Business

How to take your marketing materials global

In this article, I will discuss how to make your company’s marketing materials stand out globally. 

A global marketing strategy, as defined by Johny K. Johansson in its corresponding entry in the Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing Online, is “a strategy that encompasses countries from several different regions in the world and aims at coordinating a company’s marketing efforts in markets in these countries.”

Some people consider that global marketing materials must be monolingual. But it is too simplistic to only have monolingual marketing materials in the era in which we live. It is important to have marketing materials in multiple languages if your business seeks to go global.

Future Group, an expert language services company, can help with your needs in creating global marketing materials. When marketing globally, you will need to choose a strategy, of which there are many.

How do you choose a marketing strategy when your business is seeking to go global?

There are several factors to consider.

One is that in most cases, the brand name should be the same across different areas of the globe where you want to market your business. That means that different brand names should not be used. This helps create coherence for your brand. Customers will also realize that the brand is a worldwide brand this way, and that will create respect for your company, also facilitating more buyers to get on board with what you are selling.

A second factor is whether or not the product or service you are selling is perceived in the same way across the globe. Different cultures may receive different products and services in distinct ways. So make sure to do your research in a systematized fashion before beginning to attempt to market your products or services in a different country or region. This can save money, time, and effort. More importantly, the time, effort, and money you spend will be more efficient if you know how to target your efforts in global marketing. 

A third factor is making decisions on whether or not your company wants to be a global brand, a regional brand, or a local brand. These distinctions are subtle but important. A global brand is one that maintains its uniformity across the globe. For example, a brand that keeps the same name all over the world is a global brand. A regional brand is one that has the same name across the region – for example, a brand that has one name in Asia but has a different name in the United States is considered a regional brand. However, with a regional brand, it is usually the same company that operates all of the regional brands, even though the names are distinct across regions. In our example, there would be one company running the regional brands in both Asia and the United States. Finally, the local brand is one that exists in only one to two markets. An example of this kind of brand would be one that has a very specific reach in one city or region in a country, perhaps having a different reach in a limited fashion somewhere else.

When you have it in mind to take your company onto the global stage, you will want to do it right the first time, as mistakes can be extremely costly. The obvious meaning of this is that you will lose out on potential customers. But there is a second sense in which you need to get global marketing right. It comes down to the fact that your marketing materials must be appealing. 

In short, this means that your marketing materials must be translated to the language of where you are hoping to expand your business. But that is only the beginning. The harder effort will be to retain customers once you have expanded your business globally. This means you must continue to examine the factors that lead to effective sales in your target market. This is not an easy task, but it can be achieved with the right mindset and expertise.

“Going global” is basically a new catchphrase. What does it really mean? The definition of it is that it is working in a global market. This means that you must, as a business, understand cultural nuances, differences in opinion in one market versus another, appreciate other cultures, and hire the right people to do the job in order to help your business succeed.

There are hundreds of ways to take your business onto the global stage. However, only those who have the perseverance and the right tools will succeed.

Many businesses these days are trying to enter the global scene. It seems everyone wants to have an international presence. Thus, expert translators, interpretations and localization services in Canada and the US are in high demand. 

You must then identify who are the best translators and interpreters in order to succeed globally. Or at least that would follow from the previous logic.

So you may not identify the fact that document translation services are extremely important when it comes to global marketing. They certainly are important. In fact, they are crucial for your business’s success.

Along with interfacing directly with potential customers, when you are running a global enterprise, you will want to have expertly-handled materials to present to potential clients. This will create the right atmosphere between your business and your clients. The right clients are essential to growing your business in other markets across the globe.

One suggestion as to how to make your marketing materials stand out globally is that you must consider carefully how the culture is likely to perceive your marketing materials. This means that in a given market, cultural context must be taken into account before creating your marketing materials. Cultural context can include anything from social customs to other forms of heritage, including religious rituals, and can include musical tastes. Making sure you conduct your market research in an in-depth fashion will help iron out any potential misunderstandings when you do decide to publish these marketing materials in a foreign country. 

Another suggestion is that cultural references may not have any meaning in another culture. So, making sure your marketing materials do not reference anything exclusive to your source culture can be really important, given that many cultural references cannot be translated. Take for example the idea of the hamburger as the quintessential United States dish. This cannot necessarily be transferred over to any culture. As you can see, it would not make a lot of sense to use this reference exclusively, especially as it relates to other cultures. Other cultures may not value the hamburger as a cultural reference as much as United States culture does. While they will probably understand the reference, it may not have the same impact on another culture as it would in the United States. So, be careful when it comes to specific cultural references.

Yet, even if you adapt a cultural reference successfully, you should keep in mind that not every cultural reference is appropriate. Be extremely judicious about your use of any cultural reference. Make sure to analyze every single one of them to ensure you will not cause offense to the target market. Some people say that so-called “politically incorrect” marketing can have some impact. I take the stance, however, that this is probably not a great idea. It could have some impact, but you could be losing out on more potential customers than you are gaining new clients here. It is especially important to avoid comments that are derogatory to a racial or cultural group here, as this can alienate a lot of people, and can create negative consequences for your brand, as well.

However, there should be some freedom for creativity. I am not saying that you should not be creative with your marketing materials. Of course, marketing materials should be engaging, and part of creating them, with document translation services in mind, ought to be an interesting process.

Other tips include employing locals in the culture you wish to expand into, or employing people who have significant experience in the target market. This can be extremely helpful because most of the time, these people understand the target market very well. These people can be invaluable resources in terms of creating engaging marketing materials.

Also, think beyond the traditional marketing materials gamut. A website, strong as it may be as a tool, needs to be optimized for different languages, and needs to take into account the various cultural tips that I discussed earlier. For this reason, I believe it is essential to have multilingual content on your website. Perhaps, you should even consider making separate websites based on your business’s scale, budget, and reach. These websites would differ in their content. In other words, the business website in Japan would look a lot different (not only in language but also in content, potentially), than the website designed for users in the United States would look. Think about hiring web developers who know the nuances of a culture, as this can help enormously. It can also help your business be more successful and ultimately more profitable.

References: 

Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing Online.

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