Despite the increasing attention Global Marketing Strategy (GMS) is receiving in the academic literature, researchers have paid relatively little attention to whether markets can be segmented cross-nationally. Drawing on GMS theory, this study predicts the existence of stable cross-market segments in the sportswear industry. Surveying a cross-national group of consumers from Austria, China, South Korea, and the United States regarding their lifestyle preferences, the study collected data on demographics, evaluative attributes, and purchase patterns, garnering a total of 1031 usable questionnaires from the four nations. Results of a factor analysis identify eight lifestyle factors that can be used to help segment sportswear consumers. A follow-up cluster analysis indicates four psychographic segments cut across cultural boundaries: Fashion Leaders, Conspicuous Fashion Consumers, Sensational Seekers, and Sociable Followers. The study also investigates whether the four segments can be targeted separately and finds that they do, indeed, present different characteristics. The findings support the existence of similarities across the world fashion markets that allow the sportswear industry to target market segments based on the theoretical framework.
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