Revenue streams thrive on effective, targeted marketing. When it comes to domestic sales, many companies have well-established channels and brand positioning that deliver above-average returns. But for those on the cusp of worldwide growth or looking to improve their fortune in markets outside their home country, the task of going global is daunting to say the least.
When comparing international marketing vs domestic marketing, however, three crucial insights can help you ensure advertising dollars are well-spent and campaign efforts are well-received.
1) Global Marketing Is Local in Disguise
The problem companies often have in global marketing is potential scope. How do you effectively retranslate web content in multiple languages and in a way that speaks directly to local users, all without seeming like a foreign business looking for quick cash? Here’s the secret: global marketing isn’t the challenge SMBs think it is. Success abroad simply requires that you adapt your existing message to align with new cultural and linguistic values, providing customers with the native brand experiences they are expecting.
As noted by GALA, the global marketing landscape is currently fragmented as companies look to bridge the gap between existing supply and emerging demand. Why? Because for businesses, the thought of going global aligns with the connotation of starting over and replacing reams of content and existing brand positioning with a new positioning strategy from the ground up. Instead, companies need to recognize the value in work they’ve already done- rather than scrapping what works, opt for high-quality translation and website conversion services that allow you to repurpose your core message and appeal to a broader “local” audience.
2) Language Is King
If the context of your message isn’t accurate, you risk your business’s content falling flat. Many organizations see this as the core difference between staying local and going global, but in many ways they’re already adapting their material to accommodate domestic variability. There’s an equally important difference, for example, between the shopping habits of west- and east-coast Americans: west-coasters want marketing language that reflects health and fitness values, whereas those on the east coast prefer themes of luxury and enjoyment.
Consider the local market of Quebec, Canada. According to Canadian Business, this French-speaking province demands fully bilingual compliance from all businesses operating within its borders, and may even compel companies to change their name and logo.
You already have experience tailoring your brand to niche markets at the local level and ensuring that the language is “just right” to attract consumer interest. Going global is another step forward; consider leveraging translation software that tracks all content changes and suggests ways to repurpose existing copy rather than reimagining your entire strategy.
3) Scale or Fail
Taking a hard look at global marketing vs domestic marketing reveals one key difference: scale. To compete in multiple markets, each with unique localization requirements, companies should scale their translations on demand and curate multiple websites via a single portal. Consider that Internet use is skyrocketing in non-English speaking countries while, in North America, numbers are climbing at a much slower pace.
To reach new consumers in growing markets like China, India, and Brazil, for example, you need a “multi-domestic” mindset that views global marketing not as an “us-to-them” strategy, but with an “us-to-us-to-us” mentality, where new audiences are seen as new domestic subsets requiring both transcreation and localization, not simply translation.
Achieving this goal requires a cloud-based network that can keep up with the demand and deliver high availability anywhere in the world. This requires providing to users that the website they’re viewing isn’t just well-translated and culturally appropriate, but hosted nearby. This is the truest difference between ‘local’ and ‘foreign.’
*Global marketing is evolution, not revolution. To succeed, you must extend your local strategy, make language a priority, and be prepared to scale. *
Written by Doug Bonderud
Doug Bonderud is a freelance technology writer with a passion for telling great stories about unique brands. For the past five years, he’s covered everything from cloud computing to home automation and IT security. He speaks some French, is fluent in Ancient Greek and a master of Canadian English — and yes, colour needs a ‘u’.