As marketers in today’s world, we are faced with the growing challenge of creating not only domestic marketing strategies, but strategies for going abroad as well. Even the companies with primarily domestic locations still need to think on an international level. Just because an organization is located in the States does not mean their customers are. In order to be successful, marketers must develop strategies to speak authentically to our international demographics.
A lot of marketers have a great understanding of how to market to the States, but struggle when developing international strategies. Today, we are going to look at a couple approaches you can use to successfully reach your customers abroad.
1. Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is the art of partnering with influential social media power-users. These users have a large following of loyal readers. The benefit of working with influencers is their ability to speak about you and your brand in an authentic way. Rather than running an advertisement about how great your brand is, you can get the influencers to do this for you. Because of their loyal following, you automatically win the trust they’ve spent years gaining.
The demographics of the readers are more important than the demographics of the bloggers.
When working with influencers, look for those whose readers represent your target audience. If you are looking to expand your business into Spain, look for bloggers who have a predominance of readers in Spain. You don’t want to just work with a blogger in Spain. Focus on their readers.
2. Authentic Translation
Working with a translation company, like SimulTrans, can ensure that your marketing materials are translated in an authentic way. Many smaller companies use online translation tools that often translate your documents in a very systematic approach. The end result is a direct translation of what you input. The output will most likely not make sense to the native speakers of the language you are trying to reach.
Working with a company that utilizes both machine and professional translators allows you to translate a large amount of material in a short period. Yet, with the added benefit of professional translators reviewing the output, you can ensure that native speakers of your language will fully understand the message you are trying to get across.
Understand the Culture
Just like translation that doesn’t make sense, nothing turns off a potential audience more than a lack of authenticity. If you want to target a foreign country (e.g. Spain), you should understand the culture you are trying to break into. What things do we say in the United States that are faux pas there? If you’re a larger company – or have a larger marketing budget – take some time and immerse yourself in the culture you are trying to break into. Do you want to win business in China? Go to China for a couple of weeks and get a feeling of being there. If you don’t have the budget for this luxury, make sure someone on your team (i.e. your translation team) has in-depth knowledge of the culture, and can ensure you appear as authentic as possible.
Jennifer Beaupre is the Director of Marketing at Jennifer Beaupre. Dynamic, driven marketing executive with extensive experience implementing multi-faceted and highly effective campaigns. Proven track record of exceeding goals. Skilled in executing in-depth analyses, marketing strategy, and proactive, innovative solutions. Published with permission.