Lost in transcreation

September 16, 2016


September 16, 2016

Michael Gold
Editor, The Economist Intelligence Unit

Michael is a managing editor for The Economist Intelligence Unit's thought leadership division. Although Michael has roots in Montreal, he grew up in Palo Alto, California and attended Yale University, where he majored in anthropology. Prior to joining the Economist Group, Michael was a correspondent for Reuters in Taipei, where he covered the technology sector. He has also worked in Beijing and is fluent in Mandarin. 


Cultural perceptions can be a global marketer’s secret weapon.

When it comes to symbols, the smile reigns supreme. Its one connotation—happiness—is undisputed the world over. Yet despite the smile’s universal appeal, research suggests that culture affects our perceptions of it in unexpected ways... 

The meaning of subtle symbols like smiles and colours varies between Asian and Western cultures. What should marketers bear in mind when launching global campaigns? 

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