Regional differences in sales

I’ve been thinking a lot about regional influence on purchases within the US. It feels as though a well-marketed product should be equally successful across the US, however, I wonder if that’s true. Now, I work at a company that is regional, therefore, I have no way of seeing if I could discern a pattern in our sales. However, I know others here might know more.

So, are their regional sales differences in your company? Do they seem to be influenced by aesthetics at all?

I live in the PNW, and what sells in NYC, might sometimes maybe sell here. Food is more likely regional, autos/trucks too with funiture running in the mix as well.

What would be the differences though? After I wrote my post I thought about differences between Arizona (where I went to school), Florida (where I grew up) and Canada.

One major factor is climate. From the people I talk to, carpet was never that in fashion in Canada. I can understand with how dirty shoes get in winter. Hardwood and ceramics just make more sense.

Another factor is suburban/rural/urban divides. I think this explains most regional auto sales differences. I know that New Mexico is the US’s largest market for pick ups. It’s also mostly rural and suburban (I know in Arizona that downtown Phoenix is barely what I would consider an urban area, I assume the same for Albuquerque).

I used to think that modernist furniture would sell better in urban centres. It probably does, but after watching Trading Spaces and the other DIY decorating shows, I realize that most people everywhere have much more pedestrian tastes. That kind of throws that off.

To give some background about why I am thinking about this, it’s because of the Quebec anamoly. Here is a place with 90% of its population huddled within an hours drive of the US. It receives US radio and TV signals. The people travel to Ontario and the US often. Despite this, there are such strong cultural divides.*

Food is a big one, but it has stayed more regional than in the US. I’m thinking poutine in particular. This has not traveled very far out of the province. Also, is their peculiar taste for small cars. The Mazda 3 is their current biggest seller. Before that, it was the Civic (in the US, it’s the F150). When I was designing lighting fixtures, the differences were huge too. Here, a four inch recessed light is considered big. In the US, it’s hard to find a pot light below 4" dia.

All of this combined is strange. Very strange. The worst thing is, I can’t say it is all because of language. That just doesn’t explain everything.** There is more too, trust me.

So that got me wondering…what differences are there in the US, that we might not be aware of.

*my french friends point out, however, other than language, Quebecers are much more American than European.

**notably the word for car in french is female. I think that might explain why the french haven’t produced a Hummer competitor yet.

folks in quebec are like the basque, a rule unto themselfs…more french than the french (trite comment but true). In autos you still have calif imports outselling domestic, where in the east the domestics still have traction. On the home front, its still largely what people either feel comfortable with or are aspring to be, with that latter one driven by various forms of pop culture. The only way is to explore, do the old ground work and not to assume anything.