Skip to content
Hero background image

The Digital Marketing Guide: From Local to Global Advertising

Years ago, only large companies had to concern themselves with advertising on a global scale. This was because expanding on that scale usually meant breaking ground and building a brick and mortar facility. The other possibility was mail order. Now, e-commerce has exploded and created opportunities for even small business owners to reach out to global audiences. The challenge is figuring out how to do this effectively. The best place to start is with a strategy that allows you to move your marketing and advertising efforts from a local focus to a global one. Take the following guidelines into consideration to get the best start possible.

4 min read

Get a Cultural Education ASAP

Every time you enter a new country, you may find yourself dealing with an entirely new set of traditions, points of view, historical reference points, values, standards, even laws.  This can impact how every part of your message is received. This includes images, background music, dialogue, pop culture references, etc.

When brands fail to learn about the people and cultures to which they are marketing, the results can be spectacularly embarrassing. Keep in mind that while many of the most popular examples of this are on the humorous side, culturally insensitive marketing can cause genuine offence and seriously damage a company’s reputation.

Take Local Preferences Into Account

Of course, learning about local cultures isn’t just about avoiding offense. You can take that knowledge, and use it to reach out to your new audience in ways that are much more likely to have a positive impact. Customer interests and preferences can vary widely from one place to another. If you cater to those in the right way, you’ll attract a larger audience.

For an example of this, take a look at fast food menus across the globe. What you can buy for lunch around the corner at your local McDonald’s may not be what someone can get an ocean away. It’s not just products that are impacted by different cultural perspectives and preferences. Advertising is impacted as well.

It’s extraordinarily important to understand that what motivates customers in one place won’t be effective for others.

Get Professional Help With Translation And Localization

Even if the majority of your target audience speaks your language, you are better off marketing to them in their native tongue. Simply put, the easier marketing content is to consume, the more effective it is. This means that your advertising copy, website content, landing pages, social media content, etc. must all be translated appropriately.

Furthermore, all of this content should also be localised. While translation is the process of reproducing content in another language, localisation is the process of ensuring that your content is meaningful to your target audience. A localisation specialist possesses skills required to ensure that your marketing content communicates your intended message and meaning after it’s been translated. You can find localisation specialists through websites such as PickWriters that have professionally written reviews of translation services.

Create Strategies For Social Media And Search Engines

Whether you opt for an entirely native strategy, PPC, or both, the approach you’ve taken may not work as you begin advertising on a global scale. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  1. If you’ve been optimizing for Google, you may need to consider other search engines. For example, Baidu and others dominate in different countries.
  2. The same applies to your social media strategy. If your social strategy focuses solely on Facebook, then you won’t be able to be effective in all markets, as can be seen in this map. Adapt your social strategy depending on the location and audience that you are targeting.
  3. You may need to optimise your content for different keyword phrases depending on your target audience.
  4. As your advertising crosses various time zones, you’ll need to adjust your publishing and promotional schedule accordingly.
  5. Relevance is always key to digital marketing. To ensure that your marketing content is meaningful to audience members in any given situation, you must understand the issues that are impacting them right now. Stay on top of news and current events that could impact your potential customers.

Connect With Influencers in New Markets

Getting the support and endorsement of brand ambassadors, industry influencers, and celebrities can have an undeniably positive impact on your marketing efforts. As you begin advertising in other countries, you may want to consider reaching out to entirely new sets of influencers.

In many ways, you’ll do this in the same way that you connected with influencers in your home country. First, you’ll have to identify who has the attention of your target audience. This could be bloggers, owners of complementary businesses, artists etc.  and any others that may be notable within your field or industry. Then, you should start doing the work of connecting with these influencers through social media, and other channels. If you can get local influencers to blog about or even just mention your products, share your content, you’re already off to a great start. This, in turn, can help you significantly increase your social engagement.

Final Thoughts

Advertising and marketing represent some of the biggest challenges you will face as you expand your business into new regions. By applying the strategies mentioned here, you can significantly increase your chances of success. That means understanding the cultures you’ll be marketing to, engaging professional help when necessary, and adjusting your approach according to the preferences of your target audience.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay up to date via our monthly newsletter.