Research Proposal
Table of Contents
Research Question and Background…………………………………………………………………………….. 3
Literature Review………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 4
Research Objectives……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 6
Research Methodology Section……………………………………………………………………………………. 6
Qualitative and Quantitative Research designs…………………………………………………………… 6
Research Approach…………………………………………………………………………………………………. 8
Research Strategy…………………………………………………………………………………………………… 9
Data Collection Sources………………………………………………………………………………………….. 9
Research Expectations, Ethical considerations and their implications……………………………… 11
References………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 12
Research Question and Background
Localization strategy refers to the exercise of adapting the functional properties and characteristics of a product to fit as per the differences such as cultural, legal, political, and language of foreign market (Iwabuchi, 2002). The utilization of this strategy is beneficial for many international firms to get success and ensure long-term survivability. For the reason, this strategy supports in effectively meeting with the customers' expectations in the global market. The main emphasize of this research is to evaluate the localization strategy of L'Oreal in China. The main reason behind selecting Chinese context is that the local market in China is highly attractive for big cosmetic firms and therefore, these organizations consider China for increasing sales (Mulder, 2010). Additionally, the rapidness of growth in the cosmetic industry of China is so steep that each brand is successful and has unbelievable aspects to expand market share. Thus, the examination of localization strategy of L'Oreal in China would be an interesting research issue for this study.
Additionally, the below are the research questions that will be answered through this study to successfully resolve the research issue: What are the important factors that motivate cosmetic firms to accept localization strategy over other strategies? What is the localization strategy of L'Oreal and how it contributes in the growth and long-term survival of the company in China? What are the effective ways to implement localization strategy in a successful manner? Literature Review
The study by Gupta and Chatterjee (2009) suggests that the main reason due to which L'Oreal adopts localization strategy is to enhance the market share of the company in China. It is found that the adoption of this strategy also supported the company to design new products that fitted the Chinese skin and hair type. It is because the recruitment of local workers as well as acquisition of local brands assisted the firm to know more about the needs and expectations of the Chinese customers resulting in designing products and services accordingly (Gupta and Chatterjee, 2009). Thus, it can also be discussed that market share and improvement in profitability are some important factors that encourage international companies to adopt localization strategy.
At the same time, from the website of L'Oreal China (2017), it is also assessed that the localization is a big part of L'Oreal's strategy because the company has also based its research center in Shanghai (Pudong). In this having of local R&D greatly support the company to effectively understand the needs of Chinese consumers. Moreover, it also developed the L'Oreal's capability as more flexible to match with the current market trends in China.
In support of the above views, Yingying (2011) also stated that L'Oreal has done well in localization strategies in China. In addition to the adoption of localized strategies, L'Oreal also acquired successfully different local brands such as Mininurse and Yue-Sai. It is believed by the company that as Chinese consumers love these brands, these are great assets for L'Oreal to develop the Chinese market (Yingying, 2011). These brands are also supportive for the company to reach wide range of consumers that other brands cannot achieve. It also indicates that to attract and retain large number of consumers in the international market, the adoption of localization strategy is important for foreign companies.
Moreover, it is evaluated from the research by Singh (2017), that the consideration of localization or adaptation strategy is beneficial for multinational organizations because it helps in taking into account the inbuilt diversity that survives in international markets. Furthermore, it assists the managers in treating each person as "cultural beings" whose behaviours and values are determined by the unique culture (Singh, 2017). It is the reason that this strategy emphasizes towards realizing preferences of local consumers as well as other specific local requirements and then adjusting various business and other marketing strategies accordingly in order to satisfy the needs and wants of the consumers in a best way (Hu, Chen, and Yang, 2016). It shows that to enhance customer satisfaction rate in the foreign market, the use of localization strategy is good for the international companies.
In addition to this, it is also found that Chinese workforce plays an important role in the success of local strategy of L'Oreal in China. In this, it is found that 95% of the company's workforce is local employees and most of the sales and marketing executives and managers are also Chinese. Additionally, from the views of Singh (2017), it is also evaluated that the strategy to hire local workforce is important for doing business successfully in foreign market. It is because local workers have a good understanding of the language, the market, the culture, needs of the consumers, and the way to do business. In addition, the hiring of local employees also helps in reducing the cost of recruitment for international companies.
Thus, it can be discussed that there are several motivators such as create knowledge about the customers' needs and requirements, enhance market share, improve customer satisfaction rate and profitability, and make sure about long-term growth and survivability that encourage foreign companies like L'Oreal to adopt localization strategy. It can also be discussed that L'Oreal successfully implemented localization strategy by hiring local workforce, developing local R&D, and designing local products. Moreover, it also contributed in the growth and success of L'Oreal in China by enhancing customer attraction and retention rate resulting in improving revenue and profitability position.
Research Objectives
The listed below are the research objectives that will be attained with the completion of this study: To critically examine the factors that encourage cosmetic companies to adopt localization strategy. To identify and examine the localization strategy of L'Oreal in China. To discuss the role of localization strategy in the growth and survival and L'Oreal in China. To recommend strategies to effectively adopt localization strategy to make sure about long-term success. Research Methodology Section Qualitative and Quantitative Research designs The selection of a suitable research design plays an important role in enhancing the reliability towards the final research outcomes. It is because both quantitative and qualitative research designs are effective to align both primary and secondary research results. In this, it is assessed that the use of qualitative research approach is beneficial to gather in-depth and wide range of information about the research issue (Chawla and Sodhi, 2011). It also indicates that for the research, which requires theoretical observations that cannot be counted and measured numerically; the use of qualitative design is useful. For the reason, qualitative research design allows the researcher to research, understand, and define the reasons behind the research issue effectively resulting in providing effectual results (Monsen and Horn, 2007).
On the other hand, the use of quantitative design is related with the collection and analysis of numeric data. Therefore, the application of this research design is suitable for the studies that emphasize to examine the cause and effect relationship. The researches that focus on obtaining more exact and specific findings also utilize quantitative design because it considers the use of large sample size as well as statistical techniques to provide generalize findings that can be applied to wide people (Wiid and Diggines, 2010).
In the case of this research, the author will use qualitative research design instead of quantitative design. The main reason behind using the qualitative design is that as the research issue focuses on the examination of localization strategy of cosmetic companies, there is need to gather wide range of qualitative information in order to develop understanding about the research problem as well as successfully answer various research questions (Polit and Beck, 2010).
In addition to this, the research will also be based on the use of survey through questionnaire process that considers small sample size, therefore the use of qualitative design over quantitative design will be suitable for the enquiry. At the same time, the researcher avoids the use of quantitative design for this research because due to limited time and budget constraints, the researcher will not collect numerical data and applies statistical techniques (Woodside, 2010). Thus, it can be stated that the use of qualitative design over quantitative design would be beneficial for this research to successfully resolve the research problem. Research Approach Inductive and deductive are two main research approaches that are effective to utilize in a research in order to justify the selection and use of a particular data collection and analysis method. In the views of Anderson (2004), inductive research approach goes from specific to general as in this, on the basis of particular measurements and observations, general conclusions are made. This approach also does not involve any prior assumption to classify and measure data. In contrary, deductive approach going from more general to more specific. It is because in this, the researcher first formulates hypothesis based on the theories that further are tested through the specific observations.
Moreover, Engel and Schutt (2009) suggested that the researcher should design hypothesis in a way that involves all the variables in an objective manner. After the creation of hypothesis, the researcher gathers all the needed data and test the hypothesis to confirm, reject or modify particular theories.
This particular research will be based on the use of inductive approach as the inquiry will go from specific to general. For instance, first, the researcher will gather specific data that demonstrate the use of localization strategy of cosmetic, L'oreal. Furthermore, general conclusions will be made about the effectiveness of this strategy in the growth and survival of the company (Hair, Wolfinbarger, and Money, 2015). In addition to this, as the research issue does not require the development and testing of any theory or hypothesis, the researcher also avoids the use of deductive approach for this study. Moreover, the use of inductive approach is also associated with qualitative research design, thus, its application for this research would also be beneficial to successfully complete this research (Gratton and Jones, 2010). Research Strategy Before starting any research, the selection and utilization of an optimal research strategy is essential for the researchers. It is because it helps in successfully completing the research in the given time and budget (Hair, 2015).Surveys, case study, experiments, histories, and archival analyses are five important research strategies that can be applied by the researcher as per fitness with the research issue and organize the study in the right direction. Wemken and Eckert (2007) suggested various situations such as focus on contemporary or historic events, kind of research questions to be answered, and behavioural events control requirement that are effective to select a suitable strategy for the research.
In the case of this research, as the main focus is on the L'Oreal's localization strategy in China, which is an contemporary issue, the use of survey and case study strategies will be suitable for this study. In addition, as the research questions involved what and why, the implementation of both these strategies will also be beneficial for the researcher to organize this study in the right direction and answer all the research questions successfully (Wemken and Eckert, 2007). Moreover, the research will also not involve the need for behavioural control, thus, case study and survey strategies are appropriate for this research. Data Collection Sources Primary and secondary are two main data gathering sources that are effective to gather all the needed data in a more valid and reliable manner. In this, primary data gathering sources are effective to collect fresh data that is specific to the research issue and in control of the researcher (Cohen, Manion, Morrison, and Morrison, 2007). For the reason, primary method allows the researchers to gather data as per their suitability by using either survey, interview, focus group, or observation methods. On the other hand, secondary data is already has been collected by the researcher by using different secondary sources (Scruggs & Mastropieri 2006). This method is beneficial to collect wide range of data in a limited time period, but concurrently, it is difficult to determine the authenticity of such data. It is because such data is gathered by the researchers for different purposes, which are other than the current research purpose (Cooper and Schindler, 2006).
In the case of this research, to gather reliable and authentic data in limited time period, the researcher will use both primary and secondary data collection methods. For example, secondary data will be gathered by using various previous research studies through getting access to Google scholar in order to identify the books and journal articles that demonstrate the localization strategy of cosmetic (Beiske, 2007). At the same time, primary data will be gathered by applying survey through questionnaire process. The main reason behind using survey process is that this method will help in gathering fresh views of the respondents that further will support in providing more relevant and reliable results defining the role of localization strategy of L'Oreal in the overall business growth in China (Axinn and Pearce, 2006).
The population for the survey process includes the employees of L'Oreal in China. This population is mainly selected because it will support in getting effective insights about the localization strategy of the company in China as well as their role and importance in the overall business growth. Moreover, as it is difficult to collect responses from a wider population, a suitable sample will be selected that will represent the views of the whole population (Rubin and Babbie, 2010). The sample size will be chosen for this research by using random sampling strategy under probability sampling method. The selected sample size for this population includes 50 employees of L'Oreal. The main reason behind using this sample size is that it will support in organizing a qualitative study resulting in accomplishing the research within given time and budget.
Research Expectations, Ethical considerations and their implications
It is expected that the main outcome of this study is related with the description of localization strategy of the company. Moreover, it will also suggest the role and importance of localization strategy of L'Oreal in the success of the company in China. It will also describe the factors that encourage cosmetic companies to adopt localization strategy in the international market like China.
In order to complete this study in an ethical manner, the researcher will follow out the University ethics checking procedures. It is because some ethics related issues will be faced by the researcher during the completion of this research. For example, as the researcher will gather primary data for this study, the ethical issues will be related with taking prior consent of the respondents as well as ensuring confidentiality of the gathered information (Bryman and Bell, 2015). Another ethical issue will be related with the use of information as it is and use of authentic and reliable secondary data. The researcher will consider all these ethical issues for successfully completing this research.
The likely implementation of this research is related with improving corporate governance of L'Oreal with the use of localization strategy in China in an effective and efficient way.
References
Anderson, V. (2004) Research Methods in Human Resource Management. UK: CIPD Publishing.
Axinn, W.G. & Pearce, L.D. (2006) Mixed Method Data Collection Strategies. UK: Cambridge University Press.
Beiske, B. (2007) Research Methods: Uses and Limitations of Questionnaires, Interviews, and Case Studies. GRIN Verlag.
Bryman, A. and Bell, E. (2015) Business Research Methods. UK: Oxford University Press.
Chawla, D. and Sodhi, N. (2011) Research Methodology: Concepts and Cases. Vikas Publishing House.
Cohen, L., Manion, L., Morrison, K. and Morrison, K. R. B. (2007) Research Methods in Education. UK: Routledge.
Cooper, D.R. and Schindler, P.S. (2006) Business Research Method, 9th Edition. Boston: McGraw-Hill Irwin.
Engel, R. J. and Schutt, R. K. (2009) The Practice of Research in Social Work. USA: SAGE.
Gratton, C. and Jones, I. (2010) Research Methods for Sports Studies. UK: Taylor & Francis.
Gupta, V. and Chatterjee, P. (2009) L'ORÉAL IN CHINA CASE – Reference no. 309-191-1. IBS Center for Management Research. Available at: https://www.thecasecentre.org/main/products/view?id=90584 [Accessed: 24th March, 2018].
Hair, J. F. (2015) Essentials of Business Research Methods. USA: M.E. Sharpe.
Hair, J. F., Wolfinbarger, M. and Money, A. H. (2015) Essentials of Business Research Methods. UK: Routledge.
Hu, Z., Chen, X. and Yang, Z. (2016) Research Frontiers on the International Marketing Strategies of Chinese Brands. UK: Routledge.
Iwabuchi, K. (2002) Recentering Globalization: Popular Culture and Japanese Transnationalism. Duke University Press.
L'Oreal (2017) L’ORÉAL CELEBRATES 20 YEARS ADVENTURE IN CHINA. Available at: http://www.loreal.com/media/press-releases/2017/jan/loreal-celebrates-20-years-adventure-in-china [Accessed: 24th March, 2018].
Monsen, E. R. and Horn, L. V. (2007) Research: Successful Approaches. USA: American Dietetic Associati.
Mulder, L. (2010) Global cosmetics going local. Available at: http://arno.uvt.nl/show.cgi?fid=115842 [Accessed: 24th March, 2018].
Polit, D. F., and Beck, C. T. (2010) Essentials of Nursing Research: Appraising Evidence for Nursing Practice. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Rubin, A. and Babbie, E. (2010) Research Methods for Social Work. USA: Cengage Learning.
Scruggs, T. E & Mastropieri, M. A. (2006) Applications of Research Methodology, UK: Emerald Group Publishing.
Singh, N. (2017) A Localized Global Marketing Strategy. Brand Quarterly. Available at: http://www.brandquarterly.com/localized-global-marketing-strategy [Accessed: 24th March, 2018].
Wemken, S., and Eckert, A. (2007) Channel Design for the European Trade with Beverages – A Case Study about Beer-Mixtures. Germany: GRIN Verlag.
Wiid, J. and Diggines, C. (2010) Marketing Research. South Africa: Juta and Company Ltd.
Woodside, A. G. (2010) Case Study Research: Theory, Methods, Practice. UK: Emerald Group Publishing.
Yingying, S. (2011) L'Oreal builds on its Chinese foundation. China Daily Europe. Available at: http://europe.chinadaily.com.cn/epaper/2011-03/11/content_12155246.htm [Accessed: 24th March, 2018].

"Get 15% discount on your first 3 orders with us"
Use the following coupon
"FIRST15"

Order Now