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Call for Papers | Journal of International Marketing: International Selling and Sales Management

Call for Papers | Journal of International Marketing: International Selling and Sales Management

stacking blocks

As companies expand their international footprint, the field of sales continues to evolve. For example, salespeople are now expected to engage with global and local customers outside of their domestic markets. In addition, sales managers need to lead sales teams that are becoming more diverse and spread out as they extend across different countries, cultures, and regions.  

To date, the academic sales literature has largely neglected research questions that consider these trends and instead focused on within-country and within-culture research. Notwithstanding the important contributions of this existing research, it is unclear how findings generalize to or are contingent on international contexts. Thus, there remains a need to discover and advance theoretical and managerial insights to guide international sales practitioners and scholars.


We are thus calling for academic papers on international selling and sales management. Topics for special issue submissions may include the following (among others):

Personal Selling Topics

International sales practices and processes

  • Generating leads in international sales contexts
  • Needs identification in international sales contexts
  • Intercultural effects of persuasion and influence in international sales contexts 
  • Handling objections and closing sales cross-culturally (e.g., dealing with cultural animosity)
  • Intercultural negotiations
  • Building and maintaining relationships with cross-cultural customers 
  • Global sales service  
  • International and global account management

International salesperson experiences

  • Cultural effects on salesperson emotions, stress, and well-being
  • Salesperson job-related perceptions and attitudes 
  • Time and territory management across cultures
  • Utilization of different world languages 
  • National and cultural identity 
  • The lived experiences of salespeople belonging to groups marginalized because of nationality or ethnicity
  • Salesperson motivation in different cultures and national contexts
  • Sales stereotypes across cultures 
  • Ethics of selling across cultures (e.g., norms and regulations around bribery)

International selling success factors

  • Intercultural knowledge, skills, abilities (KSAs) required for international selling (e.g., cultural sensitivity)
  • Dispositional traits and aptitudes favoring success across cultures
  • Different sales behaviors across cultures (e.g., adaptive selling, customer orientation)
  • Managing international stakeholders 
  • Collaboration across cross-cultural sales teams

The environmental context of personal selling in international settings

  • Selling in politically unstable environments 
  • Selling in developing and emerging markets
  • Morality and religiosity in international selling
  • The adoption of sales technology across countries and cultures (e.g., CRM, sales enablement, sales analytics, AI)
  • The impact of global climate change on personal selling
  • Impact of different country laws and regulatory environments on global selling practices 
  • Selling during and post international crises (e.g., COVID) 

Sales Management Topics

Leading and managing a sales force in international settings

  • How to lead salespeople with different nationalities and international backgrounds
  • How to compensate and incentivize salespeople in different international settings
  • How to best train, develop, and promote an international salesforce
  • Sales recruitment, assessment, and selection internationally 
  • Managing sales during and post international crises (e.g., COVID) 
  • Evaluation of performance in international contexts (e.g., KPIs)
  • Sales force control in international contexts
  • Performance management (e.g., target setting, appraisal and assessment)
  • Differences in sales leadership styles cross-culturally
  • Navigating cross-cultural issues
  • International sales management planning

Developing and sustaining an international sales strategy and organization

  • How to develop and implement an international sales strategy
  • How to find a sales strategy or adapt an existing one for moving from mature to emerging markets
  • How to adapt a sales strategy to defend ground against international competition
  • Different sales structures and roles in international settings
  • Which sales channels to use to internationalize
  • Achieving diversity and inclusion in international sales organizations
  • How do current mega-trends shape international sales organizations

The special issue is open to all methodologies, including experiments, modeling, case studies, meta-analysis, surveys, qualitative studies, and others, including full-length articles and research notes (shorter articles with a 4,000-word limit).* In addition, conceptual papers that offer a substantial contribution to the international marketing literature are welcome.

The topics listed above should be seen as suggestions, and papers on other topics that advance knowledge in international sales contexts are also welcome.

Submissions for the special issue are due on August 31, 2022. 

Special Issue Guest Editors

Nawar Chaker, Louisiana State University
Johannes Habel, University of Houston
Alex Zablah, University of Tennessee
Kelly Hewett, University of Tennessee

* Research notes should be under 4,000 words, including everything in the manuscript. Research notes should have the same rigor, style, and tone as full-length articles. Notes should identify relevant prior research, clearly articulate their contribution to international marketing research, and provide compelling evidence for their arguments. Notes are different from articles in that their contribution is timely, high-impact, and original, though their empirical evidence might be preliminary in nature.