How the iPod Explains Globalization

Innovation and Job Creation in a Global Economy

A New York Times article published in June explores the research done by a trio of researchers – Greg Linden, University of California, Berkeley; Jason Dedrick, Syracuse University; and Kenneth L. Lraemer, University of California, Irvine – as to the relationship of a product (Apple’s iPod) to the globalization economy as a whole. The paper, entitled Innovation and Job Creation in a Global Economy: The Case of Apple’s iPod, was written in response to the growing assumption that domestic innovation only increases jobs abroad, leaving domestic workers without jobs.

From NYTimes.com:

Now come what might be the surprises. The first is that even though most of the iPod jobs are outside the United States, the lion’s share of the iPod salaries are in America. Those 13,920 American workers earned nearly $750 million. By contrast, the 27,250 non-American Apple employees took home less than $320 million.

That disparity is even more significant when you look at the composition of America’s iPod workforce. More than half the U.S. jobs — 7,789 — went to retail and other nonprofessional workers, like office support staff and freight and distribution workers. But those workers earned just $220 million.

As with everything, there are winners a losers. In this case, the winners are the Apple innovators and shareholders, while the losers are those who look grimly at “the American iPod jobs [that] are relatively poorly paid and low-skilled.”

The full New York Times article is available to read at: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/01/world/asia/01iht-letter01.html?_r=1

The research piece is available at: http://pcic.merage.uci.edu/papers/2011/InnovationJobCreationiPod.pdf

Join our upcoming webinar on December 1st at 11am PT to learn about the strategies used in localizing a major online music store


Establishing a Global Business Plan

Creating a robust global marketing plan in the face of economic uncertainty is a difficult task; but a necessary one. As global markets expand and become valuable customers, successful businesses must strive to develop good relationships and good products for those markets. The business reasons for expanding to a global market are often understood, but the process can be difficult. This is where companies go wrong and the localization and internationalization process becomes a time & cost consuming project.

Getting it done right the first time is an important way to ensure cost control and quality. Creating an understanding of the global business plan across the company is paramount to avoiding miscommunication and successfully implementing a global strategy. Have the internationalization/localization team sit down and discuss what metrics will be used to measure success. Enable one person of expertise to overlook the whole process and cross-check it to make sure the project meets the standards initially established. Think of this as a sort of version control; everything meets the same standards even though it is being produced by different teams.

Remember, customers prefer buying in their own language. So when developing a global business plan, put yourself in the shoes of the potential customer. Would you buy a product that you don’t understand? Not likely. This is why quality internationalization and localization are so important in creating a successful global business.

Macroeconomic Argument for American Companies to Internationalize

Summary of article by Philip Guarino of Elementi Consulting (see link below)

You hear it in the news everyday… bad economy this, bad economy that. But are there opportunities that an otherwise good economy would not present?

That answer is yes.

Data gathered by the US Department of Commerce shows that American consumers are spending less and saving more. With exports playing a relatively small part in US GDP, this means that the domestic market that so many companies rely on isn’t yielding the same level of demand that it once did. Additionally, with the depreciating dollar, the power of the money earned domestically is also decreasing. The kicker here is that the dollar is now cheaper for foreign countries to buy. This gives foreign countries more incentive to import products from the US.

The next step is how; how can US companies take advantage of a devalued dollar in a struggling economy? Through internationalization of their products, US companies can make their products more appealing to foreign buyers, thus capitalizing on the increased buying power in the foreign market.

For the full article, visit http://www.elementiconsulting.com/insights/the-export-imperative/

Lingoport has helped companies reach international markets since 2001: http://www.lingoport.com/

Worldware Presentation – The Rise of Chindia: Opportunity or Threat?

The rise of China and India (Chindia) has had a significant impact on the global economy as their markets have opened up to western companies and their labor force has become more highly educated. This presentation delves into the game changing effects Chindia has on already developed economies; specifically, do China and India pose an opportunity? Or are they a threat to take over previously developed businesses?

Presented by:

  • Nitish Singh, assistant professor of international business at the Boeing Institute of International Business at Saint Louis University and the program leader for the Executive Certificate in Web Globalization.