After all, content is still (yes, still) king. And while the phrase is admittedly overused, the message is valid.
Getting back to the question at hand, creating engaging, educational content is the ticket to good global marketing, and it can help you get desired results: increased revenue and market share.
But content that’s successful in one market likely won’t have the same result in another. You may need to change up your global content strategy when targeting new locales. Let’s look at the three Rs—relevance, resonance and reach—and see how they work together with localization to help you build rapport—hey, yet another important r-word—with audiences worldwide.
First off, good global content needs to be relevant to your target audiences. It not only needs to be understandable (effectively translated into their language), but it also needs to be pertinent to them.
Let’s look at an example.
Imagine you’re writing ad copy about an exciting Black Friday sale at your company. You send it off, albeit translated, to several markets around the world where you do business. Your audiences in the U.K. and China see “Black Friday” and don’t pay any attention. Heck, some may even stop to read your message but are left scratching their heads in utter confusion.
What’s Black Friday? This company just doesn’t get it.
Probably not the response you are hoping for.
Because Black Friday is a major shopping event in the U.S., it may not be relevant to all audiences in other countries. Your global content strategy should be universal enough to transcend cultures. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t incorporate local events like Black Friday—in fact, this can help messages be even more effective—but this only works when targeting the appropriate market. It’s important to personalize your content in order to get market engagement.
Skipping this step makes it very hard for your new customers to feel like you’re a brand that understands them and their needs. And brand loyalty is hard to come by these days.
According to the Meaningful Brands initiative by Havas Media, “Most people worldwide wouldn’t care if more than 73 percent of brands disappeared tomorrow.”
Pretty harsh, huh? So how do you create an emotional connection with locals through your global content strategy? Localize, localize, localize.
Customize your Web content for your various markets, highlighting aspects of your business that are most important to them—and even design your site in a similar format to what they’re used to seeing. When localizing videos, images, graphics and more, pay attention to cultural norms and sensitivities. It can also be a good idea to include pictures of people from the same target culture so that your audiences can relate to the individuals better.
Even something as simple as someone driving on the road can throw off the integrity of your marketing message. Take, for instance, a commercial picturing someone driving from the left side of the car. For the U.K., where people drive from the right side of the car, this wouldn’t resonate at all.
Conduct some market research and seek expertise from your localization provider to understand how your new audience will relate to your business and your messaging.
So you’ve adapted your global content strategy and worked hard to localize everything from your website to videos to images. What good is all this effort if your target audiences can’t find it? Not much.
When adapting your website for new markets, incorporate a strong multilingual SEO strategy into the plan. Multilingual SEO is similar to traditional SEO efforts in that the principle behind it is the same: direct potential customers to your site through online search. However, it’s not sufficient to simply take existing keywords and translate them word for word.
Your keywords will need to be localized and re-created to match how your target culture searches on your products or services. Check out Five SEO tips for global marketers to learn more.
Global social media is another way to extend messaging reach. As you know, social media is a powerful tool to not only communicate your message but also understand how your prospective customers are talking about that message. And feedback is a crucial component to any global content strategy. Check out Ready to rock at global social media? 5 must-ask questions for more information on translating this dynamic content.
A strong partner to lean on
To plan out and adapt your global content strategy, you need an experienced localization provider to lean on. At Sajan, we help lots of the world’s best-known brands communicate their messages on a global scale, ensuring that every piece of content has relevance, resonance and reach. Get in touch: We’d love to help you too.
Want more valuable tips about content writing and translation? Get our best practice brief Authoring for translation: Ensuring quality from the start.
What aspects do you consider when creating a content strategy for new markets?