TORONTO – Two American retailers have promised to sell on Memorial Day to their Canadian customers this year, a practice one store analysts call “terrible” and “disrespectful”.
“Canadians are very sympathetic to trade in this sacred holiday,” independent marketing analyst and consultant Bruce Wintertold CTVNews.ca said in a telephone interview.
The Canadian-based site of Lenovo states that “our biggest Memorial Day sale is coming up every 2020,” and asks customers to sign up. Lenovo’s main office is in Beijing, with its headquarters in North Carolina.
Customers at blind retailer blinds.ca can get a fourth blind window unless they buy three under the company’s Rembembrance Day sale, which was due to end on November 11.
“At Blinds.ca we have the utmost respect for military veterans, their families and their sacrifices,” wrote spokeswoman Kathleen Hartnett, based in Houston.
Lenovo did not respond to a request for comment.
Memorial Day sales have been controversial in the past. Veterans and their organizations abandoned the same sales of Eddie Bauer in 2010, and The Gap in 2014.
The Whole Foods food chain reversed a controversial ban on papal-wearing workers last week, after political leaders including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario Prime Minister Doug Fordcond objected to this; Trudeau called it a “stupid mistake.”
Winter, along with Ryerson University historian Peter Vronsky, point out that Veterans Day sales are common in the U.S. About November 11, and they say companies seem to have taken the idea to Canada without paying enough attention to cultural differences.
“That is their cultural tradition, but Memorial Day has never been a holiday in that sense of the word here. This was a dignified, dark day. Americans have a different approach.
Winter says it is an example of commercial practices that are simply transmitted from one country to another without taking into account the cultural differences, something he calls “the error of the rookie.”
“There are many companies that think that in the way they market in their country, they can use the same methods directly around the world. That’s something you study hard, you can’t do – you have to be local. You need to think about local interests, local holidays, consumer feelings, and morals. ”
Marketing analyst Craig Patterson calls marketing a “major marketing failure” that could be prevented by basic research that would quickly reflect the controversies of previous years.
“The bar isn’t up – it’s very easy,” he said.
“I would just shake my head and say:‘ You just need to do your research. Do your homework. It’s not so hard to do a little round. You work in another country – you need to understand the culture of that country. ‘I don’t know that there are so many reasons.