consider rude what is just normal for you or they might do something that you consider rude, but it is normal for them.

Let’s look at Russians vs. Americans cultural differences: Americans smile almost automatically in almost any situation, but the Russians smile only when they consider that something is funny and behaving like that they are not being rude, just normal.

Another thing that you may not know: Americans move along the row facing the screen and turning their back to already seated people when they try to find their seat in the movie theater or any similar place, but Russians would consider it very rude as they move only facing the already sitting people.

Sometimes having the best intentions one can offend people anyway. A real life story: an American boy in love with a Russian girl was about to meet her parents for the first time. He got well prepared and bought two dozen of beautiful roses for the girl’s mother. What he was not aware of at all: in Russia only the odd number of flowers has to be in a bouquet presented to a live person, but the even number of flowers would fit only for the funeral. He was about to make a hint to his future mother-in-law: the sooner you die the better. A person knowing the Russian cultural habits stopped him in time for which he was very thankful later (although disbelieving at first).

You may start learning the foreign culture by reading a book about the country you have chosen as your target to bring buyers from there, the people of the country and their culture. If you think that this is a hard and long way to learn, then find a person who belongs to this culture and is bilingual and ask them all the questions you might have.

In case you wish to develop the ongoing business of selling real estate to foreign buyers of some country, it is worthwhile to find a bilingual marketing consultant who will be working for you on a project basis or part-time and also will consult you on the cultural differences among other things.

 It is always good to know several words in the potential buyers’ language, such as “Hello”, “Thank you” and “How are you?”, and people will definitely warm up to you for that. We will talk more about communication with foreign buyers in general later in this book.

A summary: Foreign cultures are different, it is possible to learn the cultural differences of your foreign buyers to your advantage.

Copyright © 2016 by Olga Kellen
All Rights Reserved

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